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What is likely to be the first thing you do when looking for a restaurant, mechanic, or beautician? You check their website. No matter whether the outlet you are interested in belongs to an international chain or is a local business, you want to know whether they are still open after your work shift or you should not bother driving there. However, small businesses have a limited budget to spend in marketing efforts, especially during these uncertain times. On the other hand, some benefits of having a website for your small business should not be ignored.
That's How Potential Customers Find Your Business.
Today's users and customers use the internet as a faster, more responsive, and immediately efficient phone book. In the past, if you could not find a business on the phone book, you will skip to the next one that offers similar services, but you can get in contact with – and that's your competition. If anybody in your area has a website, you will need to make sure that your business is as visible as theirs. If they don't, well, there is nothing outrageous in being the first one.
Including a Blog Helps You Build Relationships With Your Customers.
A couple of landing pages and contact forms might just be enough to encourage potential customers towards your business. However, before or after the purchase, such pages might not be particularly useful in keeping the engagement levels high. Instead, implementing a blog and regularly publishing relevant content allows you to supply answers to the most common questions and issues your audience might be experiencing.
When writing a blog for your business's website, you can craft a marketing strategy by yourself, but you should be aware of what are the most common blogging mistakes to avoid them. If you feel like this might be too overwhelming for you, asking for a consultation offered by an SEO or digital marketing professional can guide you through the right path.
And So Does a Newsletter!
Alongside regular blog posts, investing in a newsletter, and crafting the perfect call to action allows you to generate new leads and retain more data about your audience than ever. However, newsletters are also essential to keep in touch with your target market throughout the year. Therefore, you can check in with them in the periods in between purchases or when you are about to launch or update a new product or service.
Instead of having to find new customers who are interested in your latest creation, most of your audience will get to know about offers, discounts, giveaways, and new launches. Don't forget that in periods in which your business can't operate as usual – like in the case of the current restrictions – a newsletter can help you communicate to your customer opening hours and safety measures implemented.
Create the First Point of Contact
Undoubtedly, websites are the first point of contact for a customer who is looking for your address or contact details. If it does reflect the value proposition, theme, and mission of your brand, your website offers an ideal peek into the experience that your customer is about to have.
Not having a website might suggest that your business is not particularly up-to-date, innovative, or clear in intent. Additionally, if you let the first point of contact be when the customer walks into your physical shop, this might not always go as planned! And first impressions are often everlasting! In this case, a well-crafted website allows you to create the ideal first impression you always want to leave in a new customer.
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Increases Trust – From the First Moment
If you are the owner of an established small or local business, your customer base might derive from decades of word-of-mouth marketing and entire generations engaging in your services. However, if you are a new business, you will have to generate trust and get your customers to know that you have the expertise, attitude, and knowledge to perform the best job. A website can do precisely that.
Your business' site will have testimonials, reviews, social media handles' links, and call to actions. Your customer can explore your business, experience, and portfolio at its own pace, and make an even more informed decision. Aside from increasing the number of customers for your business, they might also be willing to pay more for the same product!
It's a Marketing Channel You Can't Ignore
With an endless range of marketing media out there, it can seem impossible to pick the best one for your needs. However, just by having a website, you can combine several digital marketing branches, such as SEO and video marketing, in one platform. While you might need the help of a professional agency or expert to craft a strategy that can truly get your business off the ground, websites are also reasonably easy to handle by yourself.
You Can Leverage Data to Create Better Services
Past and potential customers commenting, subscribing, and generally taking action on your website offer you a data set you can start plotting. Whether this about your marketing campaign, expectations not met, or a particular aspect of your product that does not work as well, it is all valuable feedback. Through such input, you can craft better products, strategies, and services that truly reflect your users' needs.
It Is the Starting Point to Build an eCommerce Business.
The current pandemic and ensuing lockdown and social distancing measures have made clear that remote working, delivery options, and touchless services are here to stay. While your small business already works locally, you might not be able to reach an audience that, while interested, might be located away from you.
However, today, not starting to think about an eCommerce option might decrease your business's level of competitiveness, especially if you look at other companies in the same sector. You can still opt to keep your local outlet open as usual, but generating income streams through an online eCommerce store allows you to benefit from a visibility level that you would not have otherwise.