Do you actually need a website for your business? Does a business website make a difference in the era of social media, YouTube and other alternative platforms? Well, the answer is, YES, you do need a website for your business. A website that is created by a professional will have the hallmarks of a well-thought out design that will both improve your conversion rates and help you build your brand’s online presence.
While social media profiles and pages, does help, you are incentivised to advertise for results. And it’s only going to get more difficult as more businesses move online. In comparison, a website will help you build a digital footprint and let you do things like Search Engine Optimization, which gives you compounding results over time.
It is proven that over time, spending money on content marketing gives you better results than just running ads itself. If you can do both ads and content marketing, you’ll have an advantage over your competitors.
As a web developer who runs a small digital agency, I’ve handled a number of sites while helping clients run digital marketing campaigns online through the years. Our clients range from some small, local businesses to large multinationals. But overall, I still give them the same marketing strategy; that they need to have a professional website and a digital marketing plan.
Company Websites vs Social Media Channels
Many businesses that go online (and online businesses) are often caught in between the choice of investing in a website and investing on running paid digital marketing campaigns. But the website vs social media debate should not be happening as websites and social media should complement each other.
While small business owners could save on short-term costs by just having a Facebook Page or Instagram Profile, having a professional website for the business will help much. Read on to find out compelling below reasons why you as a business owner, should get started with a business website, today.
Reasons Why You Need A Website For Your Business
1. People Don’t Trust A Business Without A Website
Did you know that you lose potential customers by not having a website? Statistics have shown that 56% of people stated that they won’t trust a business without a website. Furthermore, 84% of today’s consumers thinks a website makes your business more credible than companies who only have social media profiles.
If you do not have much budget for a small business website, you can start with Wix or Squarespace. However, if you plan to grow your business, WordPress is a relatively affordable option. With a growing number of website builder software like Elementor and the Gutenberg Editor, the cost of business website ownership, is going down.
2. Having A Website Helps You Get Local Business
Having a website will help you get more business and potential customers. It is shown that 97% of people searched online to find a local business near them. And it makes sense. Imagine you’re new in town and need to find a plumber. Rather than looking for Yellow Pages, you would Google for a nearby plumbing service.
We have seen this evident with some of our clients, as their local SEO-optimized websites generate a constant stream of customers. Some even see a 300 to 400% improvement in results, once they have done some technical SEO fixes, followed by a comprehensive content strategy and an improved website design.
3. Improves Credibility
Credibility is a big word in the world of business. And having a professionally designed website will increase your credibility in the eyes of prospective customers. 75 Percent of consumers admit to making judgments on a company’s credibility based on the company’s website design.
It isn’t expensive to purchase a beautiful website template off marketplaces such as ThemeForest, which will help you get started on your website journey. If you have the budget though, do invest in hiring a web design company or a professional web designer as they would be able to help craft a custom design website that helps grow your brand.
4. Builds Your Brand
A good website should be an essential part of your branding strategy. Whether it’s building your personal brand or your company’s brand, a website can help you be on top of the minds of consumers. This is important to improving your brand equity in a crowded world where generic brands don’t get much traction.
5. Displays Your Expertise
Other than brand building, a business website can help display your expertise to the prospective client. All you need to do is include a blog section and blog consistently on industry leading topics.
Over time, your blog posts will generate search engine traffic that demonstrates your expertise to people looking for answers.
6. Helps You Answer Basic Questions Easily
Alongside the benefits of displaying your expertise to potential clients, writing your blog posts consistently will help you answer your client’s basic questions easily.
This happens because every blog post that you write, will be indexed by search engines, letting you’ll answer less basic questions as most of them will read through the blog posts before subscribing to your service / product.
7. Helps With Customer Service
The business website can also help existing customers. With a frequently asked questions section, you will be able to reduce the number support tickets. This will lighten the load for your support team and helps reduce costs.
8. Expand Your Working Hours
No, I don’t mean work longer hours. Rather, your website can work for you even while you sleep. With a well designed website and content that answers the queries of your website visitors, the website works to grow your business even while you sleep.
That’s why I always emphasize the need for a great website to clients. Not just a brochure site, but a website that is grounded on a long term marketing strategy that works.
9. Social Media Reach is Diminishing
Did you know that it is increasingly difficult to get organic reach via social media channels? And did you know that the cost of ad spend has been going up while results remain stagnant? In short, if your digital marketing strategy involves putting up a few facebook ads or Google ads, it would be wiser to switch strategy to having a website.
While Search Engine Optimization is getting competitive, done right, it is still an amazing source of traffic for businesses. Furthermore, if your target audience include a lot with b2b buyers, optimizing your company website for search engine performance will get you better results than spending money on social media ads.
This is because, while the average consumer tend to scroll through social media during their free time, b2b buyers tend to search for suppliers via the search engine.
10. Let’s You Retain Visitors and Potential Customers
By including things such as push notification, email marketing (newsletters) and chatbot marketing, you can retain visitors and potential customers. Newsletters are not affected by trends nor shareholder demands, which makes it a powerful tool in the face of the changing social media landscape.
11. Display Your Best Reviews and Testimonials Easily for Social Proof
Yes, you can print them up and display them in your office, but it is on the website that your customers’ reviews really shine. While most people are reluctant to buy from an unknown vendor, social proof will let you differentiate your business from your competitors.
12. Websites Are Affordable
Gone are the days where it takes an expert to build a proper site. With WordPress, Wix and Squarespace, you can easily put up an affordable and professional business website. Of course, if you have the budget, get a professional web designer or web design company to flesh out a great website that you can use for your marketing strategy for years to come.
13. Keep Your Customers Updated
While you can post updates to social media, there are some posts that makes more sense to have on your business website instead. Things like dividend, hiring of staff, upcoming projects and mundane stuff that won’t get much social media traction, is better published on the site as latest news.
14. Websites Lets You Own Your Media
If you haven’t heard of content marketing, you should consider getting into it. A proper content marketing strategy will grow your business website’s audience and authority. Executed well enough and you will have an affordable media channel, instead of having to pay for ads.
15. Websites Are The Center of Your Digital Marketing Efforts
Finally, the business website should be the center of your digital marketing efforts. While it is nice to have multiple social media channels, you don’t own these channels and can be adversely affected with algorithm changes. Furthermore, you can do a lot more with a website than without one.
The Bottom Line: Your Business Need A Website. Not Having One Will Cost You More Long Term
We hate to tell you so later on, so we’ll put it out in the open. You need a business website. Period. Even if you are just starting out and finances are tight, get a simple business website designed by a web designer. Once your business has stabilised, you can invest on a more robust website.
Personally, I would recommend starting off with WordPress. While you do need to spend a bit on security, backups and a decent VPS server (Virtual Private Server), the cost is minimal. Once your business have stabilized, you can add on some premium plugins that will bring your site to the next level.