Most SME’s have a website these days, which is good, but what is the importance of a good website to a Local Business? It’s easy to imagine that the importance of a website would be defined by the business. That is not strictly true, these days there is hardly a product or service that is not searched for online in great numbers daily, meaning every type of business can benefit from having a website. So, if there are people searching online for what your company offer, it makes sense that having a website is important, otherwise those customers will not find your business. This is as true for local business as it is for the major corporations.
That’s not the only reason a website is hugely important to the success of any local business, besides the increased potential discover-ability, a website provides a local company with the opportunity to market & promote their business using both paid for and free advertising streams. Perhaps most important of all, a website will also make it easier for your customers to contact you, to ask questions and of course to make reservations or purchases. So having a website built for your business is undoubtedly a good idea.
There are two very important basic factors to having a website for your business, you need to have a good website and that website needs to be seen. Having a good website that no-one sees is a waste. Having a highly visible website that doesn’t convert your visitors into customers is a waste!
Your website is representing your business, your website needs to be professional and user-friendly. The average time spent on a website is only 7 seconds, that’s how quick a visitor will decide if the website is going to offer what they are seeking. The main reasons your potential customers will leave your website are: its appearance is off-putting, it does not offer what they were looking for and it is not easy to navigate around. The first and last reasons relate to the design and build of the website. The middle point relates to the website’s relevancy in the search engines. It’s just one click to return to the search engines and move onto the next website in the listing, so your website needs to give your visitors a reason to stay.
However, the majority of websites are not even seen by the masses on the search engines! 90% of people searching online will only browse the first 2 pages of a search engine, that is just 20 listings. There is good reason for this, the search engines want their customers to have a good experience, they want them to be able to find what they are looking for quickly and easily. In order to achieve this the search engines qualify a websites relevance to a searchers enquiry. As a result those top 20 listings will provide the searcher what they are looking for and for most people 20 options to buy a product or service is more than enough! So it’s easy to see why the majority of people will not venture past page 2 on the search engines.
For a website to be successful it needs to be visible, for it to be visible it needs to be qualified by the search engines and that doesn’t happen automatically. The website needs to be optimised both for the search engines to qualify your website and to out-rank your competitors online to ensure a good position in the search engines.
Achieving page 1 ranking for the relevant search terms will catapult your website into the public domain, driving increased traffic and generating more customers. However, this has to be done correctly, with focus and understanding. Sadly, some Internet Marketers will focus purely on quantity, driving hundreds and thousands of visitors to a website each month. Without focus the quality of those visitors will be lacking and essentially what you will have is thousands of visitors to your site who will not convert into customers, this is where Internet Marketing is no different from any other, if you are not attracting interest from the right people your time and money is being wasted.
You could have a great website design, great content, the lowest prices, the best service and be the best in the business but all your efforts will be useless unless your website is drawing traffic that is interested in what you are providing or promoting.
This is especially important for local business’ as you not only have to focus on your product-market but also take into account your geographical market. Products and services provided by local business’ are searched online by thousands of local people everyday. These are the people you want your website to be visible to. If you provide your service in Sussex, you do not want people visiting your website from Manchester (or even further afield, remember the internet is global), these people will not convert to customers, you want people in Sussex searching for your product or service to find your website, for them to realise it is relevant to them, enjoy their experience on your website and become a customer.
If you would like to find out how your website is currently ranking enquire here. We will email you a brief report for FREE! Understanding the importance of a website to a local business can have a massive positive impact on your business.