No nonsense here. Straight to the list!
1. Beat the Competition: Over 40% of small businesses have yet to create a website and if you don’t have a site, folks will find your competitor first. More and more customers are bypassing the phone book and going straight to search engines to find the goods and services they require. Very few people reach for a phone book today, but instead will go to Google for business information or will type your business name into Facebook.
2. Instant Advertising: Traditional advertising is expensive and has definite limitations. Mailings incur printing costs, as well as postage. Radio and television have time limits and reach a largely disinterested audience. Newspapers limit your space, not to mention the drop in readership due to new technology. Yellow pages are expensive and your information cannot be edited for a year.
3. Control your Content: Most companies that have been in business for two years or more can be found through a search engine, but the pages that come up often do not belong to those businesses. We’ve all seen the “placeholder” sites that list a small amount of information that is often inaccurate. When you create your own website, you control the content and can edit all of your pertinent information within a few moments.
4. Give Back to Your Customers: Release coupons and special offers through your website directly to your customers. Plan a surprise sale or move merchandise that hasn’t been as popular as you had hoped. Learn who your customers are through maintaining an email list so you can reach them when you need to the most. Give them the opportunity to browse your site at their leisure and shop 24 hours a day.
5. Expand Your Business: You’re committed to your community. Now you can offer that same level of excellence in products and customer care to a new audience. No longer is it necessary to put up a new brick-and-mortar storefront to reach a new demographic. Do it today, online, with no additional cost.
Bonus Quick Tips
Tip #1: Be professional. A clear, concise landing page should contain basic information to draw your customers in. The average stay on a website is 30 seconds and that’s all the time you have to set yourself apart.
Tip #2: Tell your story. People no longer identify with the fanciest website that has the most outrageous graphics. They want to identify with you! Share why you started your business.
Tip #3: Be available. Respond to email inquiries in a timely manner. If you create a contact form, respond to those notices right away. Online customer questions are no less important than those from visitors to your place of business.
Tip #4: Brand your email. Customers need to feel they can trust the source of email contact. Email sent from free services such as Yahoo, Hotmail or GMail do not engender trust. By having your own email address using your domain name, you establish that trust.
Now you know why your business needs to be online.
Click here to learn how to do it!