It severely hurts my brain when people ask me, “do you think I need a website for my small business?”

It’s 2017 guys, wake up! I get that this comes across aggressive, but the frustration is real. I’m baffled by the number of small businesses that choose not to have a website when 93% of business purchases start with a search on Google (or a search engine in general).

In case you didn’t already know, 20 million shoppers are online at any given moment, including right this very second. These people are buying anything from pocket scarfs to car rentals, to arts & crafts or even those sweet new Nike Air Huarache trainers in maroon.

There are too many reasons to explain why a website-less business isn’t going to win, I’ve just given you one but let’s look at a few more:

1) WHERE'S YOUR TRUST FACTOR?

Without a website, are people even going to consider you as an option?  First of all, you’ve already lost a huge amount of business because these poor bug*ers can’t even find, or know, that you exist. Even if they have magically heard of you because your mother-in-law has recommended you to her work colleague, that potential customer is looking for a product or services that they trust. He or she wants reassurance that you can deliver in a professional manner. Not having a website can make you look like you’re not taking your business seriously.

It severely hurts my brain when people ask me "Do you think I need a website for my small business?"

— Dale J Graham

2) IT BECOMES YOUR PORTFOLIO

Spreading filtered images of your Florist shop on Instagram is a great way to build a portfolio and I would never discourage anyone to do it, but Instagram is not your website and you don’t own it.

Having your own website that people can navigate through to see your gallery and case studies, find out more about your business and contact you all in the same place… is gold dust.

Images and especially videos speak a thousand words and if you’ve managed to get someone onto your site, skipping through your content and getting a better understanding of what their buying into… well then that conversion is only around the corner.

But you already know this, because you do it every time before making a purchase yourself.

3) BEING 24/7 WITH YOUR PEOPLE

Make it convenient for them.

Trust me when I say, it is convenient for a customer to request a quotation for your videography work at 22:30, it is convenient for a customer to email you before buying your new book at 00:01 and it is convenient for a customer to be able to access your whole website at any hour of the day to get the information they need. If you’re wanting to start selling online, then being convenient means being 24/7.

"If you're wanting to start selling online, then being convenient means being 24/7."

4) IT'S WAY TOO COST EFFECTIVE

“How much does a website cost?!” I hear you ask. To be honest, there are a thousand answers. In fact, Google actually tells me there are 277,000,000 different results to this question and I can almost guarantee that a large percentage will all have different answers.

As a small business, you need to make sure you look at this the right way. This isn’t you spending £600 or £6000 on a newspaper advert that will be forgotten about in 3 weeks time, let alone only being read by a handful of un-targeted people who aren’t interested in what you have to sell. This is you building a foundation for your brand and making an investment. When you really sit down and work out what the ROI would be, let’s say, for example, to gain a 25% increase in your sales this year along with your brand awareness expanding dramatically via customers that trust you… it suddenly all starts to make sense.

"Don't Get Left Behind"

I’ve not even touched the surface of online paid media and the ridiculously good things it can do for you and your business, but let this be a start to the execution of your ideas. Do something about it.

Websites and technology, in general, is referred to as the fastest growing industry in Britain. We now refer to the “over the counter” companies as ancient blueprints of how “people used to do business”.

Please don’t get left behind – and please don’t ask me again if your small business needs a website! 😉

On the other hand, if you’re looking for any help or any advice on this matter… Don’t be scared to get in touch!