Today social media is so prevalent that sometimes business owners often think that having a website for their business is not needed, too much work, costly, and just plain doesn’t work, but that could not be further away from the truth. These social media platforms make it simple, relatively speaking, to create social media profiles such as Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, or LinkedIn.
Here are top benefits of having a website for your business, along with some ideas on how to get the most bang for your buck out of it:
1. You Must Look Professional
Rather than just being the small “corner shop” down the street, having a website (especially a well-made one) gives the impression that you are serious, and ready to do business with all kinds of customers. This is about building credibility for your potential clients or customers.
2. Take Ownership – You Own It!
Creating a new website and buying your domain name (www.yourbusiness.com) will help you show your customers that you mean business and own your business’s name and is a quick and easy way to improve your brand identity.
You can also get a custom business email with your business domain that will add to that sense of branding as well (email@example.com). Most consumers regard company-branded email is more credible than a business using a generic email account. Many big-name website hosting companies, like GoDaddy will include custom email addresses as part of their hosting packages, or it is a very low-cost add-on.
3. Search Engine Rankings – Free Leads
When you are searching for a product or service online through sites like Google, Bing, or Yahoo you will see a list of website results that matches your search query. There are SEO (Search Engine Optimization) tactics that you can apply to your company website to improve its rankings on those search engines.
Not having a website makes it a lot more difficult for your company to rank and gain free traffic and sales from search engines. Increase your reach!
4. Turn Website Visits Into Leads
Gaining visitors to your website is good, but gaining customers is even better! With a well-optimized website, you get your potential leads to call, sign up, or purchase a product from your business. You can turn your website into a leading salesperson for your business that works 24/7!
5. Collecting Customer Contact Information – Email List
Once your website is built, adding a form for people to sign up for your mailing list goes a long way. You now have an easily managed list of potential customers or current customers to advertise to. Email marketing can be up to 40 times more effective in acquiring new customers than social media.
6. Hangout Where Your Customers Do – Online
The internet is everywhere, why not be everywhere? Even having a basic website is helpful. For many people, if they cannot find it online, it does not exist as far as they are concerned.
Being on the web means being able to reach people where they are. That includes smartphones. Your website should be able to change itself to fit these screens. Most websites these days can automatically alter themselves to fit both smartphones and desktop computers. If most of your customers seem to always have a smartphone in their hand, then it is a good idea to be able to reach them directly.
7. Sell Products and Service – 24/7 Sales Channel Always Open
If your business sells products or services that can be delivered, consider investing in an online shopping (e-commerce) and checkout section of your website. Some website packages can help build this section for you. This makes it even easier than the old days requiring less “technical skills”. You may be able to reach an entirely new set of customers that may not be close to your local store or service area. Depending on the nature of your business, you may have the world to sell to!
8. Keeping it Simple
As mentioned above, back the early days of the internet, you needed to know computer code or HTML to make an impressive-looking website. Today, there are many services out there that allow you to visually create your website, and some are absolutely free. But, for a very modest investment, web design companies are a “one-stop-shop” that can handle all the technical details for you. Most have a variety of customizable templates to choose from. Building a website is now very easy — and affordable.
9. Promote Your Brick and Mortar Locations
This might seem completely contradictory but having a website for your business can and may help increase foot traffic at your brick-and-mortar locations. Having your basic info (NAP) like store location information, addresses, hours, and phone numbers on your website will be indexed by Google, Yahoo, Bing. The next time someone looks for your store online the search results more than likely will include your store details. (Google My Business) This is especially important for mobile devices and customers using smartphones. We are always “On The Move” so these potential customers can search your business, find your address, and quickly get directions right on their phones.
10. Impression is Everything! – Traditional Branding + Your Website
Include your website address (URL) on all your existing marketing and promotional material (business cards, brochures, etc.). You could see additional sales down the road that does not require someone to make a phone call, people like simple.
Here is a good example:
If someone picked up a piece of your businesses product or marketing materials and is not planning to buy right away, you have planted a seed. As soon as they get serious about making a purchase, your materials (with your website) is right there under their noses. Your website is likely where they will now start their product research. When you combine traditional marketing and promotional materials with the added information on your website, your business is more likely to “stick” in customers’ minds, especially if you have added e-commerce (#7) to your website.