People often ask us if their business needs a website. It’s a good question. For a lot of business owners offline marketing techniques, word of mouth and a record of quality service have kept them relevant and successful for years. Our answer is always this though; every business needs a website. We believe having a website for your business is absolutely essential. Online marketing is the easiest way to access new markets. Websites offer a creative and nearly boundless platform to engage users, a platform on which it is easy and fun to bring in large amounts of revenue. In his article for The Guardian Glen Shoosmith argues not having a website in today’s business market is, “a risky strategy to take when your customers are spending more and more of their time online”. When building the case for the importance of a website to a business there are a few things to consider.
1. A website is an investment
This is the first and most basic tenet of web marketing. When you purchase a website you are purchasing more than you could possibly know. Websites function as portfolios for your work. They function as an advertisement for you and your business. They serve as a platform to connect to social media and multiply your networking rewards. They offer clients a way to contact your business, schedule appointments, buy your products, and leave you feedback on how you’re doing. You can even use programs to learn the demographics of site visitors and pin down what new customers you’ve reached, and those you still need to connect with. Having a website to visit is remarkably more convenient for today’s consumer than a phone call. Unfortunately, nobody calls anymore. The text message beats the call for most people most of the time, and the more convenient and intuitive something is, the more likely people will use it. Allowing customers a way to reach you on the Internet is the definition convenient and intuitive. Steerpoint marketing explains, “for a younger audience, not being on the Internet is tantamount to not existing.” This is the pervasiveness of the World Wide Web and the Internet it’s built on. Websites can be thought of as a sort of ditital real estate. Over three billion people worldwide currently use the Internet. Estimates project that by 2020 almost 75% percent of the worlds population will use the Internet. Use these trends to benefit of your business by building a strong web presence with a well-designed website as your flagship. Engaging this massive market of customers will pay off if executed tactfully and make the initial investment in your website worth every penny and then some.
2. Your competitors already have websites
And if they don’t they will, soon. Online marketing is the past, present, and future of business. We’ve checked a variety of sources, all of which agree that about half of all small businesses in the U.S. have a website. As of 2014 studies show 53% of small businesses own websites, up from 49% in 2009. Ask yourself, would you rather be in the 53% and growing or the 47% and shrinking? One source takes these statistics a step further and shows how small businesses that make more money are more likely to have websites than those that make less money. Of the small businesses that made $5-10 million a year 73% had a website compared to less than 50% of businesses making $100,000- 500,000 having a website. Is this a coincidence? We doubt that very much. It’s not that these small businesses got bigger and then could afford to buy a website, a functional website is relatively inexpensive compared to other necessary investments. Instead, we think having a website enabled these businesses to network efficiently and grow to their current size and level of success. If you want to stay on pace with other businesses and grow your customer base it’s essential that you have a website. A professionally made website will not only keep you relevant, it will give you an edge on the competition and help your business thrive.
3. If you’re a local business you can go with a local web designer
Using a business nearby to help you with web design does a few wonderful things. First, it supports the same economy you live and work in. There’s nothing wrong with that. Communities with strong and diverse local businesses typically prosper. Most importantly for you, if you need continued help with your website someone is right down the road ready to help you. You’ll have a more personal, friendly, and trustworthy partnership with a business in close proximity to your own. Local web designers can put you in touch with other local business that you might want to network with. In that profession they encounter businesses of all kinds with valuable products and services available. Our address is 327 East Gay Street West Chester, PA. West Chester/ Greater Philadelphia is our home and we love to work with our neighbors! If you live in the West Chester area stop by our innovative web design store and see what we can do for you.
4. If you’re not using eCommerce you’re missing out, big time
This one is important. According to The Huffington Post, eCommerce sales are projected to hit $278.9 billion by 2015. If you don’t have a website then you can’t very well be using eCommerce, and implicitly you’re missing out on a couple hundred billion dollar market, a market that is projected to grow significantly. If you do have a website eCommerce capabilities can be easily arranged with a proficient web designer and you can start making money online right away. If you think your market is too small or too niche such that it couldn’t benefit from eCommerce, think harder and smarter! Studies show 37% of all smartphone users have purchased items from their mobile device. That percentage has also grown steadily with no signs of stopping anytime soon. This growing mobile market is not bound to any location (necessarily) and is ready and willing to buy from whoever, wherever if it’s what they’re looking for. These buyers have the potential to greatly help your business. Maybe your service isn’t relevant to a truly global audience, but maybe it is. In any case, you can be sure a website will expand your market from local to regional and beyond quickly and efficiently with the help of eCommerce.
5. Your website works for you 24/7
Websites don’t sleep or take breaks. Once they’re up and running they stay that way, with a little professional help. Your store might only be open from 9-5 but your website will work for you 24 hours a day 7 days a week (even holidays). This gives you the ability to inform and engage customers while your store is closed and your employees are off the clock. Owning a website is like having a full time dedicated employee that is willing to advertise, network, and collect money for you all hours of the day. IMCD design has created a list of six ways your website is able to work for you around the clock.
- It is full of valuable information that buyers and sellers are looking for.
- It is a full time communication tool, prompting prospects to contact you to ask questions.
- Your website can set and confirm appointments if you set it up as a secretary.
- Your website is a constant reflection of your personality and welcomes prospects to develop a business relationship with you.
- It will allow prospects to look and see your business and the services you offer, even virtually tour facilities, any time of the day or night.
- You save time in store by showing and informing customers online before they come in.
Need we say more? If you don’t already have a website or if you’ve been wanting to take your website to the next level let us know! Maybe we can help.
Contact Us Today For a Website