Are you unsure whether to build a website?
If you’re pretty new to the business scene, you may be wondering whether its actually essential to get yourself a business website. However, as a business owner with more than 12 years experience, take it from me when I tell you that a website is absolutely essential.
What’s stopping you? Maybe you’re unsure how to actually go about starting a website. This is understandable. The thought of starting your own website can be quite daunting to some, especially if you don’t already have much knowledge of technology or computer systems. Maybe you simply don’t have the time to maintain one? If not, why not outsource to someone? Yes, it costs, but it’s definitely worth paying.
Let’s take a look at some benefits of having a business website…
The benefits of having a business website…
Helps build your audience
Having your own website will massively help boost your audience. It’s just as important as having a strong presence on social media. A website is like a business headquarters for your customers and clients. It’s a place where they can access all the information they may need about your business, and about you.
With an easy-to-access website, it’s going to create a very customer-friendly experience. Yes, of course customers are looking for specific products/services that fit their needs, but what they are also looking for is convenience – so a website with everything they will need on it will go a long way to attracting a bigger audience and encouraging repeat purchase.
Keeps your followers up to date
A business website is also a great way to keep your customers and audience up to date with the latest news or events that are happening in your business. Start blogging! It’s a perfect way for your audience to not only be up to date with you, but also to continuously learn about your industry. For example, my target audience is more towards small business owners, so I make sure my blogs reflect that. This way my clients can learn throughout their business journey.
Not a writer? Outsource! Trust me; it’s worth the investment if you can afford it. If not, write as well as you can, and over time, you will learn and your writing skills will improve. You can take a look at one of my previous blogs, ‘Is a Business Blog Essential?’ to learn more about blogging.
You can further promote your products and services
Just like social media, a business website is of course a great place to further promote your products and services. The way you structure your website depends on the type of business you are. For example, if you own a clothing brand, the biggest part of your website will likely need to be your shop, listing all of the things you sell.
For me, as a business mentor, I have separate sections that explain and promote each service that I offer. However, since business is personal, and I work very closely, face-to-face with my clients, I also have a big ‘About Jo’ section, so people can get to know me and make sure I’m a good fit for them and their business.
It’s another place for potential clients to get in touch
Having your own business website also creates an additional platform for potential or current clients to get in touch with you, regarding your products or services. Create a ‘Contact Me’ page, or something similar.
Social media is rapidly growing; in fact 66% (45 million people) of the UK’s population are using social media platforms (stats from avocadosocial.com). However, this doesn’t mean everyone. So there needs to be some kind of platform, other than social media, for people to contact you on – and a website is one of them! Some people may even just prefer to contact you through a website rather than social media. Either way, the more contact pathways, the better!
Others can back link to your website
When you’ve got your own website, it creates an opportunity for you to gain back links, from other companies or websites. Back links are essentially links from other websites that lead to yours. So for example, say you submitted a guest blog or an interview for another company’s website; they would include a link to your website, within the piece.
Not to get too technical, but when you gain back links, it increases your websites domain authority. This is essentially the strength of your website/domain. The higher your DA, the more likely you are to rank higher in organic web searches – increasing traffic to your website! This further boosts your brand, and increases online presence.
How do I get myself a website?
Launching your own website is likely easier than you think. But before you do anything, I’d recommend trying to lay out a brief plan or structure of what you want your website to look like, and what kind of content you want to include on it. A good way to do this is to take a look at your competitor’s websites. Of course, don’t just copy what they have done, but you can draw inspiration, see what kind of things you like that suit your business and reflect its message.
Next you need to register a domain name, you can do this online. Make sure you pick a name that is relevant to your business, not confusing and is straight to the point. Don’t make it too wordy, as it needs to be as memorable as possible. As you can see, my domain is ‘jobevilacqua.com’ – it’s simple, relevant (as it’s my name), and easy to remember.
Once you’ve got your domain, you need to go ahead and find a website builder and hosting provider that can create the site for you. There’s a ton of different companies you can go for. The system we use is WordPress, which works really well for my business, and the kind of content I want to produce. So take a look around online, do your research, and find one that works for you.
Make sure you do some research into SEO, and how to make sure your website gets seen. It can take a while, but you have to optimize you website so it’s legible to show up on search engines. There’s plenty of online courses you can do to learn about this, or simply read up about it online.
Tips for launching your business website…
Here are some of my top tips for launching your own business website…
Make it personal
Whatever kind of industry you’re in, your clients and customers are going to want to work with/buy from someone they can relate to, and someone who has similar values. So ensure that you keep your website personal by including information about yourself, so they can get to know you, and include plenty of photos and visual content so they can put a name to a face!
Ensure its mobile-friendly
Remember, not everyone has a computer or laptop. And to be fair, most people will probably have a quick look at your website whilst they’ve got a spare few minutes, so they’re likely to be using their phone. Either way, it needs to be accessible to mobile users. You can structure your website so it works on phones and computers, which will allow more traffic to your website.
Keep your content simple, and easy on the eyes
No one wants to be overloaded with information or sit trying to figure out what different jargon might mean. Keep your content simple, and break it up with photos, subheadings, and even colours. The more complex your website looks, the less traffic you’ll get to said website. It’s also going to massively increase your websites bounce rate. This is essentially the amount of users who click onto your website, but immediately click that back arrow. The simpler it looks, the less likely they are to find the same thing elsewhere.
Build an email list
You can create a pop-up on your website with a form, for people to subscribe to a mailing list to receive regularly emails and updates about your business. This could include things like special offers, exclusive deals or first-come first-served basis events. This further brings in more traffic to your website if people are eager to receive deals and be the first to hear about exclusive news about your products/services.
Regularly update your website
Regularly updating your business website is absolutely essential. It lets your clients and customers know that you’re still active. If it hasn’t changed at all in months, users may question whether the information is still up to date, or relevant. Especially if you haven’t posted blogs for a little while, They may even think the website is obsolete, and you’ve moved to a new domain, which would just encourage them to find a new business who offers similar products and services to you.
A business website IS essential!
There’s so many benefits to having your own business website, and hopefully I’ve convinced you! Do the research, plan the structure, and get your website launched. It makes a huge difference.