Having a website is essential to any business regardless of its size. Many customers utilize their cellphones or tablets to conduct most of their everyday tasks, from banking to grocery shopping and a business website literally puts you at their fingertips.
With a website, you can provide potential customers or clients with all the information they need about your company. However, this doesn’t mean you can simply have a generic website.
You will need to put in the time and effort to create a website that shows your company means business and a professional website will generate instant credibility in front of your target market.
Luckily you are not in this alone, there are many small business website packages that can assist you in creating a website that is sure to give your company a competitive edge and generate customer traffic that will help your business prosper and grow.
Why do you need a website?
A website for your small business is vital to the success and growth of your company. Listed below are some of the reasons why you need a website for your small business:
1. To Generate Leads and Sales
- There are currently 4,208,571, 287 Internet users. (Internet World Stats)
- 3.2 billion Internet users are also social media users. (Top 10 Website Hosting)
- It’s estimated that by the year 2040, 95% of purchases will be through the Internet
- 50% of people who conduct a local search on their smartphone visit the physical store within a day
A website is a great tool to generate leads and sales if done correctly. When a potential client lands on your site through a search engine or an ad, they should be directed to a page in which they can fill out their contact information, thus generating a new lead or sale for your company.
This will require some work on your part; it’s not as simple as a click here button, many leads are generated through blogs, social media, live chat, or email marketing.
It is essential to also include a thank you page, this is where your potential client will be directed after filling out their information and on this page, you can include links for the potential client to download offers or allow them to share your website with friends leading to an infinite amount of potential clients.
2. To Position Your Products/Service as a Quality Business
- 88% of consumer pre-research their buys online before making a purchase either online or in-store
- 55% of people will search online for reviews and recommendations before making a purchase, with 47% visiting the company website, 26% checking out the physical store, and 23% of people talking with friends and family
- Customer testimonials have the highest effectiveness rating for content marketing at 89% (Social Fresh)
Not only will a website provide a place to reach potential clients, but it is also a way to enhance the image of your business. By putting the time, effort, and sometimes money into building the proper website you can enhance the image of your business and strengthen your brand.
Having a business website is going to boost your credibility. Your website will be available 24/7, and you can use it to define how you want your business to be viewed and provide viewers as little or as many information about your product and what is unique about it.
3. To Demonstrate the Expertise of the Team
- 74.2% of companies say content marketing increased their lead quality and quantity (Curata)
- 81% of businesses use video as a marketing tool to demonstrate their expertise (Hubspot)
- 58% of consumers say they have bought a new product in the last 6 months because of an influencer
A website can help potential clients or customers understand what your business has to offer and how it stands out from other similar companies. It is crucial to reach and engage the client on their level; many companies’ websites fail to do this because they utilize ineffective tools like pop-ups or long written explanations of their business. Listed below are the most effective ways to engage potential clients on your website:
By posting blogs on your website, you can provide information to potential clients in a way that is engaging and includes information for a specific aspect of your business.
One of the most effective ways to engage potential clients is through short videos that help to provide them with information on specific projects or services. Potential clients are often busy and have a short attention span, so they are more likely to a short video explaining your product or service as opposed to reading a lengthy description.
By providing a client testimonial page on your website, you can provide potential clients with testimonials from clients who purchased and were satisfied with your product or service. This helps to reassure potential clients that you are a company they can trust.
4. To Increase Ease of Contact for Prospect and Client
- 80% of Google search interest in “near me” came from mobile in Q4 2014 (Think with Google)
- 54% of smartphone users search for business hours
- 53% of smartphone users search for directions to a local store
- 28% of those searches for something nearby result in a purchase
To make your small business successful, it is vital that potential customers or clients can easily find important information about your company quickly and conveniently. When a potential client lands on your website, it is essential to provide the following information:
–Physical or Mailing Address
–Hours of Operation
5. To Provide Clients with Easily Accessible and Useful Information and Tools
- 86% of buyers are willing to pay more for a great customer experience
- 72% of customers will share a positive experience with 6 or more people. On the other hand, if a customer is not happy, 13% of them will share their experience with 15 or even more.
- 88% of companies now prioritize customer experience in their contact centers
- 91% of customers would use an online knowledge base, if it were available and tailored to their needs
When designing your website, it is essential to provide potential clients with relevant information and tools to help them choose your company over others they have been researching.
Many clients have a specific budget they are working with, and by providing a section on your website that lists your fees for particular services or links to calculators to help estimate costs for larger projects, it will help save the client time and money and help them choose your company.
One essential component of your website should be a FAQ page that provides answers to the most common questions your clients may have.
Potential clients usually have a specific reason they are searching for a company, and by offering solutions to the most common problems, it will save both you and the client time, and they will know that your company can provide the service they require.
How to Get a Professional Small Business Website
Now that you understand how vital it is to the success of your small business to have a website, you may be asking yourself: how to do I get a website?
The answer to this question is you can hire someone to create a website for you, or you can build the website yourself. Listed below are the benefits of each option to help you choose which is right for you:
Benefits of Hiring a Professional to Build Your Website
A professional will include high-quality features, including images, plugins, and specific coding to create a unique website for your business. These features will help your website stand apart from similar companies.
Search Engine Optimization
A professional can make sure to optimize search engine optimization and ensure your website is seen by the most amount of people. Professionals know the right words and phrases to use to allow your website to be found quickly and easily.
Hiring a professional to build your website will ensure that the site is not only user-friendly but fast as well. Nothing makes a potential customer leave a website quicker than a site that is slow. Clients are often pressed for time, and a will not stay on a website that is slow no matter how reasonable your prices are or what the quality of your product is.
By hiring a professional to build and maintain your website you can focus on running your business. A website is a vital asset to your business and takes time to build and monitor, hiring a professional can save you time and allow you to focus on other parts of your business. This is especially true if you’re not a technical person at all.
Benefits of Creating Your Own Website
For all businesses, money is always a factor, especially those just starting, they do not have the capital available to hire a professional website builder. Professional website builders have fees that can range from $500 to well over $10,000.
If you build your own the cost can be as low as $200/year (for hosting + domain). Luckily you do not have to be a computer expert to create your own website; there are site builders that are affordable and provide tools and help to build your website.
Many of these build your own websites allow you to try their product for free, and if you like it, you can pay more for additional services. If you have a lot of time and could tolerate the learning curve, then creating your own website would be the best choice.
Some reputable website builders include:
By building your own website, you can control how you want it to look and have complete control over how the site looks and what it contains. Depending on your business, you may have a hard time conveying your vision to someone else, and it may be more beneficial to create the website yourself.
If you want to have your website up and running quickly, you can generally accomplish this in as little as 48 hours using a website builder yourself (if you’re a technical person). Generally, it takes about a week or so for a professional company to build a website for you.
Websites are an essential component to any successful business, and whether you choose to build the site yourself or hire a professional to do it, it is crucial to make sure it is easy to find and navigate so you can reach the highest number of potential customers and help your business thrive and grow.
How much is a business website worth for you?
In today’s world a website is an essential part of any business whether it is a small business or a large corporation. Most potential clients or customers conduct their research and business on smartphones, tablets, or laptops, so having a website that is easy to access and navigate will provide value that far exceeds the cost of building the website.
Let’s say you are a small landscaping company that you run out of your home, and you have a website that costs $20 a month to maintain, and your website generates 4 new customers a month who contract you to mow their lawns weekly for $80 per month.
Month 1: Revenue: $320 – Cost $20. Profit = $300
Month 2: Revenue: $640 – Cost $20. Profit = $620
Month 3: Revenue: $960 – Cost $20. Profit = $940
Month 4: Revenue: $1,280 – Cost $20. Profit = $1,260
Month 5: Revenue: $1,600 – Cost $20. Profit = $1,580
Now let’s look at a more significant example, say you are a company that designs and installs swimming pools, and you have a website that costs $50 a month to maintain and through the site you gained a new client that purchases and installed a $50,000 swimming pool, that one client you reached through your website more than made up for the cost of building and maintaining your website.
The answer is simple; no matter what size business you have, you cannot afford not to have a website. Websites can reach customers virtually anywhere at any time and increase your business sales and profits. The cost to build and maintain a website is nominal in comparison to the profits it will generate.
In the end, whether you choose to have someone build and maintain a website for your small business or you choose to create one yourself, in this digital age we live in a website is essential for any business to thrive and grow.
With clients and customers searching the internet for products and services, it is vital to your small business to have a website they can reach and learn about your product or service. For your small business to be profitable, you need to reach the highest number of prospects possible, and a website is the best way to do this.