In the digital world, where consumer behaviors change daily, businesses need to adapt to meet consumer demands. One of the most efficient ways to achieve that is to have a business website. Even still in the idea stage, many businesses already plan out their websites – and how they will help them grow the company. For these reasons, in this article, we answer why a website is important for modern businesses in the digital age. Below that, you’ll find specific 23 opportunities that your business website gives you access to.
A professional website adds value to the business by opening important opportunities for increasing profitability, such as acquiring new customers and re-engaging existing ones, gaining strategic partnerships, accessing new markets, measuring ROI, building brand awareness, or testing products.
From Economics 101, we know about Supply & Demand – which your website directly addresses. That is, a website allows you to be present (i.e., offer your supply) exactly where there’s demand (i.e., online). Because of these reasons, your website is essentially a tool you can use to grow your business in the digital world.
With that, let’s explore the 23 reasons why you should create a company website and how it can help you grow.
1. Attract customers searching for your products
Research by “transaction,” a digital agency, discovered that 81% of customers first research online before committing to a purchase. Another study points out that searching for products online and e-commerce sales have grown by 27.6% in 2020 alone.
Consider that a brick-and-mortar store operates in a local area, serving only a portion of all potential customers. Not only that but also physical locations generally rely on one primary channel of acquiring new customers – leveraging existing ones. But what happens if you’re just starting and have no existing customers?
A business website introduces an entirely new set of customer acquisition channels that you cannot reach with a physical store, such as SEO. In business, this practice is known as pull marketing. In essence, it relies on prospects already searching for products like yours. Here, your strategy is to improve your website’s appearance on Google to attract more potential customers.
2. A website directly help you create demand
Your website allows you to do something no other channel can – create demand for your products for people who aren’t yet in the purchase phase.
By doing SEO on more border subjects, you can smartly funnel visitors into purchasing a solution for their problems. On the other hand, you can decide to advertise to people who show interest in your products. Alternatively, you can even supplement your Word-of-Mouth marketing with incentive programs.
Imagine this – someone who has problems in their garden doesn’t start by searching for a product. Instead, they first examine what the problem is and what causes it. They aren’t ready to buy just yet – but by being present and answering their questions right away, you open the doors to turning them into customers.
3. Your website gives you access to new markets
Your website is a doorway to the global market. With a website, you can reach audiences in geographically distant areas. This is something you’d typically need a ton of resources to achieve with physical locations.
Any potential customer with access to the internet can access your website from anywhere around the world – and do business with you. This benefit opens the doors to faster growth and expansion – which can, in turn, supplement the expansion of your physical stores.
4. Website ads help you reach a broader audience
Whether looking for a quick boost or a scale-up strategy, a website helps you reach new audiences. Using adverts on popular platforms like Google Ads and Facebook Ads, you can show your products to relevant people who otherwise wouldn’t consider them.
Such platforms help you create laser-targeted offers that attract relevant audiences. For example, based on their search behavior (keywords), websites they visit, or interests the platform deems relevant to the user.
5. It helps you get customers around the clock
One of the great benefits of having a website is selling your products or services around the clock. You don’t have to “close down for the day” with a website – while still earning passive income.
Simply embedding a calendar allows your customers to book you for days in advance – even if you’re asleep when that happens.
Similarly, having a website that supports e-commerce transactions means you can fill up a pipeline of orders even before you’ve gotten out of bed – which is excellent for business.
6. A website attracts more potential partners
As per The Telegraph’s report, external business partners are crucial for the success of many companies.
If you have physical products, it’s much harder for potential partners to understand your supply chain without a website. This makes it harder to pinpoint precisely where you might be able to improve with what they have to offer.
A website opens the doors to that as it requires much less time investment from potential partners to understand if they are the right fit for you. Additionally, it also presents your company to them, which they will use to determine whether you’re the right personality fit.
7. Your website makes your investment measurable
While advertising on most traditional platforms doesn’t allow you to directly measure your returns, things are different online. A website allows you not only to reach new audiences by advertising, but it also makes things quantifiable.
Modern platforms and tools for digital analytics allow you to track exactly how and where your ad appears – and how much you earn back from it. This means that, in a way, a website allows you to run a much leaner and bootstrapped company.
In essence, you get immediate feedback on which campaigns perform well. In that case, you can quickly stop the ads that aren’t moving the needle – and only focus on the profitable ones.
Additionally, while not bulletproof, most digital analytics tools also allow you to track how your website is being used. Essentially, this is yet another opportunity to understand where your advertising dollars go – and their impact on your bottom line.
Being able to attribute sales to specific marketing activities allows you to measure your return on investment and justify your spending on each channel.
8. Helps you collect competitor intelligence
A website also indirectly allows you to collect competitor intelligence better. That is, you can always find your competitors’ websites and research them. However, having a website enables you to compare how your vs. their efforts influence your market space.
For example, suppose you’re trying to be found for a particular set of words when customers search. Here, you can compare that to your competitors and define whether they are actively investing in SEO. From this, you can conclude whether these marketing efforts are worth it.
Additionally, suppose you’re a new business and don’t yet have access to a big audience. In that case, you can research competitor websites to understand what Unique Selling Propositions work better in your industry and implement them on your website.
Lastly, from an advertising perspective, with tools like Facebook Ads, you can compare the performance of audiences that you create yourself – versus those of competitors.
9. A website helps you create customer personas
A website provides a much detailed look into your customer personas and shopping behavior.
Like some of the other points from above, your website’s analytics help you understand your product performance. That is, you can learn which products sell better with what customer type. Based on that knowledge, you can then decide how to frame and present your products in their best light for that customer group.
As the popular business advice goes – don’t talk about features, talk about benefits. Understanding your customers helps you highlight the essential components of your products that they care about – which is an invaluable practice for any business. With the help of a few tools for digital analytics, you can quickly transcribe your features into benefits.
Granted, having a one-on-one connection with important customers is invaluable and can teach you a lot. But at the very least, your website can serve as a proving ground. That is, you can use it to test whether the feedback your initial customers gave you is genuine – or if it comes with certain biases.
10. A website helps you quickly test new products
Your website opens up an excellent opportunity to test completely new products or improve your current products.
For example, by running a survey on your website, you can reach a critical mass of potential customers much faster and get their feedback. Additionally, the possible tradeoff you need to offer in return for them completing the survey can also be much cheaper than when done in-person. For example, such can be some downloadable digital product – instead of, say, free stock or discounts.
11. Websites make it easier to upsell products
A website allows you also to sell more and new products to existing customers. That is, whenever you launch a product, having a database of website visitors or customers can open the possibility of remarketing to them – and offering your new products.
People who have already shopped with you are 60-70% more likely to do so again. For such customers, upselling is an effective strategy to improve your sales numbers. Using this strategy can prove to be very effective in raising your revenue in both the short and long terms.
With either an email campaign or a Facebook retargeting ad, you can quickly boost sales for a given product by offering it to existing customers.
12. It helps customers find your physical store
One of the great side benefits of being on the internet is the ability for others to find you easily. This idea also applies to your physical store. Simply having your website allows people to find your physical address and visit your location more often.
Doing this can be especially helpful for potential customers looking for your location at the moment. That is, having a website helps Google list your website on Google Maps. In turn, this means customers can set their GPS to your location with a single click – instead of potentially going to your competitors.
13. You can build a brand faster with a website
Your website provides an excellent opportunity for people to share news and accomplishments from your company. This allows you to build a stronger brand much faster than traditional channels like flyers, TV commercials, or newspaper and radio ads.
People have an easier time sharing your company and have more touchpoints with the business, allowing them to find something they like. For example, this could be your website layout, the content you produce, the images and videos of your products, etc.
All of these assets give people more opportunities to talk about you – which is yet another benefit for your brand both short- and long-term. Such elements are highly sharable and much easier to distribute than, say, pictures of your physical store.
14. Website mentions boost word-of-mouth marketing
A website offers a great incentive for customers to share your company with others and thus naturally boost your word-of-mouth marketing. If a customer wants to recommend your products, they can simply link them to their friends.
These functions make the process of recommendation much faster – and thus decrease the time it takes someone new to become a customer. In turn, this results in acquiring customers faster – and at an ever-accelerating rate.
15. Adds more value to new & existing customers
A website doesn’t only have to focus on new customers. That is, with a website, you can also improve your existing customers’ perception of your business.
For example, even if you sell very complex technical products, you can offer PDF manuals on your site for download. Alternatively, you can have supporting articles for your products that help existing customers setup, use, or troubleshoot their products.
16. A website builds trust with future customers
Becoming trustworthy is hard – and most customers don’t invest the time into learning all intricacies revolving around your business.
A website allows you to build trust in an industry more efficiently. Essentially, your website is “a large brochure” where you can put credible information about your experience – be it in the form of certificates or testimonials.
17. Boosts your personal brand & credibility
Even if you decide to transition to a different business later, your name will be alive on the internet. A professional website builds credibility for any potential customer, partner, or employer in the future.
Furthermore, platforms like Google are now incorporating E-A-T as part of their algorithm. The acronym stands for “Expertise, Authoritativeness, and Trust” and is associated with authors on the internet. The more content you produce under your name, the more credibility you gain in Google’s eyes.
This means that your future endeavors will also be easier – and you’ll have a higher chance of appearing high up in Google when someone searches.
18. A website lets you “own” your customers
Suppose you use 3rd party sales platforms like Amazon to gather an audience. In that case, you essentially give up on the opportunity of “owning” your customers. While Amazon comes with great benefits for many companies, it also has downsides that you can address by having a website.
One such invaluable piece of information is customer details. This can be anything from behavioral statistics that help you increase sales overall – or even contact information of individuals you can give offers to and try to upsell. Platforms like Amazon keep that information, which you don’t have access to, making it harder to run your business.
To circumvent that, in the products you distribute through Amazon, you can offer an incentive for people to visit your website. For example, you can create a custom landing page for everyone who has purchased through Amazon. That way, you can create custom audiences to advertise to these people on other platforms like Facebook.
19. You save the commissions from other platforms
Suppose you decide to expand your physical business into the digital realm. In that case, it’s best to eventually operate out of your website rather than using a 3rd party platform. As we touched upon above, platforms like Amazon can be great to gain sales for companies transitioning into the digital world.
However, this also means you’ll have lower margins. That’s because of the commissions and fees you have to provide to platforms like Amazon, which technically brought you the customers.
For young and small companies, these margins are vital since they can halter growth. And over time, this can add up to significant amounts of capital that could have otherwise further fueled the company’s growth.
In contrast, your website allows you to keep the entire profit of the sale. However, in all fairness, we should also address the upfront costs. Setting up Amazon can be a straightforward beginning for many companies. Meanwhile, a website supporting e-commerce can be more costly upfront – and requires you to create and manage a supply chain.
20. It has functionalities that make you flexible
In essence, your website also allows you to be more flexible functionality-wise. That is, you can quickly repurpose it to serve other functions, too. For example, in times when you’re unable to sell through a brick-and-mortar store, you can transition your website into an e-commerce platform.
In combination with a physical store, your website also offers you yet another chance of being more versatile and resistant to changes on the global market. As we’ve experienced in the last year, many physical businesses had to close their doors to customers – essentially rending those without a website unable to operate.
21. Requires less upkeep than brick-and-mortar
While websites do require the occasional maintenance update, in general, they require less upkeep than their physical counterparts. Nowadays, you can run an entire business without even having a physical location.
In the short term, that can feel intimidating. However, this can save you the costs and troubles of operating a physical location in the long run. Anyone with experience in managing a physical location can tell you how quickly the costs start adding up.
22. Adds more assets to your business
Your website is yet another investment in your business. If you plan on eventually selling the business, this means that your website can be counted as part of your company’s assets.
Essentially, a website can increase your business’ value in two ways. Firstly, it is direct investment and business asset, meaning that it adds value to your business’ worth.
Secondly, a well-maintained website that you’ve used to acquire customers can also indirectly increase your business’s value in the eyes of potential buyers. Essentially, your site showcases that you have a brand people recognize and visit.
If you only rely on a physical location, it’s much harder to measure how many visitors enter the store and complete a purchase (or leave). These metrics are critical in acquisitions since they serve as a gauge for the health of the business.
Meanwhile, calculating such numbers from your website is much easier. While they rarely portray the exact picture due to many technical limitations – they provide an excellent estimate containing first-hand data.
This data can give you an advantage when considering selling the business. Instead of having to be judged against 3rd party industry-averages data, you can now use your data as an argument to raise the price of your healthy business.
23. Brings a satisfying feeling of accomplishment
Lastly, a large part of our overall happiness comes from our work. Specifically, we know that for us to be generally happy in life, our work needs to bring us satisfaction and a feeling of accomplishment.
Whether you built it yourself or outsourced the work and only supervised the project, a professional website for your business helps achieve that feeling. It also allows you to present it to the rest of the world proudly.
As explained in the points above, a website is an invaluable asset to any company in the modern digital age. In this article, we covered the function and importance of having a professional website in business.
Now that you see the value of creating a website, here’s a guide that will help you make your website more attractive, engaging, and appealing to potential customers.
Alternatively, if you’ve already done this step and are now facing tough competition, these two articles can help you on your journey: Why is my competitor ranking higher in Google? and How to outrank your competition on Google.