If you’re not running an online business, then you may wonder whether there is the need to have a company website.  It might feel like a lot of effort with no obvious benefit but in today’s increasingly online world it is worth giving serious consideration to joining the digital party.  To help you make a decision about whether you should invest in a business website and in creating an online presence for your company, take a look at the article below.

Benefits of a business website

Building an online presence is an investment – both in money and time.  It takes expertise, both to create a website but also to ensure it is visible and easy to navigate.  You may even need to pay someone else to provide the skills that you lack.  So it isn’t a decision to be taken lightly but it IS one which perhaps requires consideration of the longer term impact that having your business online will have.

A business website is a marketing tool

Having a business website is a bit like having your business card pinned up on a local supermarket notice board.  It’s a bit like that – but on a much, MUCH larger scale.  Your website can be as minimalist or as detailed as you like.  Potential customers visiting it will see details on your products and services, perhaps a blog showing your thought leadership, perhaps customer testimonials proving that you provide excellent value and perhaps most importantly, details on how to contact you or how to buy and pay for your services.

With a website you can show off your business in any number of ways and really bring it to life for people – on a global scale.

It helps more customers find you

When you’re looking for a particular product or service, where is the first place you go? For most of us, the answer will be a search engine.  If you’re not online, then all those potential customers who are looking for your specific service won’t be able to find you and will end up with one of your competitors instead.

In order to maximise the number of people who find your website, you will need to use Search Engine Optimisation (SEO).  This basically means using a number of tactics to ensure that your website figures as highly as possible in the search engine results page (SERP) when customers are searching for things in your niche.  Depending on your budget you can either research this online yourself or seek the guidance of an SEO expert.

Builds influence & credibility

The ability to direct potential customers or clients to a professional looking business website adds credibility to your business in a number of ways.  These days, it is generally an expectation that businesses will have a website and you may find that not having one will cause some potential customers to look elsewhere.  Equally, people like the opportunity to check you out and ensure that you’re a legitimate business before they place their trust in you.  A professional business website will go a long way to alleviating people’s worries.

Lastly, a business website gives you more reach in terms of getting your voice heard.  More and more businesses are now starting to blog.  This allows them to show that they are thought leaders in their particular niche. With credibility comes trust and with trust, comes sales.  It’s also worth mentioning that blogging gives a great boost to your SEO efforts!

Allows you to go global

Online selling means that your potential pool of customers is now much bigger. Depending on your business it can allow you to automate the whole sales process, from finding your customers through online advertising, gaining their trust and building a relationship through social media and email marketing right through to taking payment online. Making a passive income can be a reality as you literally make sales while you sleep!

These are just some of the benefits of having a business website.  There are many more, such as allowing customers to self-serve with online FAQs and strengthening your brand through an online presence.  With more and more services now which make creating a website easier than ever, it’s definitely worth making it part of your business strategy.