As a business owner you may already have a website but maybe it’s not working for your business. It could be that it’s not performing how you would like, or maybe it doesn’t reflect your business as it is now as it’s not been updated for so long. When looking to create or improve a website there are many things to consider. Getting it right from the start and not wasting money is of paramount importance.
Whatever the reason, we hope this blog helps you to understand what makes a good website.
Why Do I Need A Website?
Firstly, it’s important to establish if you do actually need a website and what the purpose of it is.
Here’s a few reasons as to why you might need a website:
Credibility & Validity – People are checking your website to make sure you are a credible business and to validate you. How many times have you come across a company that does not have a website or it was last updated years ago? Did you use that business? More than likely not.
Industry Expert – You are knowledgeable in your field and your website is the perfect place to show this…as mentioned above people are looking to check that you’re credible and to validate you.
Visibility – People are searching online for your type of product or service. You need to be visible online for you to show up in those searches. Being visible online starts with having a website.
Competitors – Your competitors will have websites. If you don’t chances are your target audience are buying from your competitors. If your competitors do not have a website that is your opportunity to take a bigger share of the market.
Ideal Customers – Your website should be the place where you speak to your target audience aka ideal customers. Everything should be written and designed as if you are talking directly to them.
Data Capture – It takes hard work to get visitors and if they leave without you knowing who they are it’s criminal. You must have a way of capturing data.
Lead Generation – Whatever your Call To Action (CTA) is you should be creating leads and helping to generate business.
Driving Traffic – Chances are you are undertaking other marketing activities such as social media or email marketing; your website should be where you’re driving this traffic to convert them.
What Do I Need To Have A Good Website?
It’s all well and good having a nice-looking website but it needs be effective to meet your business objectives, nontheless. Hopefully you have a marketing plan in place to work out what those objectives are.
A good website should:
- Be easy to navigate
- Raise awareness of your products and services
- Address your ideal customers pain points
- Influence people’s actions
- Make it easy for your customers to buy from you
- Have clear CTA’s (Call To Action)
- Include a Lead Magnet
- Have regularly updated content such as a blog
- Display Social Media buttons & contact information
All of these things will help you on the way to having an effective website.
The Good, The Bad And The Effective
There are essentially 3 kinds of websites. The good, the bad and the effective!
A bad website is easy to recognize. They are just bad, and often ugly. They hurt your eyes, they have terrible navigation, and/or they are annoying, and they quickly send visitors away irritated, confused, or even dizzy.
In this article we’ve focused on having a good website. But actually what we are aiming for is a good, effective website.
A good website is the most common type, but harder to identify because it usually looks just like an effective website. A good website should have a professional appearance, sensible navigation, good content, etc. It is not difficult to create a good website, so most fall into this category. The problem is, good does not always equal effective.
An effective website is the kind with the most benefits. The primary difference between a good one and an effective one is that it anticipates the needs of the customer/visitor and meets those needs. Ironically, these are rare. Most websites try to “sell” rather than address the needs of the visitor. Effective ones require more planning and effort to create, but the rewards are worth it.
An Effective Website Should:
Have Instant Visual Presentation
Not every organisation can afford television advertising, but a website provides a visualisation element and is always available to anyone with Internet access. If a customer has questions that can be better answered on a website than over the phone, this is a valuable asset to your marketing mix.
Be Found Through Seach Engines
Between 80-95 percent of all traffic usually comes from search engines. You can target visitors who are actively looking for you, your product, your service, or your information. A website is an extremely cost effective way to advertise to those who are already interested in what you have to offer.
Always be available
No other medium for being available 24/7/365 even compares to a website. They can be visited at a time that is convenient for the visitor, and it is more engaging when designed correctly. Even just a few years ago, most websites were nothing more than an electronic brochure. Their real potential was not being realised.
That has now changed dramatically. Visitors have the ability to control and interact with a well-designed website. You can take a virtual tour, spin an object around to see all sides, provide direct feedback, and much more.
Target each visitor specifically
Every visitor’s needs are met with effective design. With proper targeting, you have their attention because they are already interested. With a bit of strategic planning, you can customise each area to the type of visitor who can benefit from it. It is even possible to customise web pages to individual users for added convenience.
Be updated easily
Unlike printed materials, websites can be changed on a minute-by-minute basis if needed. The expensive production costs of video, and the editing time needed for a good advertisement, make websites even more attractive. Plus, video can be utilised and printed materials can be made available for instant download.
Improve customer relations
Aside from the fact that when a customer asks you for your web address, they expect you to have one, there are numerous benefits a website can offer to your customer relations. These are just a few:
• Customers can make an informed buying decision. If they are deciding between you and a competitor, your website could mean the difference between who gets the business.
• It also provides a way for customers to benefit after a sale. If you provide information or support through a website that makes them happier about buying from you, it strengthens your business.
• By providing an opt-in mailing list, your customers and visitors will give you permission to contact them about special offers or additional things they may be interested in purchasing from you.
Be an important part of the marketing mix
Don’t think of your website as the be all and end all of your marketing. It needs to work in close harmony with other things such as brochures and other printed material and social media marketing. These are all aspects of promoting your business that we specialise in. A common mistake that businesses make is to think that all they need is a website. Don’t waste your online investment by not marrying it up with effective offline marketing.
So what steps do you need to take to create a good small business website?
We hope that you’ve found this article helpful but we’ve also created an e-book “A Business Owners Guide To A Profitable Business” click here to download now or speak to us to discuss how to make your website work for your business.