Two-thirds of small businesses have a website, which is an improvement over where things were a decade ago. That said, many small business owners believe that they can do without the expense of a website and only use the ubiquitous tools of social media. Having a Facebook page, Instagram or Twitter accounts are also essential aspects for the marketing of companies; however, it’s still a vital component of owning a company to create a website. In other words, yes, it’s worth the time and expense.
If you’re about to start a new company or you have a service business and have been doing without a website, let’s take a look at our top reasons for diving in and developing a site.
- The first reason to create and develop a website is that it helps to validate your business. Even if you could and do operate your company without a website, you’re missing opportunities if you don’t have a site. The reality is that when people meet you or hear about your amazing services and products from someone they know, one of the first things they are going to do is to search for you on the internet. People want to know who they are patronizing or intend to do business and the internet helps provide the answers. Having a site is a basic expectation in today’s business climate. When you have a website, you demonstrate that you’re a leader in your particular industry. You can add heft to your site with such things as news and media pages. You can also consider creating a blog so that you can show your thought and industry experience and leadership, which will only motivate people to want to do business with you.
- Decisions, decisions. Consumers today are inundated with information because of the digital era, which includes social media. When your customers or prospects, are scrolling through the day’s news, emails or social media, it’s very easy to overlook your Facebook page or Instagram postings. Another primary reason for creating a website is because it offers the opportunity to your small business to minimize the decision-making for the public and shortens the time for making a sale. If people seek your product or service, driving them to your website is one targeted place that provides the public with your information. Remember, the more choices people have, the longer their decision-making process will be as they do research. Having a website that provides the necessary information is intended to help people make the right––and easy choice––off of your site. No other marketing tool (e.g., social media) aside from a website effectively provides all of the information and reasons as to why people should buy from you.
- Your name is yours. The reason why anyone goes into business is that they want to be successful and make a profit. Unfortunately, when this happens, there are nefarious characters who wish to capitalize on your success. Therefore, owning a website helps to ensure that you’re communicating to the public what you offer in your company. By holding the URL and having a legitimate site, there is no confusion to the public as to what your products or services are and what you’re offering them. Owning a website allows you the chance to control all aspects of your brand, positioning and messaging. When you have a site, because of the oversight you exert, it helps prevent someone else from diluting your brand’s image. One other point when choosing a URL (and company name), make it something that will be easy for people to remember.
- It’s all about the bots. If your business is not searchable on the internet and does not come up not only on the first page but in the first ranking (ideally), it’s going to be much harder for you to sell your products or services. As you probably know, Google is the number one search engine on the planet, followed by YouTube. Search engines use crawlers, which are AI bots to filter and rank massive amounts of information that exists on the internet so they can produce the best search results for whatever a user inputs into a search engine. It’s vital toward the success of your business to have an internet presence, and the wisest way to create it is by having a website which is search engine optimized (SEO). Additionally, when you have new content on your site, such as new postings to a website blog, you help elevate your brand’s online presence in the search engine rankings. If you’re looking for an optimized site, always make sure to speak to an expert.
- Measuring effectiveness. If your website is connected to your CRM system, you have a great way to measure how many people are visiting your site and from that, how many people are converting to customers. No matter if you’re a product or service company, you can see with black and white numbers if people who are visiting your site are becoming your clients. Having this information is another aspect of the marketing formula that is essential to the success of your business because your website serves as a tool to help you understand if your marketing is resonating with the public. If you are not where you want to be in converting prospects into customers, it could be your sales prospecting, but it can also be the messaging. Having a website allows you to understand any gaps with measurable facts.
The thought of investing in a website should always be that creating a site is a wise business investment. When your company has a website, you have control over your brand. Your small business also has a piece of “real estate” where you can direct prospect leads and customers. Even with the use of social media, which should serve as tools in service of driving people to your site, having a website allows people to understand the full picture of what you do when you encourage people to it. Finally, having a website will enable you to test new ideas, develop current clients and reach new audiences as you continually improve it and make adjustments as you learn more information about what works and doesn’t.
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