Do I need a website for my business?

Photo of a man using a website to view some statistics

I talk to several people a day about their businesses and their websites and there’s one phrase that comes up regularly that really frustrates me: “I don’t really need a website”. Sometimes they follow it up with “We’ve got one but it doesn’t really bring in much business”.

Most people who say this are running traditional trade businesses (electricians, mechanics, small shops, etc.) and rely on word of mouth for their work. Most of the time these people are running thriving businesses. However, they’re basing their assessment of their web needs on poor data. A properly built and optimised website can bring in even more sales on top of the ones that they achieve through word of mouth or passing trade alone.

I’ve got a website already

Some of the clients that I’ve spoken to who have used the phrases above have already paid someone to create a website for them. As far as they’re concerned, they’ve ticked the box for having a website for their business.

However, not all websites are created equal. A poorly built and optimised website will just sit there as a “business card” for your business. Although it may be easy to find by people who are specifically looking for your business, it won’t attract new customers who are looking for businesses in your sector. Why? Because your competitors who have better optimised websites are taking the top spots in the Google search.

It’s really hard to convince these business owners of the benefits of a well optimised website – they’re very cynical after having had a bad experience previously and it’s hard to blame them.

However, we usually find that they’re usually the clients that are most impressed with the results after they have had a new website built that’s optimised and managed properly. They go from having a website that has one or two hits per week to a website that is bursting with traffic and delivers high volumes of new sales.

How do I know if my current website is up to scratch?

The easiest way is to use our free SEO review serviceto get an indication of how well your site is optimised for search. A good grade there is normally an indication that your website has been built properly.

The next thing to do is to search for your business on Google. I don’t mean by searching for your company name but actually searching for what your customers might be searching for, e.g. “gardening shops in liverpool”. Try to put yourself in the customer’s shoes and thing what they might enter. I’ve found that a really good way to do this is to hand your laptop to a less-than-tech-savvy friend and tell them what you want them to find and see what keywords they search for.

Once you’ve searched for these terms, find out where you appear in the listings. If you’re not on the front page, you probably won’t be getting many clicks from Google and your site probably isn’t very well optimised for search.

Lastly, how does your site appear on mobile? If you site isn’t optimised for mobile then it won’t perform well on Google’s mobile search. Given that most people who are searching for something these days don’t switch on their laptop to find it and will most probably use their mobile phone, you can lose a huge number of visitors/sales this way.

You can check how your site looks on mobile by entering your website address into a tool like ready.mobi and looking at the “High-tier phone” screen.

Ready for a new website?

If you’d like a quote for a new site then you can get in touch and we’ll be happy to help.

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