I’ve just been asked to write a blog on – “The importance of having a website“.
In this day and age, having a website is even more important than Business cards and phone numbers were 20+ years ago. Even more important than the Yellow Pages were way back then . . .
But with the proliferation of cheap and even free website solutions, just having a website is no longer the key criteria.
Especially when you take into account the hidden costs and problems of those cheap or free websites.
What matters these days to the serious Business owner is what the website will do for them.
The reality is that most websites still do not pay their way, and add very little value to business beyond being and online brochure.
So here are some quick questions to ask yourself about your existing website, or when looking to build a new website.
Who is my target market?
Does my website developer understand who my ideal clients are, and how to attract them to my website?
In fact, when challenged on this, many business owners do not really understand who their ideal clients are . . . much less, how to attract and retain them.
So if you are serious about increasing sales, then your web development company should be able to assist you in getting clear on how to identify and then reach your ideal target market.
What message will engage my target market?
What are their pain points, and what solutions are they looking for?
So, you got some people to your website, but if they are not engaged with your message in the first five seconds or so, then you’ve probably lost them.
A clear statement of their problem or pain point, along with a solution statement following that, will keep them on your new website longer because they feel that you are talking directly to them.
How will your website build their trust?
It’s a well known fact that most people require 6 to 8 contacts, or even more, before feeling comfortable with making a buying decision.
That means 6 – 8 phone calls, messages, emails, conversations, product trials, website views, articles read, etc.
It can be less contacts for cheaper items, but it can also be many more contacts for more expensive items, or for the items that have a great impact on their life.
And it also varies depending on the type of person your ideal client is.
So what will your new website do to help you stay in touch with these people and build that trust and rapport that leads to a buying decision?
How will you build repeat sales?
The same thing applies here. People will tend to buy more, and buy more often, when you stay in touch with them, rather than just forgetting about them.
And those sales are much more profitable for your business, because you have not had a marketing spend in order to make those repeat sales.
So, how will your website help you to stay in touch with existing customers to increase repeat sales?
Is that all?
All of these very important questions relate to generating sales and profits for the business. But there are many other important questions to ask. e.g.
What will you do about security, upgrades and backups on my website?
All websites need security modifications and regular software updates, just like your iPhone does. And backups are imperative in case something does go wrong
What happens if I need help or support after the website is launched?
You want to know there will be somebody there to help you long after the website is launched. Otherwise you are on your own, which can be quite daunting but also stop you from getting the most out of your website.
Will I be able to manage my own website content, or will I have to pay someone to do that?
You must be able to manage your own website content and it must be simple and easy to do. Otherwise you are inviting problems with your website be coming out of date or expensive to maintain.