Posted on April 26, 2018 by Libby Young, Falls Media, LLC.
Yesterday, after watching an incredibly long track meet, I went to order a pizza and wings for my family. I searched on my phone for the pizza company that a friend had recommended. The link from Google redirected me to a Facebook page. The menu was hard to find and incomplete. Rather than waste anymore time, I switched course and googled another pizza company that had a website and an easy to read menu. This got me thinking. How many small businesses are unknowingly losing potential customers due to the lack of a website or a poorly designed site? Here are five reasons small businesses should be investing in their website now more than ever:
Customers Expect It. Consumers have expectations. One expectation is that your company has a website that describes the product or service they are researching. Finding a Facebook page rather than a website, turned me off to that pizza company even though their pizza had been highly recommended by a friend. I also had to drive 5 minutes out of the way which I initially had been willing to do. It's not just that the company didn't meet my basic expectation, it's that they were making it too hard for me to complete my task. My basic expectation was that I could easily find their website and easily peruse their menu. Fortunately for me, the next pizza company I googled met my expectations and I ordered from them instead.
Competition. It didn't take me very long to find a different company who met my expectations. The majority of consumers when considering a product or service will visit the company's website first. A study of consumer's purchases by Episerver found that "98 percent of shoppers have been dissuaded from completing a purchase because of incomplete or incorrect content on a brand’s website." If consumers can't find the information they are searching for, like me, they will move on to another website.
Always Open for Business. Most small businesses can't afford to hire personnel to be in the office and staff the phones 24-hours a day. A website gives you the opportunity to promote your products and services even when the lights have been turned off and the doors have been locked. A survey by Workarea found that primetime online shopping peaks at 8pm. If consumers are researching your company at 8pm, will you be there to answer their questions? An effective website can do this for you.
Get in the Running. 92% of consumers looking at your website for the first time aren't there to buy. Instead they are there to research and compare products, services, and prices. If they can't find you in a Google search, you won't make the cut. Who will they find instead?
Instant Credibility I often have clients come to me for the first time unsure of why sales have been declining in recent years. Without a website you are letting others tell your story. By having a website you gain instant credibility that you are a legitimate company in the consumer's mind. More than that, you get to tell people the great features about your company. Without a website, someone else may be telling the story for you. Hopefully it's all positive, but what if it isn't?
The good news is that creating a website can be painless. There are many sites that make it relatively easy to create your own website. And, if you don't feel confident in web design or like many small business owners, just don't have the time, then there are plenty of web development companies that will create a website for you. Ask around, compare prices, research web development companies online and review their portfolios - you know...check out their website.
Web Developer & Digital Marketing Manager, Falls Media LLC
216 224 6519