Sam Makad is a business consultant. He helps small & medium enterprises to grow their businesses and overall ROI. You can follow Sam on Twitter, Facebook, and Linkedin.
The benefits of a website are vast and can't be limited to these. Building a great website for your business is one of the most progressive choices you can make for your business.
Consider that around 88% of your customers will likely search for your product online before finally making a purchase, and you’ll realize how immeasurably important it is to build an impeccable social presence.
If you’re considering doing without a website and depending on other digital platforms, then you might want to stop in your tracks.
Your website is the backbone of your online presence. All your digital marketing efforts will usually direct your visitors to your website. Other digital platforms don’t negate the need for a website. Instead, they heighten it just as a website benefits greatly from being linked to the rest of your marketing platforms.
A professional website will prove to be a huge asset for your business, and here is why:
1. Augment Your Marketing Efforts
Your digital marketing efforts will depend on your website. That means your website has to be of great quality and designed to fulfill each part of your digital marketing strategy. This is why it’s such a good point to know how to design your website.
Every piece of content, ad, or any other communication you post online will lead the consumer back to your site. Social media, for instance, though a good way to communicate with customers, isn’t as effective in explaining your product or service as a website can be. You can only say so much on a social media site.
Above all, most purchases are best made through the site, so even if you’re able to gain a customer's engagement through social media, it remains a necessity to include a link that takes the client to your site to purchase.
Most of your other platforms are limited in space, but your website has that advantage. It can be a one-stop-shop for all things your business. A quick browse through your website should give a client what they’re looking for. A website can have an explainer video on the homepage if there’s a need to explain things at length.
Where text cuts it, there’s room for a blog, and you can include links to specific blog posts in your marketing content so that if clients need more information, they can refer back to the website.
Its central positioning helps the business directly and indirectly through helping other methods such as email marketing and pay per click (PPC) yield better through their link to the site. Besides, all your content needs to stay under one "roof," and a website is such a good place to do it to make your content as easily accessible as possible.
2. Improves Sales
While developing a website doesn't magically start to bring customers to your doorstep, it's, indeed, a great asset to invest in as you’re putting together a strategy to boost sales.
Your website is the platform for your business' exposure to the world, and this can lead to sales. Availability is important when it comes to making sales, and your site gives you just that. Your site is live 24hrs a day, and that means your clients can shop anytime they want.
If a potential client needs further clarification, there’s a chance what they’re looking for can be found by searching through your website, which frees you up from having to actively engage with all your leads consistently. The website will do the engagement for you.
Had your business been a brick and mortar building exclusively, services would end as soon as the salesperson goes home. With your website, the “salesperson” is there around the clock. The content on your page can give your clients additional information through the blogs and explainers on the site.
Here are some ways to prepare your website to make sales on your behalf:
- Know the market you’re trying to speak to. Know it so thoroughly and intimately that you can almost know their thoughts.
Sounds like a lot? Well, it's not really. All you have to do is to create personas that describe the type of clients you’re expecting to serve. Be specific with your personas. What job do they do? What suburb do they most likely live in? What about their level of education? Potential attention span? Make several personas, then start navigating your website as each one. You’ll see which parts of your web design still need optimization to accommodate which market segment.
Design is paramount. You’ll need to pick a theme that resonates with your identified market segment.
Design is not just that thing you choose to make your website look cool and modern. It's important to look cool and modern, but it's even more important to be functional and effective. How is your web design crafted in a way that supports the business? Everything is important, like color, button placement, and even font.
Find a good web developer you trust to do this job, or you can do it yourself by using a website builder tool. If you do opt to do it alone, then you’ll be responsible for choosing the right theme for your site. You’re looking for a tool that gives you as wide a range of themes as possible, and that provision is such a good point to keep at the fore when you’re trying to choose a tool. Have options; the more options, the better you can find the precise design your business needs.
- Your site should be able to load within a few seconds. To even think about making sales, you need to retain customers long enough to hear your case. Browse through your website and see what you’re about. But, if your site takes forever to load, a potential client might just move on to another site. Remember, when they searched on google, they were given more than one option. As soon as a client chooses you, they must not find a reason to leave.
- Your web's search engine optimization should be untouchable. Nothing should be found wanting about your keyword research and insertion into your website. Find the keywords in your industry, and use them in your website's content. Make sure your website is optimized well to rank high in search results. If you couple that with overall good content, you should be ready to expect to make sales through your site.
- Don't forget the checkout process. Conversion should be made as easy as possible. Don't overcomplicate the shopping cart. A person trying to navigate your shop must not find it difficult to make a purchase. Streamline this process as much as you can. Your cart and checkout process, in general, should be very easy to use and come back to after leaving the page or site briefly.
3. Boosts Credibility
In today's world, if a potential client searches for you online and doesn't find a website for your business, your credibility immediately plummets. Most businesses keep a website that details important information about them. Not having one might seem like you have something to hide.
Any purchasing journey will, at some point, require the customer to trust the seller. This is where your website enters to build this trust for you. Your content will tell the client what your brand is all about, what drives you, what's your main purpose, what you’re trying to give to your buyer, and more.
In short, it just tells the buyer a lot of reasons your product is a great choice for them. Your website is also there to help you establish authority. Your buyer needs to know that you’re the best at what you do, and what better place to do that than on your website and your website's blog?
4. Change Functionality Over Time
If, after a few years, you decide that your main goals right now are no longer relevant, then you can simply change your website's focus area. Its calls to action can be changed, as can be anything else. You can also decide to add new features through upgrades, plugins, add-ons, and widgets.
This is such a great thing for your business as you can be sure your website will continue to serve you even as your business needs to adjust.
5. Growth Opportunity
If you’re at a phase in your business journey when you’re looking for investors, a website can function as a great resumé for your business.
It can be a great place to point investors to for brand descriptions, achievements so far, and some future plans. In this way, it can bring in new business and help you grow the company.
A website can be a key asset for your business if you position it right.
It's, by no means, a magic wand you can wave in front of customers to make them buy from you. Instead, it's a very strategic tool that helps your business perform better at every stage of the sales funnel.
You can integrate it with your other digital marketing efforts to create a more effective marketing campaign through backlinks to the site. You can also boost sales through the website by creating it in a way that is optimized for conversion. You can improve your company's credibility and also have it function as your online resumé to investors.
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