Selling your services and products as a business owner is your number one goal so you need to use as many different tools to help you succeed. One of them is creating your own business website and in this episode I share my top 3 reasons why. I know that you want to stand out from your competitors and you want to offer your potential customers the best experience possible so having an online presence is essential; a website should not be an afterthought, it should be your every thought when talking business.
INTRO: Hi and welcome to the first episode of Help! My Website Sucks podcast. I’m Amy Gumbrell, a freelance web designer and I’m excited to get started. I absolutely love working with websites but I love talking about them even more so I’m really chuffed you’re here and hopefully you’ll stick around and listen to future episodes. In fact please do feel free to share, make sure you hit follow and more importantly come and say hi on social media. I’m @twocowsweb. I’d like to share some of my own experiences as a web designer and some of the common questions and issues that pop up again and again. This episode is all about why you need a website. So let’s get stuck in.
There are some things in life that you can simply count up on such as getting a stinky cold day one of your holidays OR Waiting in for a delivery all day only to hear the doorbell ring when you’ve just sat down with a well deserved cup of tea. Much is the same in my world of web design. I always get asked the same questions and one of them is- Why do I actually need a website Amy?? There are many reasons and I could simply list them all here but you don’t have all day to listen and I certainly don’t expect you to so instead I’ve broken them down and have come up with my top 3 reasons and in no particular order, here they are!
So let’s get the obvious reason out of the way first – my top reason particularly if you’re a business for why you need a website is so that you can sell your products or services. This may be in the form of an online shop selling physical products or selling tickets or courses. If you’re a service based business you may want to give information about your services, show off your portfolio of recent work or simply offer people a way to contact you and access your services. In fact over the course of the ‘I’m not going to talk about it’ pandemic the benefits of having a website as a way of generating business became more and more apparent. For many who usually delivered their service or sold their products in person face to face in real life simply couldn’t do that anymore and it was a sink or swim situation and having a website really helped them to continue trading.
As you can access websites at any time of day from anywhere in the world, having a website can not only facilitate sales but potentially increase them. This is made even more attractive if you set your website up with search engines in mind. People love to research new brands using search engines such as Google typing in only the service or product they are interested in buying. They aren’t specifically looking for you but if you’ve got a website and adjusted the content and finetuned it using SEO tactics, you will be actively attracting new customers with your website. And this brings me nicely to the second of my top 3 reasons why you need a website. Control. A few weeks ago we had the big social media crash of the year. Suddenly businesses were scrabbling to understand what they could do to retrieve customer info they had tucked away in their social media accounts. Sadly many businesses came to realise that they could do absolutely nothing until Facebook had fixed the issues. This is also the case if a website goes down but there are ways you can safeguard your website so that if there are any issues, you can actually do something about it on your own terms.
Of course with social media you don’t own it. So you don’t get to decide how your content is seen by your potential customers. You don’t get to decide how they find or search for you. If you have a website you can show your content to whomever you like and whenever you like. Social media uses ‘algorithms’ to decide who should see your business and when and for how long within each person’s personal ‘feed.’ By feed I mean the constantly updating list of stories such as status updates, photos, videos, links from people etc. A social media platforms goal is to keep people scrolling through their feed so that they see more ads so they constantly refresh the content. This means that your carefully designed post all about your new product may not get the attention it deserves if the algorithm only shows the post to a small number of people. You are most definitely not in control!
Before I go on I will add a disclaimer here – I don’t actually hate social media per se. It’s a great way to connect with your audience but it certainly should not replace your website. A website is the home and headquarters of the business and social media is the fancy sandwich board pointing people in the right direction. To finish off this short and sweet rundown of why I think you need a website I want to focus on credibility. Whenever you buy something, you want to know that the product is going to do what it says it it’s going to do. But how do you prove this? Honestly it’s tricky convincing people that you are legit. People need reassurance that if they can’t physically see your business in front of them, there is some other way of finding out you are real. If they can’t find you online, they may question if you actually exist. Sadly it’s like that and that’s the way it happens to be these days.
To be honest I’m always relieved when I find a business has a website as it shows that they have invested time and energy into their business. Of course there are lots of websites that don’t work or show that the business may have neglected their website but this is not the place to name and shame. I’ll talk about why keeping your website up to date is essential to your business credibility another time. I told you I loved talking about websites!
Of course if you and your competitors both have websites – how are you going to stand out from them?? Easy. Every website will be unique – by putting your logo on the homepage, using your branding colours consistently throughout the site and ensuring all the content and images match your services and values, you are giving yourself the best chance of a great first impression.
OUTRO: So that’s my top 3 reasons for why you need a website. Sales, control and credibility. Are there any I’ve failed to mention? Follow me on social media @twocowsweb and let me know. Thanks for listening. Please press follow on your podcast app so you won’t miss the next episode. Bye for now.
For more information visit twocowsweb.co.uk/podcast. Help! My Website Sucks is a Vibrant Sound Media production.