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Why your business needs a website!

Can you remember the last time you didn’t use your computer or a smart phone over a 24-hour period? Don’t worry, neither can I. With the big shift to digital we spend a lot of time each day online whether is for professional or personal reasons.

So if you own a business and you’re not online, what’s it actually saying about your business? Chances are your competitors are online so potential new business leads are being lost daily if your business is nowhere to be found. Can you afford not to be online?

Customers are making purchasing decisions about buying from your business, without your knowledge. Every night between the hours of 8pm and 11pm internet usage increases. More posts are found on forums and social networks than any other time. As most businesses aren’t open for business at this time, your website is all that is left to affect and influence future sales. And you can’t rely on social media platforms alone to double as your online presence.

If you’re still unsure whether your business needs a website, here are some points to consider which will hopefully help with your decision process:
• Websites allow your business to be open for trade 24 hours each day, seven days a week, 365 days a year. It’s the salesman that never sleeps! No sick pay or annual leave required.
• Websites will get you discovered by potential customers. You never know who might be looking for your product or service.
• Websites broaden your audience by the masses. Do you offer a product or service that can transact via phone or email? Don’t restrict your business to where you are physically located.
• Websites can showcase your business as an employer of choice and attract the best people in your field for employment opportunities.
• People are already talking about your business on social media. Direct them to the truth.

If your business already has a website, ask yourself if it’s working for you or against you. Equal to walking into a poorly presented business with bad service and no signage or direction, is a poorly planned and structured website. No longer is it good enough to place a bit of text you have written yourself and throw up a few pictures with your logo. Online shoppers are hungry to be inspired and crave information.

We are all consumers of goods, so when trying to decide what content should or shouldn’t go on your website, think back to the last time you purchased something online. If you particularly enjoyed an experience, note what exactly it was you enjoyed, and on the contrary, note all the things that made up a bad experience.

Here are a few areas where businesses can go wrong:
• Their website is too complicated. You have no idea where you would find what you are looking for, and when you click on something you have no idea how to get back.
• Their website content is lacking or content heavy. Finding a happy medium between just your phone number and email address, versus a university thesis about your business is a challenge.
• Their website is stale. Updates are important so make sure you add new content regularly. A blog is the perfect platform to do this.
• Their website is boring. Spark interest on the home page to keep visitors interested and wanting to click further into your site. The average page visit lasts a little less than a minute, meaning they only have time to read a quarter of the text, so make what you say worthwhile.

Simply building an amazing website is not the end of the road. You have to ensure you’re taking the right steps to drive traffic to your website, making sure you are on the shopping list when someone is looking for a product or service you offer. And lastly, tell the world about it! Add your website address to your advertising and marketing collateral to get the word out there.

That’s it for now. I have something I need to Google!

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