Every once in a while I still come across a small business owner, usually a solo service professional, who still doesn’t have a website!
Usually they know that they need one, but just haven’t gotten around to getting one set up.
Sometimes, reminding ourselves of why something is important in the first place is a good way to motivate ourselves to do it.
In this case, there are quite a few benefits of having a website.
Prospective clients can find you: This is one of the most important reasons to have a business website. People are looking online for your services. When they search, will they find your business? If they can’t find you, they can’t hire you.
Prospective clients can learn more about you: People want to know more about the people they’re considering hiring. For B2B service professionals, this is especially important because even when you meet people in person, they will look you up online to learn more about you. When people search for you online, they should find a professional website that provides information about you and your business.
You can convey your credibility: If someone is considering hiring you, they’ll want to know about you, your background, and your experience. A good business website should include an “About” page that provides this information as well as testimonials about your work.
You can showcase your solutions: As a service professional, you help clients solve specific problems and your website can show prospective clients how you can help them (and if your business doesn’t help someone with a specific problem, you might need to rethink your business!).
You can share your expertise: A website with a business blog is a great way for you to share information about what you know. This gives prospective clients an opportunity to learn more about how you can help them. A blog also helps with search engine optimization, since it helps search engines to find your website and serve it up in the search results, which will drive more traffic to your site.
Generate leads: Once someone finds your site, make it easy for them to contact you. Prospective clients should be able to fill out a form, pick up the phone, find an email, or otherwise contact you easily so that you can follow up with them.
Serves as a hub for your social media profiles: If you are not yet using social media, you should reconsider that decision. Social media is a great way to ensure that information about your business and services can be shared online, making it easier for people to find out about you and how you can help them. Your website then becomes the glue that holds it all together.
Collect contact information from people interested in your services: Wouldn’t it be great to have access to a list of people who are interested in your services and who have voluntarily given you permission to contact them about how you can help them? You can do this with newsletter signup form on your website.
However, having a website doesn’t mean that you should have just any website. Let’s face it, some sites just don’t look good! They may be old or outdated, be cluttered, or otherwise make a less than stellar impression. Even worse, they may have a “Free website by…” at the bottom, which sends a signal to your customers that even you won’t invest in your business – why should they?
To really get the benefits of a website for your business, your site will need to serve as a professional online presence that conveys your credibility, showcases your solutions, and makes it easy for people to contact you. Additionally, it should be optimized so that people can actually find it when they search online. And, it should be easy for you to update on your own, without being tied to a web developer every time you need to make a change to your site.
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