Back in 1997, the number of small business websites you could find on the Internet was scarce to say the least. Not only were they expensive to create and extremely difficult to manage, but customers were pretty much nowhere to be found. Fast-forward to 2018 and you’re 5 steps behind your competition if you don’t have one. In fact, some would argue that if your business isn’t online, you don’t exist.

Many small businesses have already established an online presence, or at least created a website for their brand or product. Yet according to data from 2017, nearly 30% of small businesses still don’t have a website. Business owners cite cost, operation size and lack of technical expertise as the three main reasons for not establishing an online presence. Plus, for many small business owners, trying to establish an online presence is just something else to add to the never-ending to-do list. When you combine all of these factors, it becomes much easier to understand the real reasons why some small businesses owners still shy away from digital marketing.

But the reality is that you DO need a website to grow and prosper. Think of it as the foundation of your home, and the architectural structure that connects and supports everything else. From website design to web development and everything in between, creating a professional website is the first step in setting your business up for success.

Here are the top reasons why every small business needs a website in 2018.

You Can Reach a Larger Audience

Did you know that 97% of customers searched for local businesses online in 2017? Recent studies show that a dominant portion of consumers today give as much credit to online reviews as they do personal recommendations. That says a lot about the power of being online and how it can affect your business.

Think about how much time people spend on the Internet on a daily basis, whether they’re looking for a new restaurant in town, booking a summer vacation or researching home appliances. Comscore found that in the US alone, people spend an average of 35.2 hours online every month.

Marketing online has nothing to do with how big or small your company is, or how much money you’re generating. It’s not even just about the products or services you offer. People are online, which is exactly where you should be as well.

You’ll Establish Your Business’s Legitimacy 

If you’re serious about growing your business, you need to have a platform that not only caters to potential customers, but also lends itself to help establish your credibility and reputation. That’s exactly what a professional website does. It legitimizes your business as credible and trustworthy. Not having a website for your business just doesn’t “sit well” with people who are spending an important amount of their time searching for new products and services, reading reviews and comparing testimonials online.

By building out a strong presence online, you’ll reach prospects that may have otherwise never heard of you or your business.

Keep in mind that simply going online and creating a website, expecting an overflow of new customers and sales won’t cut it. It must be aesthetically pleasing, as well as functional. After all, if someone comes to your site and it takes 30 seconds for it to load, do you really think they’re going to stick around and wait?  Would you?  Furthermore, how great are people going to think your products and services are if your website doesn’t really work properly? As the cornerstone of your marketing strategy, your website needs to be highly responsive and visually appealing.

It’ll Increase Your Revenue

Your website can be a pivotal tool for improving brand recognition and increasing your revenue. One of the most profitable ways in which small businesses can generate more sales is by expanding their customer base. A website that is helpful and informative in nature, as well as easy to navigate, is a must when it comes to attracting new customers and clients. By building out a strong presence online, you’ll reach prospects that may have otherwise never heard of you or your business.

Small businesses need to align their marketing strategy so that they can compete with consumer expectations. People tend to research a product or service online before buying. In fact, a whopping 75% of US consumers to be more precise, according to a 2017 report that was published by the eCommerce Foundation. Without a website, it will be next to impossible for a serious customer to consider your business, much less decide to contact you.

It’ll Save You Money

Think about how much money you can save by building your online presence instead of spending it on traditional marketing where ROI is next to impossible to track?

A website does much more than simply showcase your products and services. It’s a place where you can offer discounts, share information about your products and services, and tell your customers about your mission and future goals. With a website, you can get your company’s message and personality in front of your target audience faster than with print ads and snail mail brochures. Plus, having your own website means you’re greeting and talking to customers and potential customers 24 hours a day,  days a week, and 365 day a year.

Do You Need a Website for Your Small Business?

A good website can:

  • Boost your digital presence
  • Improve brand visibility
  • Generate a steady stream of new leads
  • Increase sales

At J2O Designs, we build websites that are designed to help you meet your overall marketing goals, without infringing on the time you need to actually run – and grow – your business. Contact us today for a free consultation. We’re more than just your average web developer or web designer. We’re here to help strategize and transform your marketing so that you see maximum ROI.