You need a business website to effectively compete and thrive in today’s market. Learn how having your own website directly benefits your business and your bottom line. Here are the top ten reasons to get online today.
1) Be Visible – Your Customers Are Online, Are You?
Think about your customers (potential and current). Where are they right now? At work, at home or maybe out and about with their smartphones – in any scenario it’s highly likely that they are connected to the internet. Whether checking social media, searching for for how to articles & recipes or catching up on local news, most of your customers spend a large and increasing part of their days online for work, pleasure and information. Today’s consumer is right at home online, so when it comes time to buy a service or product you can bet on them turning to their favorite search engine to see what their options are. A business website makes you visible when your customers are looking to spend.
2) Your Competitors Have a Website – Don’t Fall behind!
A solid online presence for today’s small business has become a competitive necessity. There’s no way around it, any of your competitors who are using business websites, email and social media will have a distinct advantage over you if your business is invisible online. An internet search has truly become the replacement for picking up a phone book when consumers are looking to do business. Having a business website opens doors to being noticed online and should be the first step in your digital strategy.
3) Gain Credibility with Customers and Strengthen Your Brand
Customers often make decisions on where to purchase based on how professional or credible a business appears to be, so having a strong brand is essential when it comes to making the sale. While it can be tough as a small business to compete with the large advertising budget of chains and corporations, a website is one of the most cost effective ways to give potential customers a positive and professional first opinion of your business.
4) Always Be Accessible – Convenience For You and Your Clients
Customers will always have some basic questions before they do business with you. What are your hours? Where are you located? What services or products do you offer? A potential client may be searching for this information about your business at any time of the day or night including days when you are closed.
While you may not be able to answer the phone outside business hours, you can provide all of these common answers to clients 24/7 with a website. Having a site with this information constantly available is extremely valuable. Think of your business website as an extra employee that is always working to provide information to your customer base. Convenience is key in customer service and you can’t get much more convenient than a 24/7 source of information!
5) Save Time and Repetition – Offer Self Serve Information
It’s very likely that if you add up all the time you spend answering the same questions each week about hours and services and directions to your shop, you’d end up with a nice chunk of extra time to focus on more productive tasks for your business (or even take a much needed break!) This time can be easily saved by listing this information on your website where potential customers can find it without asking on the phone or in person. Many people have such busy schedules that the quick convenience of looking up information online is preferable to placing a call or physically going to a business.
6) Save Money – A Website is Constant Advertisement
A website is an advertisement that runs 365 days per year and usually the cost is significantly lower than paying to place advertisements in print publications or having expensive brochures and flyers made. Websites also have the benefit of containing much more information than a typical ad and being easier to find when customers are actually looking for you!
7) Expand Your Marketing Reach – Take Advantage of Digital foot Traffic
Many small businesses rely on foot traffic to attract new customers which can be a great strategy depending on your location, but what about about all the potential customers that never walk by? You can easily (and cheaply!) widen your marketing reach if you use a website to capture digital foot traffic. Similar to people walking down the street and seeing your sign, there are many ways a future client can stumble upon your business on the internet when you have a website.
8) Gather Feedback – A Website is a great opportunity to Find out What Your Customers Want
There are an abundance of easy to use tools that can help you put up quick surveys on your website or even send them through email to capture the opinions of your current and potential customers. Knowing what people want makes it much easier to sell to them, and with this feedback being nearly free it’s a great tool to help you expand your profits with very little time and upfront cost.
9) Capture Leads – Build a Valuable List of Potential Customers for Effective Marketing
Building an email list may be one of the most valuable things you can do for your business, and this becomes very easy when you have a website! With a simple form you can start collecting contact information for people who are interested in your services and want to be informed of things like new services and products or any seasonal specials you may run.
10) Social Media Becomes More Valuable With a Business Website!
Participating to some degree in social media is almost as important these days as having a website or an email list, but without having your own site to link to it can be very hard to leverage these technologies.
For example, if you decide to run a holiday promotion and use Twitter or Facebook to inform your customers of the deal, you should make sure you are giving them some clear way to act on this information. If you have a website, you can include a direct link from your social media post to lead to a signup form or a contact page, giving the customer a direct way to read more, ask questions or make an appointment while your business is fresh in their minds!