You Have No Business Website! Are You Going Out of Business?
Why Not Having a Business Website Makes No Sense!
Sit down, folks, and hang on to your seat. I have a very disturbing bit of news. A 2014 article by Inc.com revealed that more than half of all small businesses in the US have no business website! The 2017 Small Business Website Survey conducted by Clutch came in slightly better with just over one-quarter of all small business in the US having no business website. Let me make this absolutely clear. If your business has no business website you might as well close shop! If you have no business website you can’t stay in business! And this is not just my opinion.
“I don’t know how anyone today can realistically be in business without having a proper online presence. It’s kind of as important as having a professional looking business card. In my opinion you cannot effectively compete or market yourself without a website, you must have one.” Andrew Ruditser – MAXBURST
Every Business (Including Yours!) Needs a Business Website
I don’t care what kind of business you have, or what product or service you provide. There is someone looking on Google or Bing right now for exactly what you provide. And guess what? Because you have no business website there is no chance in hell that they will find you. Get it? Having no business website is the digital equivalent of never opening your store or restaurant. If you don’t open you get no customers. If you get no customers you get no money. If you get no money you go broke. And if you go broke your business closes. Am I getting through to you yet, or should I type slower?
Repeat after me: having no business website makes no sense! I talk with small business owners every day. And I am always impressed how passionate they are about their small business. And how hard they work to build, maintain, and run it. And it almost physically hurts me that many of them don’t understand how badly having no business website hurts their efforts. It is almost as if they have a mental block when it comes to having no business website. So let me start by outlining some reasons how any business can benefit from a business website.
3 Reasons Why Having No Business Website Hurts You!
If you think that you only need a business website to attract new leads you are missing the bigger picture. By having no business website you miss out on a number of other valuable opportunities. Let me explain why having a business website is essential for any business. And just so you can skip ahead if you like, lead generation is a reason for having a website, but not the most important! Here are my top 3 reasons why any business needs an effective website.
1 – A Business Website Establishes Your Identity
Recently I wrote about how you can build a kick-ass brand strategy. And a business website is absolutely essential if you want to establish a solid, reputable business identity. Not only does it establish your business as an authority in its niche; it also creates a public identity which consumers can connect with. Having no business website leaves your potential customers in the dark regarding who you are, and where to find you. You worked hard to establish your brand. Why on earth would you not want to show it off?
Are You a Legit Business?
There is another reason why having no business website is not good for your business. Yes, maybe people know about you already. Maybe a friend told them about your awesome lunch specials, or a neighbor recommended your freshly baked cupcakes, or the variety of toys for kids you carry. Wonderful, good for you! But many potential customers want to check your business out online as well. By having no business website you raise a red flag. Are you a legit business?
Think that never happens? I had people check our website on their smartphone while they talked to me. One of our clients, Portfolio Communications, told me their new website gives them the credibility they need to attract new business. So unless you have something to hide, which means you should not be in business in the first place, you need a business website.
2 – A Business Website Creates Perceived Value
My next reason why having no business website sucks is the value an effective business website creates for consumers. Let me ask you this: “Did you Google something today?” If you are like most of us you did. And what came up in the search results? You got it, a bunch of websites. And many of those are most likely business websites telling potential customers all about the wonderful stuff the business does and offers. According to a recent study 71% of all consumers look up a business online before they ever visit a brick and mortar business location. By having no business website I guess you don’t really want that extra 71% of potential customers. Well, to each his own! Good luck with that approach.
You Are Turning Potential Consumers Away!
By having no business website you are turning customers away before they even get to your business! Most consumers prefer to deal with a business that has an effective and established online presence. It establishes you as a trusted resource for your clients needs. Having no business website leaves them wondering if you are for real, or if you are a shady business. And guess what? If you make your customers wonder you tend to also make them wander, on to your competitor. I hope your competitors at least thank you for sending them all that extra business!
You heard about content marketing by now, correct? Having a business website allows you to create content that gets shared. And that allows you to put your business in front of a larger audience. Having no business website pretty much prevents you from creating a lot of effective content. Social media alone simply does not have that reach. An effective business website is the hub of your online marketing presence. Everything that you do online connects to your website. If you don’t have one you are missing out, plain and simple!
3 – A Business Website Generates Leads
This is the part you have been waiting for, isn’t it? Here it is! Having no business website effectively eliminates your primary source of inbound marketing leads. Zip! Nada! Not going to happen! Recently I had someone tel me: I don’t need a website, I get all my business through email.
Well, where the hell do you think these emails come from? An engaging and effective business website generates more inbound leads and sales than an entire sales team! And there are a few more benefits: a business website doesn’t take time off, call in sick, go on vacation, or hang out at the water cooler gossiping. No, an effective business website is out there working for you and your business 24/7!
How Will Consumers Learn About Your Awesome Business?
And if you have no business website how will you tell your customers about your business, about your unique value proposition, the difference you make for your customers, what your hours are, and anything else that may make them decide on your brand instead of your competitors.
We built a cool Parallax site for a small local restaurant in Seattle. Manu’s Bodega doesn’t need a lot more business; they are pretty busy already. But their new website has a slick feature, the ability to order and pay for your lunch online. Only got 30 minutes for lunch? Order and pay from your office, and bypass the line when you get there. Wanna bet consumers will love that feature? But you can’t offer this convenience if you have no business website.
What to Do if You Have No Business Website
Now you know the reasons why having no business website can really hurt your business. I really recommend that you get a business website as soon as possible. After all, you don’t want to miss out on all these valuable opportunities, do you? Unless your business is just a money laundering operation, of course.
Getting a business website is daunting for those business owners that have no business website, I understand that. You want to avoid bad web design agencies and get the most out of your web designer. And there are a number of things to consider before you develop your new business website.
Your Business Website Equals a Business Investment
You need to treat a business website as a major business investment. You chose your store or restaurant location on purpose, planned your inventory, store layout, and restaurant menu carefully, and made sure that everything was top-notch and would help your business succeed.
Unfortunately many business owners do not give the same consideration and importance to their business website. As a result many small businesses end up with a questionable business website at best, and a completely useless one at worst. You get what you pay for, folks!
Here are some very basic website budget considerations for you. Please keep in mind that your unique situation or business may require a different solution. You definitely should consult with a digital creative to help guide you through the process.
Very Basic Website Budgets
Less than $ 1,000.00
You get a very basic website with very little, if any, custom design, no strategic input, and no support or related services. Better than having no business website, but only barely. Really folks, this kind of website is not going to work in the long run, trust me!
Development platform: Adobe Muse, Wix or Weebly
$ 2,000.00 – $ 3,000.00
You can now expect some strategic insight, as well as input on information architecture and content strategy. At the higher end you can expect more custom design. This would be a better starting point for a professional service provider or small business.
Development platform: Squarespace or WordPress
$ 3,000.00 – $ 6,000.00
This is the spot most small business owners need to aim for. You can expect comprehensive input on the design and functionality of your business website. This means your site will actually support your business goals and social integration.
Development platform: WordPress
$ 6,000.00 – $ 10,000.00
This includes e-commerce functionality, payment gateway integration, custom forms, extensive strategy and content consultation, and custom design features.
Development Platform: Shopify, Magento or WordPress
$ 10,000.00 +
You can expect a lot at that range. This covers content creation, product or location photography, keyword research and on-page, on-site, and local SEO, and full social media integration.
Development Platform: Drupal, Magento, Shopify or WordPress
Try Our Awesome Website Cost Estimator
Not sure what business website cost factors to consider, and how they will affect the cost of your business website? Why not see for yourself? Come on, I know you are curious!
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We Build Business Websites!
Here at ESPRESSO.digital, we offer a full range of business website design and IT support services, including content strategy and creation, website design and development, search engine optimization, social media integration and business website hosting.
Contact us to learn more about our small business website services, and how our team can help you go from having no business website to an effective and engaging online presence that will energize your business.
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