The benefits of having a website depend on what business you are in and what you want from the website. We discuss some business website benefits on this page.
Most businesses will now benefit from having a website. In fact the absence of a website puts most modern businesses at a real disadvantage. With so many people now using the Internet to search for products and services it is now acknowledged that having a business website is just about as essential as having a telephone. Your website will be where many people become aware of your business.
Let's say that you are seeking to have a home extension built and you heard about a building company called Ace Extensions. You are based in Carlisle so you enter Ace Extensions Carlisle into the Google search box, Google displays a few results and perhaps a couple of directory links but no website which matches what you are looking for. Google also displays it's normal text, Did you mean, "Acme Extension Carlisle"? No, you did not but you decide to have a look at it anyway. They have a nice website and you decide to buy from them. Result? Ace extensions loses a job worth £60,000 because they did not spend as little as £500 on a little website.
This is not fiction. This actually happens somewhere every minute of the day and this is why all businesses can benefit from having their own website.
Examples of Businesses that can Gain full ROI and Benefit from having a Website
Clearly we cannot write about the benefits of having a website for every business. What follows is a list of typical examples of businesses which can quite easily get a full ROI on their website investment costs.
The Ace Extension example above is good illustration of how a website will work for local building companies and self employed people.
Research shows that people searching for builders, electricians, plumbers, gardeners, painters & decorators, handymen and associated trades will normally do so with a search like that used in the example above.
Other typical search terms are "Electrician Grimsby", "painter and decorator Glasgow", "gardener near Warrington" and "plumbers in Bristol". If you do not appear in the search results for your business you are losing out on all of this potential business and hence profit.
This is a more obvious example. The Internet is now probably the single most popular way of looking for hotel accommodation so the benefits are quite obvious.
We all search for hotels online now - whether we are looking for a one night stay in a hotel for business purposes or a week's holiday for the family.
Even if people already know about your hotel you still need a website. If they are considering making a booking they will want to visit your website to check out the services you offer, what type of rooms you have, meal options, etc. You can also display a nice picture gallery that shows your place to its best advantage.
They may also need to know your actual location and to get directions there. Effectively your website is an online brochure that is available to everyone in the world.
We have to point out that this is one of the more competitive areas of search. Hotels were quick to realise the importance and the potential of the Internet for advertising. It is therefore a bit more difficult to feature near the top of the search results. We can advise you on your chances, which are dependent on several factors including your location and the amount of competition at that location.
If you have a restaurant then much of the above applies. Once again this is an online brochure where you can tell people about your food, your chef, display your menu and prices if required and also show nice images.
Outside of its use as an online brochure, your restaurant website can get you found in the same way as the above examples. If someone is looking for ideas for a place to dine out in your area or town they are likely to do search for "restaurants Carlisle" or whatever. Having a website benefits you by giving you a chance to appear in the results for similar searches. You may also include an online form for making online bookings.
Many consultants (in disciplines like management, engineering, marketing, training, HR and IT) spend more of their time finding work and trying to generate enquiries than actually being out there on the job and actually working as a consultant in their chosen discipline. That is why they have to charge appropriately to cover their time. Times are tough and many consultancy fields are very competitive.
You must maximise your business generation opportunities and one of the best ways of doing this is to have a properly designed and optimised website. We can advise you and help you to create your website so that you can realise the benefits available. In most cases a day's consultancy fee would cover the cost of a website, which could bring you in a massive amount of business. Let's say that you are a management consultant from Manchester. What would it be worth to you to have a website appeared in the top position in a Google search for "Management Consultants Manchester"?
Outside of the business generation opportunities you once again have the benefit of an online brochure that is available to prospective clients 24/7/365. You can use this to keep existing clients up to date with what is happening and also direct prospective clients found by other means to it to show them what you can do and the services you offer.
People are more and more turning to the Internet when seeking accommodation. This is true for both buying and renting property. The benefits of a website to an estate agent or letting agent are again fairly obvious.
You can list your properties, display images of these, list prices and perhaps offer information about the local area for people moving from elsewhere. Once again a full ROI on the cost of your website could be obtained with a single property sale.
We have now completed several photographers websites. these have all been very successful in generating business for our clients.
As in the examples above the cost of the website is easily justified. Wedding photographers, for example will almost always get the full cost of developing their website back on the first wedding job they generate from the website.
A website like this also has the advantage of being able to generate business from well outside the local area. For example Loch Lomond in Scotland is beautiful and very popular attraction. People come here from all over the world to get married.
One of our local photographer clients specialises in weddings on Loch Lomond. His website generates enquiries from most of the English speaking world. His website now generates ALL of his enquiries and he no longer uses any other form of advertising.
If you have an established business - a "bricks and mortar" business you may be considering putting your stock online. You need to do your homework to determine if this will be worth your while. Have a look at the competition. If you can offer competitive products or services then it will probably be right for you to set up an online operation.
With Toucher Web Design this need only cost from about £600 to £2000 depending on your requirements. DEcide if you can afford to take chance on this and if you are going for it get in touch with us. We can offer you no obligation advice on getting your business online.
So in conclusion, we have offered a small sample of how websites can benefit specific businesses but actually all business can benefit from having a website. Not having one is really not an option nowadays. With more people using the Internet - kids, adults, silver surfers, male, female we are fast approaching the time when as many people have computers as television. In fact many people now watch television on their computers and this audience will increase with time.
So go for it! Just ensure that whoever you choose make a website for your business offers search engine optimisation as part of their web design services. Your website needs to able to get found on the Internet.
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