The internet is the number one place that people go to get information, in today’s world if people want to quickly find out about something the first place they would look would be the internet. There are well over a billion users on the internet and this number just keeps multiplying day by day. If you are running a small local business chances are there are people amongst the community that are already talking about it online. An online presence for a business is a very powerful marketing tool, an ideal communication platform, creates cost-efficiency within your business, and is environmentally friendly. Having a good business website is a sign of professionalism and is something customers would expect to be able to look to so they can learn more about your products or services.
- It’s simple and cost effective to have a website:
You can use ‘do-it-yourself’ web builders and sites like wordpress to have a standard business website up and running in a matter of hours. But in some cases your business would need a more tailor made website that gives you the freedom to design and implement features as you see fit, and this can be done through one of many professional web developers you can hire. A custom website may cost more than creating a basic one using wordpress, but it does give you the freedom to build a website exactly to your specifications, and overall it is a relatively inexpensive way to reach new markets, interact with them and create better exposure for your business. Websites generally require minimal start-up time and investment – a good business website would generally pay themselves off quickly through the leads and conversions it generates.
- You are open 24/7 :
A website gives you the advantage of promoting your business to many potential customers 24 hours a day, giving the chance for your customers to checkout your products or services at any time that suits them. The added exposure that the internet provides can help increase your sales and create better brand recognition and loyalty. If you are a local business that runs a ‘brick and mortar’ store your customer base is limited to the local community, but if you decide to create an e-commerce store and take your business online, the world becomes your market. You can specifically target a demographic of people around the world based on their interests, age groups, gender etc. This would give you the advantage of marketing to people more likely to purchase your product not limited to the local community – and they could make purchases any time of the day.
- New Customers can find you:
A large majority of people will do research about a company online before doing business with them, regardless of whether it is buying a product or looking for a service. If your business does not appear on search engine results through either SEO or pay per click advertising then this customer is most likely to go with your competitor who does have a presence online. By creating a website and online presence not only can your existing customers find you but you are creating a gateway for new customers that may stumble on your website while browsing online.
- A great marketing, communication and networking tool:
Your website can give you the opportunity to express your core business values and explain to potential customers what your business is about and how you would be the ideal choice for them, you can also have customer testimonials on your website which would also help improve the credibility of your business. You website will also be a great communication platform to help build better business relations locally as well as overseas. By creating forums and linking your website with social media you can directly communicate with customers addressing their concerns and marketing to them in an environment that they are comfortable in. You can also link to your website through various advertising campaigns and even on other websites where you can further increase the exposure your business receives.