Lets face it – most businesses these days have a website. Often times these websites were built several years ago with basic content and little else and have been neglected ever since. Are these websites really effective though and if not, whats the difference between a site like this and an effective business website – and perhaps most importantly why do you need one to be successful online and generate additional income for your business? Are you or have you seen a return on your investment with your website? Are you tracking things so you really know? Perhaps more surprising is how many businesses in the Omaha area we come across that have a business website but the website is broken or in some cases completely down (not functioning at all). Are you one of them?
One thing we’ve definitely noticed here at Omaha Computer Service Pros is that most businesses know they should have a website but most don’t understand why or really what an effective, professionally built website can do for their business or what the difference really is. Often there seems to be a “if you build it, they will come” type mentality and most tend to not really value their website. Unfortunately these businesses are literally leaving huge amounts of money on the table with this type of mentality.
So why should you value your website? Can it really generate additional revenue for your business?
Some Stats To Consider
Before digging too much into things, here are some stats that should help make it plainly obvious why having an effective website is so important.
- 72% of consumers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations from real people. Easy access to your online reviews should be a vital part of your website.
- 69% of consumers are more likely to use a local business if it has information available on social media sites. All of your social media sites should point the potential customer back to your website.
- 60% of local business websites don’t have their phone number listed anywhere on their site. Even if you do, is it easy to find – especially when people access your site using a smartphone?
- 93% of small business websites are not mobile optimized and will not work properly and/or will not be user friendly on smartphones. This is vital because 88% of consumers who search for a type of local business on a mobile device call or go to that business within 24 hours.
Hopefully you are at least starting to see the value of having an effective business website but lets dig deeper.
Your Website is an Investment
It’s eye opening to be honest how many businesses still have no problem spending tens of thousands of dollars on advertising in the yellow pages, news papers, etc but when it comes to their website would rather have a family member or friend build it for them. Perhaps even worse, some businesses will use a free service or site builder to build the site themselves. Of course this is probably marginally better than having no website but keep in mind perception is everything. You could be running your business out of your Mom’s basement but if you have a professionally designed website, potential customers will definitely take notice and take you seriously. Conversely you could be the most professional company in town but if your website isn’t up to par, potential customers may go elsewhere and assume you aren’t very professional or trustworthy.
Business Website Statistics – How Google Analytics Can Make You More Money
Everything on your business website should be trackable and we mean everything. How? It’s actually way easier than you may think and properly utilizing this information could literally change your marketing (both online and offline) forever. With a professionally designed website, you should be able to track statistics and know who is going where on your website, for how long and what keywords they used to find you. Additional information includes how old and what gender the website visitor is which, depending on your business niche, could be particularly important information. This is done using tool known as Google Analytics. Imagine being able to focus your marketing efforts around the specific things and keywords that your customers are using and looking for. Imagine knowing exactly what types of products your customers are looking for online. This allows you to know what you need to build your content for your business website around which will ultimately lead customers to your door (or to pickup the phone and call you). Your marketing efforts really can’t get more targeted than this and fortunately for you it’s a little known secret that not many Omaha area businesses seem to be utilizing. If this part is done properly, you will have a huge advantage over your competition. For more information about Google Analytics, check out this video:
Mobile/Responsive Websites – Why Having One is Absolutely Vital
There are tons of statistics that show the vast majority of people these days will look you up on their smartphone as opposed to sitting at a computer or laptop. Even without statistics though, this should be plainly obvious to most people. Gone are the days that most people will bother looking for services in the yellow pages. Long story short, if your site is not mobile optimized, you are definitely losing out on potential business. Not only will not being mobile optimized make potential customers go elsewhere (due to your site being difficult to navigate), your rankings in Google will drop also. As of 2015, Google now automatically decreases your ranking in the search engine if you don’t have a mobile optimized website.
So what if you have no idea if your site is mobile optimized or not? Simple – Google has made a free online tool that lets you test your website to see if it is mobile optimized. Head on over to the Google Mobile-Friendly Test page, enter the URL of your website and click the “analyze” button. After a minute or so, the page will display your results. If your site is not “mobile friendly”, the site will tell you why or what is wrong with your site.
Having an effective business website will make your company run smoother and increase your productivity. How? Simple, by allowing people to fill out online forms. For example, statistics show that a potential customer is more likely to fill out an online form to inquire about services as opposed to picking up the phone to call you. You can also allow customers to fill out any needed forms online as opposed to needing to stop in and can even accept online job applications which will increase the number of people applying for jobs with you which will increase the quality of your employees.
You Get What Your Pay For
Like anything else, when it comes to your website you get what you pay for. keep in mind most people wouldn’t hire just anybody to remodel their home for example. The same thought and consideration should be taken when it comes to the online face of your company. Customers do notice and do care. Like I already mentioned, perception is everything. Whatever you do, don’t take this lightly.
There are of course many other reasons why having a professionally designed website is vital to the success of your business – especially down the road. If you’d like to discuss things further with us, contact us today!