Pros and Cons Of Having a Business Website
Does your business need a website?
A website is a powerful marketing, brand-building, and lead generation tool. If you are in the process of deciding whether your business needs a website, consider the following pros and cons.
Save money on printing and distribution costs for hard-copy marketing materials:
A business website can serve as an online marketing tool replacing traditional printed marketing materials such as catalogs, price lists, and brochures. You can refer customers to your website where they can see online versions of your marketing materials. Apart from cost savings, online versions have the added advantage of being available to prospective customers anytime, anywhere, as well enabling a business to easily update their marketing materials without having to reprint new copies.
Save time, and improve productivity:
A website saves you and your staff time spent educating new customers about your business and what is offers.
A website is your listing on today's "yellow pages":
The internet is akin to the yellow pages which at one time used to be a crucial advertising tool for businesses before the internet era turned it obsolete. A business's website is essentially a listing on internet, which is somewhat akin to having a listing on the yellow pages of yesteryear. As customers increasingly turn to the internet to search for businesses and products, not having a website means your business is losing out on this exposure and prospective sales opoortunity.
Reach a global audience:
Using your website, you can reach customers from all corners of the world, who can access your website, learn about your business, and its products/serivce, anytime, anywhere.
Adopt internet marketing to reach more customers:
Without a website, your business will have to rely solely on offline marketing channels to generate sales. Having a website enables a business to engage in online marketing (such as having your business listed in online directories, and online marketplaces such as Alibaba), email marketing, social media marketing and search engine marketing.
Build your brand and business reputation:
Having a professionally developed website has become a staple for businesses particularly among the younger generation of tech-savvy consumers who often turn to the internet to research a business and its products before making a purchase decision. A business with a website is more likely to have a greater impression on first time customers compared to a business without a website or a business with a poorly-designed website.
While a local customer can call you during working hours to inquire about your business, a customer overseas in a different time zone will either have to send an email and wait for you to reply, or they could move on to one of your competitors that does have a website that offers preliminary ifnormation needed to make a purchase decision. Having a website enables you to reach customers at their convenience.
Website development and maintenance costs:
Building, and maintaining a business website is an expense.
A website can be used as a powerful marketing tool for a business. Although the business will have to bear initial development costs and annual maintenance costs, these costs are generally very affordable with many sole-proprietorship businesses and individual freelancers owning websites to market their business. Furthermore, the website could greatly enhance a business's brand and reputation, which coupled with strong marketing could generate sales that far exceed the cost of maintaing the website.