Running your own business is no easy task. There are often unending to-do lists, errands and responsibilities that need to be taken care of. With this said however, one should always make online brand visibility a priority. Our contemporary lifestyle is jam-packed with an abundance of smart technologies and online communications. Individuals are regularly engaging online, and therefore more and more businesses are discovering the opportunities created by an online presence. Websites are a vital tool for creating a strong, professional online identities. With this in mind, consider these four reasons why having a proficient website is important.
Window Shopping isn’t what is used to be
As Forbes (2014) suggests, individuals are no longer strolling through crowded shopping malls and bustling side walks in search of their next purchase. Instead users are turning to social media and smart technologies to search, learn and purchase. With routine visits to Yahoo, Google, Facebook, Pinterest and other online sites, individuals are constantly seeking where to make their next purchase. You must ensure your business is well represented online. In this way, building a website allows you to catalog your products and services, engage with consumers and build a brand identity online. Once you have established a user-friendly, versatile website you can also begin launching your brand on various other online applications and platforms.
Business Websites Build Credibility with Contacts
Beyond having a URL address, you should also present your physical address and contact details on your website. Your website is a place where potential customers, current clients, and associates can find and contact you. A website is a platform that demonstrates who you are, what you have to offer, and how you go about conducting business. It is a first impression. If you do not have a beautiful, seamless website, you can be sure to lose potential opportunities.
A company with a unique domain makes an e-mail more credible and trustworthy. This allows a business to generate its own unique online identity that resonates with its physical brand. As Better Business Bureau suggests, more than 84% of consumers are more trusting of a company that has an online presence.
Providing Around The Clock Accessibility
You may need to rest, but your website doesn’t! A website provides 24/7 accessibility to your target audience. While your team has checked out for the day, your website is still working hard to generate leads for your business. Websites provide a place for returning clients and prospective buyers to learn about your brand and what you have to offer, at any time of day or night. For example, if you have an eCommerce website where you can showcase your products, consumers are able to make purchases as you sleep! In our fast-paced, instant society – convenience is key! By making it easy and accessible for consumers to browse and buy online, you are automatically generating possible leads and conversions.
The best part of business websites is that you don’t have to be physically present to reap its benefits. Your website functions as your very own personal digital sales person. It informs your consumers of the need-to-knows about a product and allows you to make quick, opportune sales.
First Impressions through your website
You are better off not having a website than having one that is slow, outdated and difficult to navigate. In today’s society, a website is often a consumers first impression of your business. As mentioned above, individuals are doing online research before they decide on making a purchase. Even if you are a general handyman business that depends on local foot traffic, there is a strong chance your potential customers are researching your business online. Therefore, it is imperative that one knows the fundamental elements all websites should possess. As seen in the illustration below, the design of your site is vital to the first impressions and credibility of a business.
Here are 4 vital elements to consider;
- Simple navigation – websites should be user friendly and easy to navigate. Nothing is more frustrating than exploring the entire website in order to find a simple piece of information (for example a contact number or a product price). A website is a guiding hand that presents you with relevant info quickly and easily. In this way, navigation menus should be easy to find and simple to explore.
- Attractive design – your website is representative of your business identity. Bold, striking and structured websites attract consumers. Use colours and images that align with, and contribute to your brand identity. A professional website has a balance between design and content, and is easy and quick to read.
- Helpful content – when a consumer arrives at your website, they are looking to learn more about your business. The content present on your site should be informative and helpful to users looking to learn about your products or services. A primary function of content is to highlight particular keywords that resonate with your business. This allows users to find you more quickly when searching.
- Search Engine Optimisation – your site content and structure needs to be optimised for Google search engine. Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) refers to the process of enhancing the quality of your website in order to increase visibility to users and online traffic.