It can be tempting to put off building a website for your new business. Money is tight. Covid has smacked us all, and your funds just don’t stretch that far yet. But a website could be exactly the tool you need to start generating income in your business.
You can start small, but you can also start smart. Draw up a strategy of how you will build your website in phases if you have to, but make sure you start now, and have a concrete plan of how you will grow it as soon as humanly possible.
While you might not be able to afford a fancy website now, not having one is the fastest way to destroy any business in this era of online searching and shopping.
1. A website address is one of the first things customers look for
The world has grown accustomed to looking online FIRST for goods and services. If customers see adverts, or social media posts, or articles (online or offline), and want to learn more, the first thing they look for is a website address. If you don’t have a URL, your business is perceived as small fry, insignificant, and unable to manage their requests. (Have you ever looked to see if your domain name is available?)
2. A website gives your business credibility
Every business should have a website where they share information about their products and services, how and where to buy them, what users thought of them, the background of their business, and how to get in contact with them. If your business is the only one without a website, you will lack credibility and customers won’t trust you. These days, it’s the same as not having a phone number. If you don’t have a website, does your business even exist? It’s so easy to register a domain and put up even a simple landing page to start, so if you haven’t got that to show to your customers, they will lose all faith in doing business with you.
3. Your website makes sales for your business
You are not working 24 hours per day, seven days a week, but your website is. It’s always online. If it’s setup correctly, it can work practically independent of you, which means it can be selling your products and services while you sleep – literally! Even if visitors can’t complete the entire purchase online, your website will nurture their experience and capture them as a lead for you to follow up on later and make the sale. These days, everyone is searching for their next purchases online. If you don’t have a presence there, you are missing a potentially massive source of new customers and income.
4. It’s the hub of all your business’ social media activity
There are many great ways to use social media, but one of the most effective ways to turn a viewer or follower into a customer, is to capture their contact information so you can lead them into a sales funnel. This means that your social media campaigns almost always funnel people toward your website so you can capture their email address by offering them something valuable in return, like a free eBook or a discount.
Your website is the central hub of all your social media activity. It is the perfect place to send all your followers if they want to buy from you, or to learn more about your business before they buy. You should constantly be looking to convert followers into subscribers, so you have their email address (and consent to contact them) in case your social media account is ever shut down or hacked. This has happened to so many prominent brands over the years. Losing a large, nurtured social media fanbase overnight can devastate any business, and sometimes destroy it altogether.
5. Your website allows you to interact with and educate existing customers
Do your customers call your office to find out how your product works, or what your returns policy is, or how to reset their password, wasting the time of your hardworking staff? Your website should provide all this information (and MUCH more) so it’s available to customers at any time of the day or night.
Your website is a way for people to learn about and engage with your product or service, without any extra input from you. This makes it an incredible time saver! It’s also the perfect platform to launch new products, highlight product features, introduce your team to your customers, or to allow customers to contact your support team and keep track of their responses.
A good website is a wealth of valuable information and should be cultivated so the customer has every answer they could ever need, on hand, 24/7.