Many small business owners have asked themselves if a website is something they need for their business. I even hosted a poll on my instagram just to get a feel of what most people think about this topic. 96% felt that a website is essential for a small business. Since the majority realised the need for a website, this blog post is meant to share with that 4% what they might be missing.
Having a website will provide your potential clients with the information they are looking for as well as giving your business some credibility. Nowadays, consumers expect businesses to have an online presence (this includes a website) and often view a business without a website as less professional.
Having a website says, I am here, I mean business, and I am in it for the long haul. And you might be tempted in this case to make on of those D.I.Y websites for yourself, but that is not always a good idea. Nothing is less professional than using a freebie website. You will get a lot more credibility by working with a professional website designer who will develop a website based on your brand and your user’s needs. That kind of website will provide a professional image and give potential customers a great experience when they visit, whether it’s on their computer, their tablet or their mobile phone.
Quality customer service
You cannot be available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week and 365 days a year to respond to all customer requests. Your website on the other hand, can definitely do that. Your website stays online all the time, meaning that if you or your staff are not available to interact with people looking to do business with you, your website is accessible and able to provide helpful information, or even allow customers to make purchases or submit orders.
Search engine results
It’s hard for people to just find your business if they don’t know about it. More often than not, they visit a search engine to find a service provider. According to TechJury, 93% of online experiences start with a search engine, and close to half of those searches are for local businesses.
For that reason your business must have a search-optimized website that will make it easy for your potential clients to find you on search engines.
Reach new customers
A website allows you to reach a large number of clients you might not have reached. You may be using other methods to advertise such as the newspaper, social media etc. but there is another large pool of consumers on the internet who may not have seen your ad campaign, that can be reached through your website.
Research by YellowPages and LSA found that, on average, consumers use approximately three sources before making an individual purchase decision, and 30 percent automatically strike a business from consideration if they don’t have a website.
Gather contact information
A tv, radio or newspaper ad campaign can cost a lot of money. Using your own website as a point of contact where you can collect people’s contact information is a lot cheaper. With a web site you can have people who would like to receive your newsletter send you their email address. You can then email your newsletter to all of the people in your database, automatically! You don’t need to pay for ad space, printing or postage for these newsletters. Continual contact with prospects is a proven tactic which directly leads to more inquiries and sales!
Showcasing services and products
You can use your website as a place to show potential customers what they’ll get when they work with you by displaying high-quality photography on your website. It is advisable that you have your website designed in a way that matches your brand. If you run a business such as a restaurant, where customers would have to visit the physical locations, your website design, along with the featured images, can give people a sense of what it feels like to enter your physical location.
If you have any specialised products, your website would be the best place to display this. Continuing with the example of the restaurant, if you serve vegan food, gluten free products etc, the website would be the best place to note this, to ensure you attract the right customers.
Having to rely on social media
Some business owners think they don’t need a website because they are on facebook or instagram. Well, so is every other business you are competing against. It’s getting harder for businesses to connect with users on these platforms. Within a week of the last Facebook algorithm update, organic reach plummeted lower than it was already. Another bummer? In 2018, people spent 50 million fewer hours on the platform than they did in 2017.
We also can’t forget the instances when these platforms have had blackouts that left entrepreneurs high and dry. Imagine if something catastrophic where to happen to facebook or instagram and you had nowhere else to make contact with potential clients? While social media can help your business grow, don’t bank on using it as your sole marketing channel, especially in the future.
A website is one of the best investments any business can make in its future. I hope the few points I have shared with you helped to show somethings you might be missing by not having a website. If you are ready to start working on your website, checkout the packages we have to offer. Please feel free to share this blog post with any budding entrepreneur who might be interested in this information.