Having a Website: What are the Advantages for Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs)
Website – Creating a website isn’t a simple task, especially for businesses that are just starting out. Aside from representing a cost for the company, it also requires semi-constant updates, maintenance — investments in both time and labor. That’s why it is sometimes difficult for an SME to own a website.
However, not having a website today represents a real handicap for any type of company. The advantages a website represents are almost innumerable, and you can’t do without them. In this article, we’ll go over some prominent ones.
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The Best Method of Communication Right Now
If you think that having a website is not a very powerful communication tool, you are wrong. Of course, each communication method has its own advantages, and some communication methods might be more suitable for your company than others. But a website, at the present time, is essential!
Why? Well, what do you do when you need a product or a service? When do you need an opinion or advice? You take out your smartphone, and you do a Google search for companies, services, and products that will fulfill your needs. You’re not alone — the majority of the developed world uses the internet for the same purpose. You won’t be visible in these searches if your company doesn’t have a website.
But if you create a competent website, your company and your brand will be put forward for Internet users to browse, use, and even purchase items from. Depending on how well-designed your website is, you can see impressive growth after going online and providing your services and products over the net.
A Showcase for your Company
Your website is your company’s portfolio accessible from anywhere, anytime and by anyone. When you know that 76% of people in the Western world connect to the Internet every day, it is difficult to survive in our very competitive business environments without leveraging a website.
Your website will allow Internet users to get to know you, your brand, your company, your products, your services. They no longer need to call you, they no longer need to visit your physical store, and they no longer need to go through hoops to access your newest products and promotions. You can contact a competent developer to help you build an eCommerce website for your business, it would be one of the best investments you’ve made: https://aaronknight.com.au/ecommerce/magento-developer/
Acquire New Customers
The final point of a web strategy of any competent company: the acquisition of customers through the website.
Your customer searches on Google for a service (or a product), comes across your website, finds something interesting and decides to contact you to buy the solution/service you offer. This should be the cycle each one of your visitors goes through, ideally.
Sadly, however, it is impossible to create the perfect website that will awe and appeal to every one of your potential customers — through testing, optimizing, and research, however, you can slowly improve the quality of your website and create something truly indispensable for your customer base.
What do you think of a company that does not have a website when you search for it on Google? Difficult to know what to think of it simply because it will be incredibly hard to find information on it, and if a potential customer can’t find anything about you online, they probably won’t trust you and will opt for one of your competitors.
A website allows you to be more credible by allowing people to easily discover you — to get to know you and your products. This will slowly help you build your brand, and before you know it, you have recurring customers purely getting to know your products and services through your website.
Answer Questions from Customers and Prospects
Think about it, when you first visit a website, you probably have a lot of questions about it right? Especially if you’re going to make a big purchase, you’d want to know about the company, its portfolio, size, services, products, and more. Below are some common topics that potential customers wonder about:
- Information about the company and its owner.
- Information about products and services.
- Information about terms of service.
- Information about limited-time sales and delivery time.
Having a website allows you to answer these frequent questions that are (almost) always the same with relative ease.
It is a win-win scenario: your customers and prospects will be satisfied because they will have found quick answers to their questions and you will have saved time and money by not having to answer the same ten questions hundreds of times through email or phone.
Drawbacks of Building a Website for Your SME
Although the points we touched on above are all very positive, it should be noted that having a website also has some drawbacks that should not be overlooked.
Your Site Must be Professionally Designed
What’s the point of a website if it doesn’t appeal to your potential clients? What’s the point of a website that doesn’t appear on search engines? What’s the point of a website that takes a minute to load? The answer in all three cases is a single word: nothing.
If you want a successful business website, it is imperative that it should be professionally designed. Your site must meet several criteria allowing it to please both site visitors and search engines (Google in particular).
Since it is very unlikely you would have the technical know-how to create a high-quality website, We usually advise business owners to entrust the creation of their [website] to a professional (internal or external) so that it can meet high standards that allow your business to be competitive.
Your Website Must be Up to Date
What can be more annoying than coming across a [website ]with incorrect information because the company was too lazy to update it? If a user visits your website, orders a product … and it is a product that you no longer offer… You will make a very bad first impression on this person and will make him/her angry.
Moreover, if your [website] is not up to date and presents information that’s a few years old, you not only will not look credible to your visitors, but even search engines will penalize your [website] and slowly rank it lower.
But, here’s where the downside comes in: maintaining a [website] and constantly keeping it up to date can be quite costly (both labour and money). Depending on the size of the [website], you might need to spend tens of work hours each month on ensuring it is consistently up to date. This is a significant commitment that you need to keep in mind.