In this day and age where digital technology and the internet has influenced how we live and work. It is shocking to see how many businesses don’t have a website.
Small businesses might even be less connected than you thought.
About 60% of very small Canadian businesses don’t have websites, according to a recent study. Of those, only 12% have a facebook page.
That leaves a lot of small businesses relying on word of mouth to get the message out.
Why Your Business Needs a Website
Consider these Canadian 2016 facts from the Canadian Internet Registration Authority (CIRA)
- there are 32 million internet users in Canada
- 81.19% of the total population is online
- adults average 22.8 hours online per week
- 88% of users go on the internet daily
- 59% used social media regularly
- 46% of users do online shopping
- 43% used the internet for product or service research prior to buying
All of which means that there are a whole lot of eyes that could be visiting and interacting with your small business website – if you had one.
If you operate one of those small businesses that doesn’t have a website and these facts don’t persuade you to develop an online presence for your business, here are some more reasons.
Your Business Credibility
Think of your website as your online business address. This is where your customers, clients and associates go to find you on the internet.
If a customer finds you online, it gives them confidence that you are a proper business. If you have a professional image online, your small business gains instant credibility.
A website can be any size, but the basics of a website consist of the following pages. The Home page identifies what your brand vision is all about. The About Us page tells visitors all about you and what your business stands for. The Contact Us page informs everyone how to easily get in touch with you.
It legitimizes your business and improves your credibility. It gives your business an identity and is virtual proof it exists. Don’t be mislead into thinking a company Facebook page is enough to build your credibility.
A 2015 study reported that 84% of consumers believe that small businesses with websites are consequently more credible than businesses without an online presence. The study also concluded that 65% of consumers consider a company branded email to be more credible than a generic email account such as Gmail, Outlook, AOL, or Yahoo mail, etc.
To remain relevant and credible in today’s technology world, small businesses must invest in a website. Look at it another way, if all your competitors have websites and your business doesn’t, who do you think looks more credible?
Your Business Discoverability
Before broadband technology became widespread in 2004, websites functioned more like a brochure. But with the huge growth of the internet, influence of social media and the popularity of mobile devices, websites have become a crucial tool to build your business.
A study performed by Verisign also reported that 9 out of 10 consumers rely on the internet to locate and evaluate local goods and services. The businesses that had developed websites, as a result had a clear advantage considering discoverability.
The same survey found that 83% of the surveyed businesses that do have websites said their online platforms gave them a competitive advantage over businesses without websites.
With over 3.5 billion Google searches occurring each day. Many new customers could be finding and patronizing your small business. Business websites allow potential customers to access your business and learn about your products and service 24/7.
Think Local First
Quite often a small business owner will think they don’t need a website as they only provide products or a service within their local area. They do not need the global presence that having a website gives them. However nothing could be further from the truth. A website is a great way to build up a local following and develop great relationships with both current and potential customers
You may be local to some of your customers, but they may not like having to drive around to do business with you. They are just as likely to engage with you online as they will face to face. Websites are a great way to develop relationships locally, or that of someone halfway around the world.
Relating With Your Business
The ability to relate to a defined audience and build relationships is a huge benefit that comes from creating and maintaining a website. Using your website to tell a story about you and your business begins the relationship.
Understanding your audience and how your product or service could provide a benefit to their lives strengthens the relationship. Using your website to earn and retain a customer is the ultimate goal.
Consumers are more likely to visit a website to learn about your business rather than they are to pick up the phone and call. Replying to emails and social media comments is a great way to build trust and personalize your small business website.
Show Your Work to the World
Even if you prefer your market to be a small local world, a website is an excellent way to showcase your wares. Your website can have links to your portfolio or images of your products or services. Most importantly, you can display testimonials from your satisfied customers. This gives your business credibility and inspires confidence in your work.
Whether we like it or not, the world we live in has gone digital. Just take a look around, businesses that not that many years ago, didn’t even have 1 computer on site, and are now totally reliant on them for day to day operations. Computers are everywhere now, in fact most of us carry one with us everyday in the form of a cell phone.
Which leaves us to the choice, we either adapt to this new digital world or we get left behind.
The days of people pulling out the printed copy of the Yellow pages to find your business are gone forever. Having a website for your business is a necessity in the digital world we now live in. It is no longer just a nice thing to have a website, it is now a necessity for business. By not having a website puts your business at a disadvantage over your competition.
Don’t let your business stay in the dark another day! Get your website up and running today.
If you already have a website and are not receiving the benefits we just talked about. You need to have us do a web analysis of your online presence.