Does My Business Need a Website?
Like any other business purchase decision you’ll want to carefully weigh the costs and benefits of a website. While for many a website will be hugely important, for reasons we’ll explore below, it may not always be necessary. Avoid falling into thinking ‘I should have a website’ and instead ask yourself ‘why should I have a website?’. This will help identify what you are looking to achieve with a website. Below are some factors to consider in answering that question.
- Your customers are there
89% of UK adults regularly use the internet according to The Office for National Statistics 2017 report. That rises to 99% for 16-34 year olds. As a business you need to be where your customers are.
- Would you trust a company without a website?
In a 2015 Verisign study 84% of respondents said they felt a business with a website was more credible than one with only a social media page, and 84% of small business owners agreed. If a consumer is considering purchasing from you a website is a key took to build up credibility with them.
- People buy from companies they know, like and trust
Following on from the above a website is a great tool to help your customers get to know, like and trust you. Providing useful information on your website is a great opportunity for consumers to get to know you better whether it’s a first introduction, or building on an existing relationship. If they find your site helpful, informative and accurate then you can quickly grow knowing into liking and then trusting.
- UK consumers spend more online per household than any other country
That’s according to a study by The UK Cards Association. There is a huge opportunity to expand your consumer base beyond your local area by selling online. While the prospect may seem daunting there are lots of effective tools available to help manage the logistics of selling online.
- 88% of consumers research a purchase online before buying instore
25% will do so regularly, those are big numbers! ‘Webrooming’, browsing online as you would in a showroom, before purchasing in a store is a growing trend. If you don’t have a website consumers won’t be able to find and consider you in this research stage. A website is also a great way to answer common customer queries which can help get customers through the door.
- 94% of B2B buyers do some form of research online before purchasing a product
Online research before purchasing isn’t limited to the consumer sector. This State of Procurement Study by Accenture points to the importance of an online presence in the B2B space too. It also highlights a need for more B2B suppliers to offer online payment options to compete with third party suppliers.
- Your website is a 24/7 365 days a year tool to promote your business
Unlike adverts which run for a finite amount of time with fixed content your website is your own asset and can be updated as needed; whether that’s to share new content, updated opening hours or promote an upcoming event. A website is available to communicate with your customers at any time they choose making it an invaluable service tool.
- A website opens the door to new cost effective marketing tools
Digital advertising and it’s many options can seem daunting to the uninitiated but its a powerful tool that shouldn’t be ignored. Imagine being able to advertise specifically to people searching for your product, re-engage with someone who didn’t complete their purchase on your site or tailor you ad content based on a consumers location, device or even what the weather is doing. All of this and more is possible with digital advertising. The targeted nature of digital also means the costs are very competitive compared to traditional channels. If this sounds like something you’d like to explore further please do get in touch
- 97% of small business owners recommend having a website
If you are still undecided then referring back to the same 2015 Verisign study 97% of small business owners surveyed would recommend having a website. That’s a pretty resounding peer recommendation.
Hopefully that’s helped you make up your mind or at least inspired some further questions. If you’d like to discuss anything in this article or possible website options for your business please do get in touch.