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Social media might be slowly (or maybe not so slowly) taking over the world, but it won’t replace the need for a website. To some it might seem inconceivable that there are still companies out there without websites. Others will shrug their shoulders and ask what difference it makes. But if you don’t already have a website, you could be missing out.
How many small businesses already have a website?
In 2020 a survey in the US found that 28% of small businesses did not have a website. The COVID-19 pandemic had already highlighted the need for a strong online presence and 44% of those without said they planned to create one in 2021.
Fast forward to 2022 and the same survey found that 27% of small businesses still don’t have a website. Which suggests that not many of the 44% intending to get a website (you can do the maths!) got round to doing it. This time, however, 86% of those without are planning to get one. We’ll see.
So, why does your business need a website? If you think social media takes care of everything a website could do, it’s time to think again. People seem to understand the need enough to be planning to get one, but the figures suggest they don’t always see it through.
If you’re still wondering about it and thinking you might get round to it one day, here are seven reasons why you should do it now, not put it on your list of things to do ‘in the future’:
7 Reasons Why… Your Business Needs A Website
1. You’ll build social proof and trust
A website offers social proof and helps build trust. A quick Google search will show a potential customer that you exist and are a serious company. After all, isn’t that what you’d do to do your own ‘due diligence’ on a recommendation a friend or family member gave you? And if not, why not?
Even if your business works mainly from referrals, the lack of an online presence these days is unusual. Would you take the chance on employing an accountant, for example, if you were unable to find any proof of their existence online?
A Verisign survey found that “84% believe a business with a website is more credible than one that only has a social media page”. You could be losing out on referral business too.
2. You’ll benefit from SEO and other marketing opportunities
SEO – search engine optimisation – of websites can bring more customers to your website. According to GE Capital Bank, 81% of retail shoppers research online before buying.
If SEO and website-marketing strategies are managed properly your website will not just put you in front of customers, it will help drive conversions and encourage other opportunities. Your website analytics will also give you insightful data that can be useful for informing future marketing strategies.
3. Your website will belong to you, be permanently available and save time and resources
Unlike social media channels, your website is under your control. You are not at the mercy of their ever-changing algorithms either. Not to mention, not everyone uses social media.
A website is always accessible to customers. People can send an email or buy your products or services whenever it suits them, wherever they are in the world. Chatbots can answer queries while you are asleep.
A well-written FAQs page on your website will save you time and effort. You can use them to pre-qualify potential customers or to answer the queries and questions you get asked all the time. This saves having to respond to individual enquiries, freeing up your time and personnel for more important things.
4. You can show all your products and services in one place
You can easily explain and display all your products and services on a website, making it much simpler for potential customers and easier for you to manage change. Older information will not slip down a timeline or get lost in the ether like it can on social media.
5. You’ll have easily accessible, valuable information that is also bringing more customers to you
A website can be used to post blogs, company news, and other information relevant to your customers and will also help with your SEO strategy. Posting regular blogs will inform your customers and help with your social proof, as well as driving more organic traffic to your website.
6. You can feature reviews and testimonials
Given that 85% of customers trust online reviews and testimonials as much as personal recommendations, it would be foolish to ignore the opportunity a website gives you to showcase them.
7. Your website should be cost effective
A website does not have to cost a fortune, but it should be well designed and written, responsive, and optimised for mobile use: if it isn’t you can lose customers to the competition. However, a relatively small investment in a good website should pay dividends in the opportunities it creates.
Are you ready to get that all-important website? Well-written copy will greatly improve your chances in a competitive marketplace. If you would like to know more about how I can help you with your website, please get in touch. I’d love to hear from you!