“How important is a website? I’ve agonised over it for months and can’t seem to get it together?” – Ken Helmers
Here are some interesting facts…
According to Netcraft, an internet monitoring firm which has been measuring website growth since 1995, in November 2006 there were 101,435,253 websites with domain names and content. This figure is consistently rising – and fast.
So, to answer your question, yes, I think ALL businesses – new and ‘old’, small and big – should have some kind of web presence. Don’t miss out on this growth!
Even though having a website isn’t (yet) a requisite for doing business; it certainly makes sense to have some kind of web presence in order to get or remain competitive in today’s fierce marketplace.
What’s more, marketing experts are predicting that the number of online consumers will grow by about 50% in the near future.
So, I guess the real question is can you afford to be left behind?
Even a simple website or blog presence will do. Just something that allows your potential customers, business partners, investors and employees to find out more about you quickly and easily.
Here are just some of the benefits of having an online presence:
→ You open your doors wide open to an international customer base – tapping into the multi-billion global marketplace makes good business sense.
→ With the use of relevant images, sound and animation combined with magnetic copy your clients get a real interactive feel of doing business with you.
→ Communicating your message through a web presence can be a lot less expensive than traditional media.
→ It offers an easy, convenient way for people to do business with you. The last time I bought tickets over the net (cinema tickets, FWIW), I did so from the comfort of my sofa.
→ You can always keep your product/service information up to date and fresh. If you were to reprint a new offline brochure, the cost could be quite steep. With the web, it’s instant and free to change details.
→ Your information is available to clients and prospective customers 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year.
→ You can sell direct and hang up the phone. Well, almost. With the web, you can change a “just looking” mindset into a “I’m buying that!” one through the use of persuasive, engaging words. It’s your salesman in print, really.
→ Your website’s URL can be put on other promotional material so that people always have a way of finding you.
→ You can collect email addresses – and potential new customers – with a website.
→ It shows people you are serious about doing business.
→ A website can take orders for you.
→ It makes for an excellent and efficient marketing support tool.
For me, having a website really comes into its own when I’m on the phone, for example. If a potential client asks whether I have any testimonials I can show them, I can say, “If you’re hooked up to the web, I can show you them right now.” They type in the link and it’s all done and dusted in a few seconds. The first time I tried something like this, I was impressed by the sheer ease and speed.
Getting started on the web needn’t be a daunting task. There are plenty of host providers who will provide ready-to-go web templates. You just fill in the blanks for the text areas, and upload your website. And, hey presto, you’re open for business online. 😉
Want to use this in your ezine, blog or website? No problem! Just let me know. I’ll send you a short resource box/bio to include at the end of the article.