The days when a business website was optional have long since passed. Nowadays, brands have a higher probability of having a website or social media presence than offline stores or offices. But what is the importance of having a website, exactly?
Today, we’ll explain why you should consider getting a business website if you don’t already have one. And if you do, you may still find a few valuable tips for improving your online customer experience.
What Is the Importance of Having a Website
First and foremost, getting a business website boosts your credibility among potential customers. Chances are, you have multiple competitors offering similar products or services in the same price range. As a result, your potential customers are more likely to purchase from a business with a great website than without. Some may even question your business legitimacy.
Data shows that nearly 50% of internet users consider design a critical factor in a website’s credibility. Other important points include mobile responsiveness, straightforward navigation, and the presence of a contact form.
A beautifully designed, responsive, and thought-out website is the perfect opportunity to leave a good first impression. Users form an opinion about a business based on its website in less than 50 milliseconds. If they don’t like it, they will likely leave and never engage with your organization. But if they do, you can consider your leads hooked.
Furthermore, a website lets you showcase your expertise in the field or share valuable product information. Unlike social media, where users get distracted by hundreds of ads, your website is a clean canvas. You can present the information in great detail and in your preferred manner.
And if the user has decided to stay on your page, they are very likely to read your blog posts or “About Us” section.
A website is necessary not solely to build the trust of new leads. It also helps to keep existing customers informed and maintains their interest. Whenever you launch a new product, expand to a new market, or reduce prices, you need to tell your audience about it.
Social media is a great update channel, but your posts may easily get lost among others. Furthermore, you will still need to redirect followers wishing to learn more somewhere.
Email marketing is another popular option for communicating updates, but you need a website to gather a client database. In other words, updates posted on any of your channels will inevitably lead to your landing page.
As a rule of thumb, the more channels you’re present on, the more leads you get. If you only run your business on social media or offline, people won’t be able to find you via search engines. Let’s not forget that not everyone is registered on and actively uses Instagram or Facebook.
According to recent data, over 80% of internet users aged between 16 and 64 looked for a product or service to buy using search engines. Therefore, underestimating the importance of organic search engine traffic is a critical mistake for businesses nowadays.
A website also serves as a harbor of all your channels. For example, let’s assume new leads find you via Instagram ads. You may sell your products using Instagram Marketplace or Direct, but these tools don’t let you share sufficient company and product information.
If you add a website link into your bio, users interested in your product will navigate to your landing page. This will generate more traffic, boost your website in search engine results, and help increase lead interest.
The same applies to your offline store, resellers, landscape advertising, and other promotional and sales channels. People who would like to learn more should all be redirected to a single place, your home page.
From there, you can gather a potential customer database, for instance, by offering them to subscribe to your newsletter. You don’t necessarily have to opt for professional help to add lead magnets to your website. Instead, you can use cloud-based automated software such as Funnel Mates. The service will set up every step of lead generation.
Interaction between businesses and customers has never been so important. Microsoft states that over 95% of consumers consider customer service a critical factor in building their brand loyalty. Meanwhile, 33% state that they have abandoned a business relationship previously due to a lacking customer service personalization.
The same study shows that 90% of consumers expect a business to have an online channel for customer service interactions. To ensure that your customers can contact you, you should provide customer service via multiple channels. A contact form on your website is an old but still effective communication method.
Furthermore, some queries can be resolved without direct contact.
Nearly 80% of consumers admit using a self-service support portal or the FAQ section. And there’s no better place to post all the answers to common customer questions than your website. This doesn’t mean that you should replace live customer service agents with chatbots or FAQ entirely, though.
On the contrary, one-third of internet users say that not being able to talk to an actual human is the most frustrating part of their customer experience.
Branding and Design
Your website design and content help deliver who you are, what you offer, and what you stand for to your potential customers. In other words, your website design is a powerful tool to deliver your message without saying a word. Its visuals also distinguish you from competitors and help build brand recognition if the website is consistent with your branding.
Let’s assume three companies sell the same products at the same prices. However, the first company doesn’t have a website, and the second one uses a boring website template seen on hundreds of other sites. Therefore, any potential customers will most likely purchase from the third company, which has a custom-built, well-designed, and memorable website.
Data shows that nearly 40% of users won’t engage with an unattractive website, even if they’re interested in a product. And over 90% of first impressions are based entirely on website design. In short, looks matter when making and keeping a good impression.
The term “marketing funnel” refers to a customer’s journey from becoming aware of a brand to purchasing. Essentially, a marketing funnel is your advertising and sales strategy roadmap to customer conversion generation.
The first stage of a traditional marketing funnel is raising brand awareness and generating leads. This can be done using various methods, including boosting your social media presence, guest blog posts, and paid advertising.
The next step is increasing consumer interest and building a relationship. You should create a customer database at this stage – for instance, offering leads to subscribe to your newsletter. Then, after you’ve built a strong customer relationship, you can start making offers to convert your leads into paying customers.
Marketing funnels differ by type and outcome, but they all have something in common – they require a landing page.
As people move on to the next stage of your funnel, it becomes narrower. First, you start gathering leads across multiple channels. Then, you navigate all of them into one channel, your landing page. Finally, you convince a small part of your initial leads to make a purchase.
Often, marketing funnels involve email sequences or limited-time offers. Therefore, you need to add a few extra pages to your business website to implement these elements. This requires time, money, and labor investments. No wonder many business owners neglect such a powerful marketing tool as funnels, losing potential profit.
However, launching a funnel doesn’t have to be expensive and time-consuming.
Funnel Mates is an automated cloud-based marketing funnel builder. It’s suitable for businesses of any scale, within any niche, and offers hundreds of ready-made and thoroughly tested funnels.
All you need to do is add your business data from branding and share a link to the funnel via your communication channels. The service will cover the funnel design, hosting, GDPR, and everything else. Furthermore, you can use your existing domain, so no one will ever guess the funnel wasn’t made-to-order.
Offer Catalog and Sales
Your website is the easiest way to showcase your product or service catalog and make sales. Although you can sell products via existing online marketplaces, they are nowhere as convenient as your site. It lets you share detailed product data not affected by platform limitations, with high-resolution pictures and easy shareability.
Furthermore, it’s up to you to choose your website’s payment getaways and delivery options.
Offline sales channels limit your audience reach to a particular area. However, you can reach millions of potential customers worldwide using search engines or backlinks with a website. And if you offer a wide range of currencies, payment getaways, and delivery options, the distance doesn’t matter.
To run any business successfully, you should understand your target audience’s needs, pain points, and preferences. However, initial market research is seldom sufficient. The world is constantly changing, and so is any industry and its audience. Thus, you should monitor your customer behavior and feedback and adapt to it to stay afloat and develop your business.
Data offered by social media isn’t detailed enough to provide you with valuable insights. You can find out your follower age, gender, location, and interest statistics, but that’s about it.
Analytics tools for your business website are a much more powerful tool. For instance, you can learn which marketing strategies are the most effective or how each change you implement affects your sales. You can even track your website visitor’s eye movement to determine how well your navigation works.