Every business of every size has a website.
But that is NOT the case.
As of early 2018, only 64 percent of small businesses have a website. So about 1/3 of all businesses do not.
And while the exact definition of a “small business” varies depending on the industry. A small business is generally considered any business with fewer than 500 employees.
Whether you’re a one-man operation marketing your particular skill set. A local service company looking for customers, or an eager entrepreneur starting a new venture.
A website is an important part of your success.
And here are 10 reasons why having a good website should not be considered optional.
1. It Enhances Your Credibility
Have you ever heard about a company and then immediately search for them online?
Only to realize they don’t have a website?
This happens all too often. And it makes potential customers, people or other businesses searching for you question your credibility.
They start to wonder whether the company they’re searching for might be some fly-by-night operation or untrustworthy to do business with.
You need a website because sure, you may get a mention here or there on the internet or other websites. Such as review sites or local directories.
But NOTHING establishes your credibility online like having a website of your own.
And with that being said, it can also look bad if you have a website but… little to almost no mention of your business or company anywhere else on the internet.
So, it’s also important to get listed on local online business directories, review sites, your local Better Business Bureau.
And other places on and off the internet that’ll boost your awareness and reputation.
When done right, you’ll build trust with potential customers. But it all starts with having your own website.
2. Perfect Place to Showcase Your Products or Services
Are you proud of the awesome products you sell?
Or the artwork you create, and services you provide?
Because with a website you can show off what you can do for others. And it encourages them to buy from you.
Or have you cater to their event, landscape their property, fix their plumbing, electrical, or whatever it is you do.
And if you sell products that can be shipped to customers, you can even have a shopping cart integrated into your website.
It’s a beautiful feeling waking up to new orders that need to be filled!
3. It’s a Foundation for Cost-Effective Digital Marketing
Search engine optimization (SEO) is considered to be one of the most cost-effective methods of obtaining new customers for your business.
But, without a website, any SEO strategies you work on might not be as effective.
SEO brings new prospects and customers to your website. So without a website, you have no place for them to go.
A website is your own piece of virtual real estate, storefront, shop, and so much more.
So, if you don’t have a website, you’re out of luck as far as implementing this excellent customer and lead-generation tool.
4. Websites Have Never Been Cheaper or Easier to Make
We’ll go into more detail at the end of this article on how to make a new website.
But, creating a website has never been more doable than it is today.
Once upon a time, you had to pay a lot of money for either a professional designer. Or website building software like Dreamweaver and Frontpage.
In the early days, you had to know HTML coding if you wanted to put together a website. But over time, software evolved.
To where it now allows users to integrate WYSIWYG (What You See Is What You Get) capabilities.
So now you can just drag and drop design elements and images where you want them to go.
Today, there are online website builders that’ve become successful by making website design as simple as possible for non-professionals.
They’ll even handle the hosting for your website as well. And both the creation and hosting are typically covered for a low monthly fee.
Compared to paying a lot more money for the same capabilities just 10 years ago.
5. It Boosts Your Long-Term Success
Without needing to get into specific internet usage statsistics, more people than ever are using the internet.
Smartphones and devices have increased access to apps and the internet.
People can find the goods, services, and companies they need from a device they can store in their pockets.
And by the way, this trend and increase in access, and use of devices connected to the internet is expected to increase.
By not having a professional presence on the internet, you are leaving an untold number of potential sales and money on the table.
Money that could have been yours. All you have to do is create a website and platform.
One where customers and people in your local community and all ACROSS the World can find and do business with you.
6. It Helps Local Customers Find You
Perhaps you haven’t bothered creating a website yet because you’re a small local service business.
A business with only a handful of employees.
Or yourself as the owner and operator.
For this reason, all of your customers are within a given number of miles of your location.
So… you more than likely use local outreach methods to connect with them.
Like word of mouth or direct mail marketing. Methods that don’t involve the internet.
At most, you may place listings on Facebook or Craigslist.
But perhaps you haven’t seen the need to take the plunge. And invest in yourself and your business by creating a website.
If you’re in this situation, you should know 97 percent of people learn more about a business online.
Before reaching out and making contact.
Also, there has been a 900% increase in searches that include the keywords “near me” or “close by”.
And that’s just over the past two years.
Another powerful benefit of having a website for connecting with new, local customers is you can connect them to online maps.
Like Google Maps, Apple Maps, Waze, and other map focused apps.
Tons of people get a businesses’ location through Google Maps or Apple maps before actually going to it.
7. A Website Serves as Another Potential Point of Contact
Websites operate 24/7, all year (365 days) long.
While you sleep, they are up and running. Allowing those in need of your products and services access to what you provide and offer.
They can benefit you and even work together with any local ads you might place in publications. Or flyers you pass out.
Your website acts as a companion and destination for any other outreach method you are and will implement later on.
And to expand your business as fast as possible, you need to be reaching out in as many different ways as you.
Other than social media apps, your website is the first place customers and possible leads will try and contact you.
Some people still prefer contacting business owners and companies by email.
Or filling out a contact form on a website rather than calling, or going in person to get more information.
8. Your Website Is Working for You 24 Hours a Day
As previously mentioned websites are always up and running. And they’re easy to maintain.
Unlike a storefront or physical location.
Also, in the above example, it was stated, some customers prefer emailing you or filling out a form.
Rather than calling you.
So it’s important to note, with a website, they can do this. At any time of day or night.
They can also go to your website to read about your products, services, or recent offers at any time.
A professionally crafted website can act as your own 24/7 automated sales staff.
It’s a great feeling waking up and seeing a question from someone interested in what your have to offer.
The only thing left for you to do is reach out to them. Answer any questions they might have and make sure they are all set before making a sale or closing the deal.
9. A Website Enables You to Stay Competitive
Have you noticed a downward trend in the number of customers you’ve gotten over the past year or two?
If you don’t have a website, that might be a big reason why. Chances are, your competitors do have a website.
There are also the aforementioned stats about the numbers of people who search online for information.
For every type of local company before reaching out and contacting them.
If potential customers can find information about your competitors at any time of day or night, but they can’t do the same with you and yours.
That’s a major problem. Fix it.
10. A Website Helps You Build Your Unique Brand Identity
When you design a website or have one designed for you, you can add your own logo, color scheme, and other visual elements.
In addition to a tagline or motto for your company.
All of this helps to establish your specific brand or company .
Plus, as you grow and attract more attention and customers, your brand and brand strategy will help gain you even more recognition.
And separate what you have to offer from any other potential competitors.
Those are 10 reasons why you need a website.
If you don’t have one yet or would like to make an investment in your own website, find out more and how below.
How to Get a Website Today
As mentioned in reason #4 above, creating a website has never been easier or cheaper than it is today.
Maintaining a website is easy as well.
Since hosting fees are now fairly low, and many website building services will include hosting your site within their fee.
The best website builders offer a good mix of affordability and ease of use.
And when designing one or getting one built, make sure they’re search engine friendly in terms of their coding and design.
This will start you off on the right foot when it comes to new and existing customers finding your website.
The following are some well-known Website Builders:
Wix – It’s considered an excellent website builder and is ideal for small businesses or new business websites. At the time of this writing, their business/e-commerce plans range from $23 a month all the way up to $500 a month with maximum functionality for large companies.
Squarespace – They offer more affordable plans ranging from $12 all the way up to $40 a month. This company offers a cheaper way for businesses to get their feet wet in the digital world. While still offering considerable functionality.
Weebly – As a user-friendly website builder, it’s known for offering excellent value. It has an impressive suite of features with plans from $60 a year up to $456 a year as of 2020.
Choose a Digital Marketing Agency – Are computers and the internet in general indecipherable babble to you?
First, fix it by educating yourself on the internet and how computers work. I suggest you take a computer literacy class at your local library or somewhere local.
Because the world is only becoming more connected and computerized each day.
That said, if you need a website now, one option is for you to find a local digital marketing agency in your area. One that can create websites for businesses and people like you. Like…
Red October Firm – You can have us professionally handle it all for you.
We are an Art and Creative Marketing Firm located in the heart of Connecticut.
And unlike the 3 options above, we WILL get you set up a step above your competitors when it comes to the design, layout, and SEO (finding you/your business on Google) of your website.