We, at CinchLocal.com, are among many marketing professionals who believe that a small business's website is one of its most powerful advertising tools. Any business can gain a significant advantage and improved image with a maintained and well-built website. If your business currently doesn't have its own website, there are many benefits you're likely missing out on including more sales, more prospects/leads, brand enhancement, and enhanced customer service.
Recent research has indicated that roughly half of all global small businesses are currently operating without websites. If your small business is one of them, here are 20 benefits that you're missing missing out on . . .
1. Expanding Your Horizons
When you operate solely out of your brick and mortar location, your reach is limited to your local audience. By going online, your reach is expanded on a global scale. Likewise, your website makes it possible for potential prospects to gather information about your business and make purchases at literally any time.
2. Cutting Back on Distribution and Printing Expenses
Unlike information on printed materials, you can change the information on your website at any time. Businesses that utilize CMS (content management systems) with their websites can make substantial changes to their content in no time, and at no cost.
3. New Customer Relations
Rather than your customers referring their friends and family to you by way of a company address or phone number, they can simply refer using your URL (website address).
4. Ease of Use
If your website remains updated, easy to use, and maintained, it will remain useful to your customers. At CinchLocal.com, we can help you keep your website as accessible as possible.
5. Capture Reviews
Connect your website with Angie's List, Google + page, Facebook Page, Yelp, TripAdvisor, etc... to capture reviews, gain trust, provide excellent customer service to drive more customers to your business and back again – it's word-of-mouth marketing at its finest!
6. Creating Your Own Online Identity
With a short website domain, such as www.yourbusiness.com, you can establish a solid brand identity online.
7. Increasing the ROI of Your Marketing
Once your website has been added to your promotional materials, your customers will have another simple way to easily access your business from anywhere, at any time.
8. Increasing Productivity
Many small business owners see an increase in their productivity after employing the help of a website. Customers can easily pull basic information from a small business's website rather than spend time emailing, calling, or visiting the physical brick and mortar store location.
9. Enhancing Your Reputation
Become an expert in your industry on a global scale by taking your expertise online. You can write articles and posts on your own website, and you can even guest post in other areas of the web to share tips and advice, as well as route leads back to your own domain.
10. Serving Customers More Efficiently
With a website, your customers don't have to wait until regular business hours to request or obtain information. Auto-responders and forms can assist customers 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
11. Providing an Education Portal
If customers need advice about your services or products, they can easily refer to your website. There's no longer any need to supply the same advice several times in a row to various customers.
12. Use Media to Sell Your Products and Services
With an online presence, you can demonstrate your products and services for customers who are browsing from the comfort of their own homes. For example, you could add photos, videos, and detailed guides to your website so that customers can learn on their own accord.
13. Use Social Media to Sell Your Products and Services
Build a social community around your brand by creating a Facebook Page, Twitter, Google +, Pinterest, Instagram, etc... to gain trust and emotionally connect with your potential clients. You do this by listening, being helpful, showing transparency and connecting them with valuable or entertaining resources.
14. Smooth Stream of Communication
With a website, your customers will be able to provide feedback quickly, contact you, and even inquire about product availability.
15. Easy Access to Store Details
When customers need to quickly find your business's phone number or address, they can use your website to do so.
16. Appeasing International Prospects
If a customer from Hong Kong wishes to order a product or service from you, you can satisfy his/her needs quickly with a website.
17. Affordable Market Research
Rather than spending money on surveys and polls, you can place these elements right on your website to tap the minds of your customers.
18. Hiring New Employees
Using your website, you can advertise available positions and widen the margin for potential applicants. Likewise, applicants and obtain information and apply online.
19. Email Communication
At CinchLocal.com, we'll help you set up personalized email along with your new website. Everyone employed by your company, including yourself, will receive personal email addresses for corresponding with suppliers, customers, etc.
20. Ease of Changing Locations
Lastly, you'll find it a lot easier to keep your customers in the know if you ever decide to relocate. Not only will you be able to inform your customers of your location change via your website, but your prospects can still obtain information and do business with you online.
With so many websites being launched daily, the consumer has to sort through many sites to find the right product or services to meet their needs.
Consumers feel like it is their responsibility to uncover as much information as possible on a service, product or subject in record time. A company only has a few seconds to make an impression with their small business website design.
Research shows that the company website only has seconds to hook the restless consumer. The customer glances over the content, often spending less than a minute on a page. The average visitor will read less than 20 percent of the content published on the website. With only a quarter of the information being digested by the typical visitor, a company must make sure to capture the person’s attention with eye-catching design. The right value proposition and aesthetics can determine whether or not a person decides to remain on a website.
When the person lands on a website they have a checklist of questions they want answered. They want this information to be easily accessed and they don't want to have to work to locate the following relevant information . . .
Professional small business web design can make a difference in how the customer perceives a brand. According to research, customers form an initial opinion about a company quickly by viewing a website. In less than 50 milliseconds, a customer forms the initial gut feeling for the company while viewing the website. Customers who viewed the website as attractive were more likely to view other aspects of a business favorably.
The basic website used to serve as a means to gather more information about a business. Now the website is viewed as an extension of marketing and branding. The appearance of the website says a lot about the brand. Visitors stay when they land on an attractive site and view the brand in a positive light when the content is presented in a certain way. If the typical consumer forms an opinion on a brand in less than a minute, then the professional small business web design must be used effectively to make the best impression.
If you are in need of affordable website design for small businesses please contact CinchLocal today!
Small business website design is necessary for companies to gain visibility on the web. Companies that hire agencies to perform this task have an edge on the competition. Here are seven deadly web design mistakes that should be avoided:
1.) Neglecting to Hire an Agency
Unless you have an in-house guru, it is probably best to leave web design to the professionals. Websites must keep visitors interested with content, images, and charts and graphs. When an agency is not hired, professionals may not meet all the requirements of Google’s algorithms.
2.) Identify Your Target Market
Most small businesses are so concerned with designing a website that they neglect to first research the target audience and design the website based on the research. Younger target markets tend to use smartphones; so, websites must be designed to load fast on smartphones. Older target markets, for instance, may require larger fonts so information can be easily read.
3.) Failing to Design for Smartphone Technology
Designs with numerous slow-loading images may not be compatible with smart phones. When websites do not load on smart phones, companies lose business because visitors are not willing to wait for complex graphics to load.
4.) Static Content
Content should be dynamic, unique, relevant and intriguing to the target audience. Each paragraph should be succinct and consist of no more than four to five sentences. The content should be easy to read at a quick glance for the best results.
5.) Failure to Include a Clear Call to Action
Once your company has successfully attracted visitors to the site, it is imperative to get them to contact your company and purchase your product or subscribe for your service. Businesses should ensure that there is a clear call to action in order to get visitors to perform the desired action.
6.) Targeting Everyone
Targeting everyone wastes more money than targeting a single group of people with a need or want for the product or service.
7.) Budgeting Too Much or Too Little for Web Design
Web design agencies should be chosen on their ability to perform and not on the company’s price.
Pay Attention to These Steps For Greater Success
Small business website design is successful if these simple mistakes are avoided. Review the common mistakes and give your company a competitive edge over other companies.
The founder of CinchLocal, is a seasoned entrepreneur that has over 18 years of experience in search engine optimization and online marketing.