Do I need a website?
business really need a Website?
every small business needs a Web site.
very busy owner of a handyman business — he's fully booked for the next
three months — tells me he's not interested in hiring employees and
growing into a multi-person company. He just wants enough work to earn a
good living, and he has plenty of work. His business grows by
word-of-mouth. Customers don't need to find his office; he works at their
homes. If ever there was a business that did not need a Web site,
this was it.
"no" . . .
I've heard many small-business owners say they think
they "should" get a Web site. They're not quite sure what they
will do with it, but they've been told they should have one.
In most cases, they're right. A Web site can be an
important marketing tool for almost every small business, but there are a
If you have as many customers as your business can
handle and you have no desire to grow larger (as with our handyman), then
there's no point in marketing on the Web.
Alternately, if you are really certain that potential
customers won't use the Internet to find your product or service, then you
can safely skip the Web. One example might be a convenience store, where
drive-by awareness literally drives all customer traffic. For most
businesses, that assumption is getting tougher to make, at least in the
United States, where over 158 million people have Internet access.
a big "yes"
There's no question that a Web site is more
mission-critical for some businesses than others. Companies trying to
reach customers in different locations (think hotels or tourist
attractions) or who have products that can be shipped to customers far
away (think flowers, handmade dolls, telephones, etc.) obviously need to
have an online presence.
But local businesses (dry cleaners or shoe repair
shops, for example) also can benefit from a Web site that shows their
location, lists their services or offers special promotions.
And woe to those who think they don't need a compelling
Web site because they serve other businesses rather than retail consumers.
Many businesses search for new suppliers online, then order from them that
In short, if you want more customers, you should be
online, regardless of your industry.
online marketing tool
For most small businesses, a Web site is rapidly
becoming a basic requirement of a marketing plan. A site can help you
reach one or more of the following goals:
Help customers find you in
the offline world – your office, your storefront, your phone number.
Help persuade customers that
you have the right service or product for them
Help sell products online,
even across different marketplaces, to retail customers or other
A simple site helps customers find you
The simplest possible Web presence is a one-page site
that tells people how to find your business in the "real" world.
It should include:
A good Web Address that
relates to your company name and business.
Your business address,
complete with directions and a good map.
Your business phone number,
along with fax numbers if relevant.
Your hours of operation.
A clear and enticing
description of what your business offers to customers.
better marketing, create an expansive site
If you're interested in active marketing for your
business, you can expand your Web site to make it a more robust online
In this scenario, the Web site's job is to convince
customers to take that next step: Buy the product online, call you to
place an order or set up an appointment, or drive to your office or
storefront. Your site is essentially your online marketing brochure, one
that's more effective than a printed marketing piece. Web sites enable
customers to dig deep into the information they care about, without
overwhelming them with the stuff they don't want or need to know. That's
hard to pull off in a paper brochure.
You can approach crafting the Web site as you would any
other marketing brochure. Use color, graphics, photos and words to get
across four key things about your business:
What you provide for
What kind of customers you
focus on and can serve best..
How your business is unique
from others who provide the same product or service, so customers can
decide if your solution is the right on for them
The personality or brand
essence of your business – what your company stands for.
So yes, for good reasons
Unless you have all the customers you can handle, a Website can be a good marketing investment. Find a domain name that's appropriate for your business and beef up your marketing arsenal with a compelling Website. Are you ready to started being successful online? The best way for you is to have a professionally build website.