That is perfectly good question. Most businesses are told they need a website by just about everyone from competitors to their customers. Yet most don’t know what or how they would use a website. So let’s discuss just what your website is for and how it can impact your business.
First your website is a way to reach people beyond your ‘brick and mortar’ store front, beyond your city and regional limits to present yourself too specific audiences much like a brochure or even a mailer. Your website will allow your current audience and potential audience a source to gain information about your business, a way to contact you, and of course to review your goods or services.
Your site is a gateway to your audience.
Second your website is a gateway to potential business, if leveraged correctly, should that be from lead generation, conversion of visitors online to the store front, or possibly clients seeking your special talents. Unlike expensive marketing campaigns your website is ‘always on’ for any and all to see so make sure it is worth looking at.
If you make it pretty they will come and make sure you have something to do when they get there.
Of course none of that matters if you do not have a strong idea of what your own business audience is, or the audience you wish to reach. If you make a brochure but don’t send it out how much good is it doing you? This is true of your website without promotion of it’s existence and usage of tools to make sure it can be located it might as well be a pile of unused brochures in the corner of your store.
Know your audience and put your site out there for their use.
Much like your business card for the Internet savvy your site is a reflection of your professional interest. How you manage and present your site reflects on the image of your business so small issues can turn your audience off to your small business. Broken links, images, missing pages, lack of appropriate information, hard to read or understand are just a few of the most common reasons most website visitors ‘bounce’ from a page and seek their connection elsewhere. Your site is meant to keep the audience tuned in and focused on what you are offering otherwise your site is just the bright window dressing on the drab interior.
Looking professional helps you be professional.
So what does your website do? Simply put, an awful lot. Just make sure it’s doing the most for you and your small business.