If you think of your company website as an online brochure to merely highlight your services and contact information, you miss out on its true potential as a tool that WORKS for your business.
The advancements of technology, without a doubt, wholly overhauled marketing as we know it. Traditional modes of advertising will always remain a part of the toolbox, but your website can unlock an entirely new level for your marketing efforts.
Here we will talk about seven amazing benefits your website can bring to your business.
1. Sell Your Products Online
Back in the day, selling online was difficult for small businesses to implement and manage. But today, selling online is no longer the nightmare it used to be.
Technology and functionality have progressed substantially. Today it has never been simpler to do business online.
Consequently, the demand for online shopping has skyrocketed in the US and the world. Today, people are far more likely to shop online than go to a physical location to do their shopping. If your company is not offering the option to purchase online, potential clients could move on to your competitors who do provide an e-commerce platform.
What could be better than instantly supplementing your revenue by making it easy for your clients to purchase from you online?
E-commerce platforms today provide a much higher degree of automation and flexibility than previously. As a result, the volume of online shopping has increased year on year. We are fast approaching where offering products and services online is an EXPECTATION.
Though some challenges remain in managing a web store, the positives greatly outweigh the negatives. The experience of most businesses is that going online lowers overhead, boosts profit margins, and improves overall customer satisfaction.
Even better, you can deploy an e-commerce platform on almost all up to date websites, and be accepting online payments and enjoying automated shipping in no time.
2. You can book and schedule services directly from your website.
There are great e-commerce solutions for service-based businesses, as well.
Enabling customers to make appointments or schedule services directly from your website is a win for both you and your customers.
Online scheduling reduces friction and saves time. Many people are reluctant to make an appointment or schedule a service by phone or in-person because it is inconvenient. Online scheduling and booking, therefore, makes the process instantaneous and more comfortable for the customer.
It is also excellent news for your schedule as online booking and scheduling free up resources and time that you would have otherwise spent on the phone or consulting them in person.
Online booking also makes it easy to track appointments and enables clients to schedule, reschedule, or cancel without your direct involvement.
In my case, online booking for consultations, meetings, and support has made my business processes much more streamlined and convenient for both parties.
One thing to keep in mind with an online booking system is that you must be meticulous about keeping it updated with offline bookings. Otherwise, you run the risk of double booking your appointments.
Fortunately, most online booking systems integrate with a host of calendars that you may already use, such as Google, Outlook, or Apple, to track your slots taken up by both online and offline appointments.
Most of these permit you to book an array of services, with multiple time slot options and costs, and make bookings for multiple employees.
At Movy Media, I trust WP Amelia in our clients’ websites, as one of the most robust booking systems available for WordPress.
3. Create online courses and education opportunities for passive income.
Impart your knowledge and expertise in your chosen field, and get paid for it! You are most likely carrying around in your head a treasure trove of wisdom that could benefit other people.
Turn that knowledge into content and monetize it by offering online courses.
Providing educational courses is a great way to create a fresh revenue stream for your business. It is much like selling any other product or service.
You will find that regardless of what you are deeply passionate about, like-minded people are willing to pay to access your insights. Udemy for example, has thousands of users daily who wish to continue their education online. Courses like these are convenient to learn directly from your own home at a time of your choosing. Often the courses are quite niche, and on topics, you wouldn’t usually find in regular education.
It just makes sense to convert your industry knowledge into hard cash. After the initial work of building the course, it can become an ongoing and passive stream of revenue.
Many platforms enable you to host courses on your website. Once created, the course could be useful for many months or even years without updating. If you are overloaded with work and time-poor, online courses are an excellent additional passive income for your business.
The implementation of online courses is very cost-effective. Your pricing can take into account many factors, including your expertise, the subject matter, and the lack of information available.
4. Your website can help you win new customers.
Brochure sites that list your company’s services and details can help potential clients find a local business. However, there is so much more waiting to be tapped into and utilized.
One of the most effective methods to increase traffic on your website is through SEO (search engine optimization). SEO is too large of a subject to cover in detail here, however. It mainly involves utilizing multiple strategies to make your site search engine-friendly to help drive qualified traffic to your site.
With billions of web pages available, having a website does not necessarily mean people will visit. Thankfully, there are numerous methods to help search engines like Google understand your website and its content, and recommend it within the result pages.
A professional web designer or SEO can help fine-tune the structure of your website and submit it to search engines to suggest your website as a relevant result to searchers.
Although SEO strategies do not work overnight, a well thought out SEO strategy will provide long-term traffic growth and help you develop an audience.
5. Your website plays a crucial role in generating leads
Once optimized and driving qualified traffic toward your site, you must then turn those views into sales. These are called conversions.
For this article, we will assume you are a for-profit company that provides products or services. But the same holds true for whatever business goal you have. Your conversions are whatever action you wish the user to take.
Bear in mind that visitors will arrive on your site at various stages of the purchasing process. All of these stages form a part of your website’s sales funnel. Good design will ensure visitors are encouraged to continue along the sales funnel no matter what stage they arrive.
Typically, the sales funnel stages include:
At this stage, your visitor is usually aware they have a problem that needs a solution. Or they may still be identifying what problem they have. Even though they are not ready to purchase, visitors like these are valuable if they continue to move along the sales funnel.
This is the perfect time to display empathy for their situation. To empathize, you must understand what they are feeling and what brought them to your website.
At this point in the process, content that discusses their problem is ideal for showing visitors that you understand the problem they are facing.
Let’s take our web design service as an example. Our clients believe that a website will help their business and begin to research building one. They often find out that the DIY solutions they find are limiting what they want to accomplish and get stuck in the process. Or they find out that there are many more facets to building a professional website than first meets the eye and get overwhelmed.
We empathize with these business owners who just want more time to focus on delivering an amazing service. This is where we come in with our done-for-you website design service. We manage every facet of the website, including the updates and maintenance—saving business owners the time and frustration of handling everything on their own.
We use this information to formulate our content strategy for the awareness and consideration stages.
Having identified the problem, the visitor is now looking for a solution.
At this point, you showcase your service or product that will provide their solution with your website. It should include vital information about what you are offering, and the visitor should also see social-proof that your solution is the right one for them. You can do that by displaying testimonials and reviews from your previous customers.
Put yourselves in their shoes. What would it take to convince you to buy your service?
Unlike on social media, your website is a controlled environment where you can present the solution in the best way possible with unlimited potential.
By now, your website should have positioned your product or service as the best possible solution. It’s now time to convert the prospect by a call to action. This is where a conversion takes place.
Depending on the action you wish your visitor to take, there are a variety of tools and functionality to fulfill the conversion on your website directly.
Typical conversions would be a purchase, a visitor sending a message, filling out a form, etc.
Your site is the best environment to manage and control the entire buyer journey. Fully understanding the customer’s journey – and charting how you are the best fit for their problem – will vastly increase the likelihood of converting website visitors into customers.
6. Use analytical data to study how visitors interact with your site and brand.
Online data is one crucial element that sets digital marketing apart from conventional marketing like print. Unlike traditional marketing methods, online marketing enables you to collect insightful data on how people interact with your company.
If you have put an advert in a newspaper or handed out flyers, you will wish it was possible to tell how many people read it and then took action. With print, it is pretty much a guessing game every time. The only practical measurement is inquiring directly with customers if they saw the advert, which is not very accurate.
Online marketing, by contrast, is vastly more transparent and measurable.
Google Analytics and other reporting tools are easy to install on your site. They will provide an absolute gold mine of actionable information on user behavior to tweak visitor experience.
In addition to tracking visitor behavior, tools such as ‘Pixels’ can even help you re-target customers who previously showed an interest in your product or service before.
Reporting tools allow you to collect a ton of valuable data, including but not limited to:
- Number of Visitors
- The websites where your visitors came from
- How long they spent on the site
- Which pages attracted the most attention
- Geographic Information
- A range of demographic information like age and gender
- Visitor interests
- How they navigated through your site
And the list goes on.
Collectively, this information is fantastic for analyzing your marketing efforts’ effectiveness and tweaking them for even better performance.
7. Your Website can help you retain existing customers.
Retaining customers is a whole lot cheaper than winning new ones. Here, again, your website has an essential role to play in supporting your existing customer base.
Human nature makes us compelled to chase the next big sale. But this can sometimes have the unintentional effect of putting existing customers on the back burner.
Websites often fail to have content that can support your existing customer base. However, the sites that focus on providing supportive content see an increase in customer retention and customer satisfaction.
Closing the sale is not the end of the story. You should be nurturing that relationship, and your website content can help.
With a website, you can give ongoing support to existing clients in many different ways.
- One very effective method is to create value-added content aimed at existing customers. Blogs are an excellent starting point as you can write product updates and talk about new ways to use your products or services.
- Consider publishing posts about how customers are successfully using your product or service. Link this success to how it could apply to other customers.
- Build a knowledge base for your products and services. These in-depth guides should explain in greater detail how to use your product or service, and how to get the most from them.
- Also very popular for new and existing customers are FAQs. These should tackle all the most commonly asked questions regarding your products or services.
Supportive website content that aims to assist your existing clients is super helpful in nurturing your relationship with them. It also offers an opening to work with them on other kinds of services they may need from you.
You’re bursting with ideas now, right? Think about how implementing any of these could save you massive amounts of time, or add additional revenue to your bottom line.
Yes, the possibilities are almost limitless. We hope this article on unlocking your website’s potential has sparked new ideas on how your business can go beyond the typical ‘brochure’ site.
Feel free to get in touch if you need us to clarify or expand on any points we have raised in this article. Contact us today to discuss how we can deploy these techniques on your website. We specialize in helping service-based CT businesses thrive online by building, managing, and optimizing their online presence.
To Your Success,