Why should you have a website

Why your business needs a website. Including trademark,branding and fast communication.

Easy to remember contact information:

Often I see vans, trucks and cars with company logos and a phone number on them for advertising the business they belong to. Phone numbers are long and difficult to memorize in a couple of seconds. It is much easier to memorize a name, and append .com.au to the end. For instance, Bob's Plumbing www.bobsplumbing.com.au is easier to remember than Bob's Plumbing ph: 0411 129 433.

Free Receptionist:

A website can tell people things they want to know about your company and its products and services. I spend on average an hour or two a week answering phone enquiries, that do not lead to sales, thats an hour or two I could be working on other things, or in monetary terms, thats anywhere between $100 and $300 a week I am losing, just by answering questions. By having a website that describes services I provide, complete with prices and time estimates, I eliminated over half of those calls. Thats $5200+ per year I am saving.

E-commerce:

If your business sells products, a online shop can be a boon, using simple open source software, you can quickly add your items to a catalog, and have orders emailed or faxed to you for dispatch. Every person who orders through your site, saves you time, and money in not having to have a salesperson talk to them, or spend big on a physical store presence.

Hide your Size:

Some of the biggest online sites started out as one or two person operations our of a garage. With an online store, noone knows if you employ hundreds of people, or just your family on weekends.

Advertise to more people:

Dollar for Dollar, a website has the potential to reach more people than any other form of advertising. A $200 a year website, can literally be seen by millions of people. This is not garunteed, but through good design, and a high search engine rank, it is possible to generate a lot of interest in your site.

Gain customers from new areas:

A lot of people these days seem to think that if they can't find something on the internet, that it doesn't exist. I know I do. When I am looking for a product or service, I search the internet to find a provider. I also search for reviews, opinions & other sites relating to the provider, so I know if I am going to get good value for my money. I can't remember the last time I used the paper white / yellow pages to find a phone number, or a business. Having a website means other people can link to your business easily, with no major costs. For instance, I always post on my site when I buy a new gadget, and I include in my post a link to the online store I purchased it from, and links to any reviews or articles about said gadget, so I can not only show off how cool I am by having this gadget, but also let people know where they too can get one.

If your business sells products, a website gives you a international market, you are no longer restricted to just your local area.

Communication:

Email is both the single greatest component of the internet, and also the worst. It can be used to communicate with people around the world in seconds, for virtually no cost, however it is also used to send viruses around the world in seconds at virtually no cost.

If your potential customers can send you their questions at any time, day or night, you can get more customers. Noone is going to call your phone number at 2am to enquire if your thingamajig (tm) is available in neon blue, however they can email you, and when you get to work and finish your morning coffee, you can reply to them and let them know that yes, it does come in neon blue. If they are forced to wait until 9am to call you, because they can't email you, they may forget, find it somewhere else cheaper, or just decide its too much effort.

Additionally, you can get people to sign up for a mailing list, where you can send 1 email to thousands of people, for virtually no cost, letting them know that thingamajig mark II (tm) is now available, and they should all upgrade as soon as possible, because it is 1000X better than the old mark I. To send a normal letter to a thousand customers costs $500 for postage alone, plus printing costs.

Protect your identity:

Without dwelling too much on the scare factor, the final reason for your business to get a domain name and website, is to prevent another similar company registering the name for themselves, and trading on your name recognition, effectively stealing customers you never knew you could have. The past 5 years have seen numerous attempts to do this.

Keywords : sme, small business, website, domain, trademark Author : Patrick Kelso