There are many articles out there that talk about the benefits of business websites. I, for one, have many websites I use to promote either my work or my writing. In addition to my daytime job I have the dubious honour of being a self-published author. I say dubious because it is quite a challenge being seen by my prospective audience – I only wish I could dedicate the whole week to it!
As a result of my personal experiences I know that I would not be able to function, either in my business or as an author without my precious home bases, namely my business websites.
While business websites have good and bad aspects, I would say that the bad aspects can be overcome by a little planning and vigilance. Let’s take a look:
- Business websites are the only place on the Internet where you have complete control of the environment (that is to the extent anyone has control over anything where the Internet waters are full of cyber sharks). Providing your website is built with security in mind you should have few problems with intruders and attackers.
- Using business websites to promote your business through your customer reviews and testimonials helps protect you from divisive attacks on your business. You can also use your precious collection as valid arguments against platforms that host such aberrant reviews.
- They say that it’s cheaper to advertise your company using your business website. Unfortunately that’s a little like trying to give me the definitive length of a piece of string. I would prefer to say that your spend can be better managed by focusing it around a website rather than spending on social media where you are dependent upon their undeclared marketing algorithms.
- Stay in touch with you customers – use your business website to manage support, whether it’s helping a client choose their correct product or follow up support for your products or services. This can be integrated with social media, especially Facebook where a good number of companies use their Facebook presence to interact with customers.
- Your website is also the place to promote your ideas as well as services or products. Become your audience’s online subject matter expert. This will increase your website’s SEO – being linked to by other websites who rate your information is a very good thing! It draws new visitors. If the content of your website is what they want, they will stay and more importantly, buy.
- Your business website remains open for business 24/7. Depending upon what you do for your business, it can be selling while you sleep, or it can be informing prospective clients while you’re out at dinner or the pub. That can only be good!
- Sell online! If you don’t do this already this is a new revenue channel for your business. It’s also a way to connect with a new audience because those you see face to face on your premises will often not be those that visit you online.
If I put some more thought into it I imagine I could come up with a few more reasons why you really need a website but let’s face it, if you’re not interested in a website by now I don’t imagine a few more reasons will change your mind. So, in the spirit of full disclosure, let’s look at some issues you can have with a website. Notice I didn’t say problems, simply issues.
- If you don’t choose the right hosting company you could well have performance problems you cannot resolve short of moving to another provider – always at a cost.
- Security is commonly a problem that few website designers or those who do it themselves consider, at least not effectively. Everything from Two-Factor Authentication, malware, SQL -injection, and many other things make your website potentially vulnerable. If you SSL-encrypt your website you do have a level of security but it comes at a price.
- You will probably have heard that Google and web browser companies are encouraging website owners to SSL-encrypt their sites; some of this encouragement seems to me to be tantamount to bullying. They say it is SEO beneficial but chances are the uplift is less than the value of the financial cost. Generally I would recommend considering SSL-encryption for online shops but instead these can still use secure checkouts such as PayPal and WorldPay. This is a choice you can make and depends on your financial budget.
- Technical support – how do you handle this? There are many ways this can be done. Pay a company, do it yourself, hope your hosting provider can help you. Say you have built it yourself in, for example, WordPress, and you get the ‘white screen of death’ as it’s known? Would you know what to do or how to find the answer?
These issues seem potentially insurmountable or expensive but neither need be the case.
Want A Website has given this a great deal of thought and the one thing we are good at is helping our navigate clients through this maze. Having seen the sorts of prices other website designers charge for their services, from hosting to building and supporting websites, we think we have struck the right balance to enable you to achieve your goals.
We offer hosting and website building at very competitive prices without outsourcing to another country; as for our support pricing you can check them out by clicking here, and finally when your website is complete we provide you, our client, with a video that takes them for a walk through administering their website so that they do not have to rely on us to make changes, add articles or other day-to-day activities. We even partner with Inala Technology Solutions to provide you with some very salient online training to help you understand more.
That’s how we keep your costs down. Get in touch to have a no obligation chat about how we could help you get started.