There’s no denying it, we live in a very digital world. Think about everything you do online everyday: check your bank account, research restaurants and review menus, book appointments, purchase furniture, or watch the latest episode of Game of Thrones. At Mountain Mojo Group, we get a lot of questions from our partners in Flagstaff and northern Arizona about why websites are necessary for small businesses. Here are the top 7 reasons you should consider building and maintaining a website:
1. Your customers expect you to have a website
Consumers in today’s world expect all businesses to have a web presence- plain and simple. A very common practice for most users is to type in their specific questions to learn more about products, services, or companies, all by starting on the homepage of Google. Eventually, they will be landing on a business’ website with the hopes of having their questions answered. Not having a website can reduce your credibility: 30% of consumers won’t consider purchasing from businesses that don’t have a website.
2. You’re missing out on business
Without having a website, you are missing out on a lot of consumers and the consumers who are not online, are shrinking every year. No surprise that since 2000, the percentage of the US population who are completely offline has dropped from 48% to less than 10%– and is still falling.
Some skeptics are quick to argue that consumers are using the internet just to watch cat videos or scroll through Facebook. While that might be true, over 97% of consumers over the last year went online to search for local businesses in their area- with over 12% searching every day. If you don’t have a website, they’re not going to find you!
In fact, not having a website might be causing you to miss out on some real revenue and employee growth potential. A great study by Deloitte found some alarming statistics.
Companies that have a web presence:
- Earned two times as much revenue per employee
- Experienced revenue growth over the previous year that was nearly four times as high
- Were almost three times as likely to be creating jobs over the previous year
- Had an average employment growth rate that was more than six times as high
- Without a website, your business’ growth and revenue could be suffering!
3. Your website is always open, even when you’re not!
At Mountain Mojo Group we have seen users access our Clients’ websites at all hours and days of the week. Who’s looking to buy tile flooring from our friends over at Cunningham Flooring at 2:00am? More people than you think! With a website, your business is never closed and users can visit your “store” to learn about your products or services any time they like. By having a website, you put the users in the driver’s seat so they are able to digest your business on their own time.
4. Not everyone is using social media
“I don’t have a website because I have a Facebook page and everyone is on Facebook.” Yeah, we’ve heard that one a few times before!
The truth is that social media platforms like Facebook and Instagram are getting harder for businesses to reach their users. With the massive data breach in 2018 with Cambridge Analytica, social media platforms are changing their business ethics and algorithms which is impacting the performance of many businesses throughout the world. Even Facebook’s CEO, Mark Zuckerburg, has stated that the focus of Facebook is to continue to put “friends and family at the core of the experience.” Considering the changes over the past few years, relying on social media platforms to drum up online business and visibility is metaphorically putting all of your business’ eggs in one basket.
Not to mention that individuals are spending less and less time on social media platforms. Only 41% of businesses actually use social media to generate revenue– most use it for brand awareness.
The numbers don’t lie- here are the main reasons that users use social media (with the percentages of individuals who say that reason is their primary focus):
- Stay in touch with friends – 42%
- Stay up-to-date with news and current events – 39%
- To fill up spare time – 39%
- Because a lot of my friends are on social media – 34%
- General networking with other people – 34%
- To find funny or entertaining content – 34%
- To share photos or videos with others – 33%
- To share my opinion – 30%
- To meet new people – 28%
- To research or find products to buy – 27%
Notice what’s on the bottom of the list? Don’t use social media exclusively to drive business.
5. Everything is measurable and data collection is easy-peasy
The beautiful thing about having a website for your business is the amount of tools that are available for tracking what your users and customers actually do with your website. The industry standard for website data is Google Analytics where you can measure everything from user demographics to their behavior with each website’s pages. For those unfamiliar with how to navigate Google Analytics, check out our “Introduction to Google Analytics” post.
Using the available tools, you are able to know what content your users are interested in and what questions they have for your business’ industry, products, or services. You potentially get to learn more about your customers than you’ve ever known!
Data collection is also a major benefit to owning a website. Instead of having your users call your business or visit in-store to find out more information about your products or services, they can fill out web forms with all of their questions and contact information or chat directly with you in a chat box- shaving off hours of paperwork and data entry that you would normally be dealing with each month.
What would you do with all of that extra time each month?
Having a great website = less data entry + more leads + more Havasupai
6. More bang for your buck
Let’s face it: advertising is expensive and many small businesses still rely on outdoor banners and phone books to drum up business. Unfortunately, as consumers become more resistant to mediums like radio and print, traditional advertising is becoming less and less effective. On the flip-side, website costs are decreasing each year and have a much larger audience than the lifetime of most traditional advertising (maybe with the exception of the average Super Bowl commercial). If you could only use one strategy: a web presence or traditional advertising- building and maintaining a website as a small business is a better investment of time and energy.
And don’t forget about the data! We still haven’t gotten solid behavioral data from a billboard yet!
7. Websites circumvent “pay-to-play” to reach your customers
The days of justifying spending thousands of dollars each month on traditional advertising in hopes of reaching new customers in your area are no longer necessary. Because the internet is built with the users in mind- a website that has engaging and interesting content, reliable products and services, and a killer design can go toe-to-toe with industry leaders or national competitors. Although the commitment to creating engaging content, great information and design come with an investment of time and energy, any business is capable of dominating their respective markets.
Too Long, Didn’t Read (TL;DR)
In today’s digital world, consumers expect to learn about what your company offers on a website- they expect it and might consider not purchasing your products or services without one. Considering 90% of Americans are online and consuming content every hour of the day, without a web presence, you’re missing out- and you can’t rely on social media to do the marketing for you.
Building and maintaining a website for your small business is the cornerstone, essential foundation to your marketing strategy. It is a worthwhile investment that will greatly pay itself off if you invest the time, energy, and maybe even a little Mojo.
Mountain Mojo Group is located in Flagstaff, Williams, the White Mountains, and Page, Arizona and provides top-quality marketing solutions and design! Our team works with small businesses all across the state of Arizona, providing a variety of marketing and design services including, social media management, photography, videography, strategy, web design, graphic design, SEO, and paid search engine marketing. Our team of creatives is ready to tackle your next marketing project. Contact our team today at (928) 440-5301 or stop by one of our offices located throughout northern Arizona.
Nick Kogos is Mountain Mojo Group’s Digital Strategist and SEM/SEO Coordinator. Nick was born and raised in the midwest and has over 10 years of marketing experience. When he’s not working, Nick is out adventuring, hiking, climbing, mountain biking, and writing for his travel blog, “Southwest Microadventures.”