Tuesday, 1 November 2011

Why Does Your Small Business Need a Website?

"But, why do I need a website? I have been in business a long time and never needed a website"
Well, that is a good argument and may be valid. However, the times, they are a changing'.

Having a website is like having a sign that says you are open for business. It is just a little part of doing business but it can make your business seem more legitimate to your clients.

You automatically:
- look more professional
- have more credibility

When you give a person your contact information, it makes you seem more established. When people see that you have your own website, right away it looks like you care about your customers and want to give them information. It is all about positioning yourself and setting yourself apart from the competition. If someone just rolls into town and they look up 3 different businesses and yours is the only one with a website, the others will look poorer for it.

When you have a website, it shows that you are up-to-date and current with your marketing. People expect to see your website address. They may never go and visit your site - they may not need to, but that doesn't matter. You need to have a site and you need to get it out where people can see it. It can set you apart from other businesses in your town that do not have a site.

Another good reason to have your own website is that you can convey your image to people right inside their own homes.

Someone sitting in their living room can look you up online and find out about your business, the products or services you offer and get to know a bit about you before they even leave their house to buy your product or service. When you buy advertising space, usually the more you buy, the more it costs. A ½ page ad in the phone book costs more than a ¼ page ad. Then they charge you extra for colours and so on.

When you have a website you get to leverage your advertising dollars. Now all you need to do is market your website address and drive traffic there. Once people get to your website, you have basically all the space you want and it doesn't cost extra! Now you can have pictures, audio, video, demonstrations, coupons, information, details, features, benefits, colours, logo, and anything else you can think of - at little or no extra cost! Far more than you can include directly into the various types of media you are currently utilizing.
So now you have a great "advertisement" - your website - but you are able to buy smaller, less expensive ads in the media. This can be very powerful to your advertising budget.

Having your own website name means you can have an email address at your-own-business-name.com (for example). It becomes part of your identity. It means you can have a company email address. Everyone needs an email address just like everyone needs a phone. Some people just prefer to use email over the phone and by not having one, you could be leaving those people unserved. Do not discount the value that a website - even a simple one - adds to your small business.

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