What do you use the Internet for? Chances are that as well as the more trivial stuff – like chatting on Facebook and emailing – you use it a great deal to hunt out all manner of products or services. There are so many ways in which this can be done, and it’s all so convenient that many people have forgotten such widely popular pre-Internet options as the phone book. Indeed, even phone books themselves seem to have transferred online for the most part now.
If you require a given product or service, such as a holiday, stationery, gift or something entirely different, you can quickly search online and find a local provider, or even take to social media sites and find the profiles of companies there. Even small firms are very active online these days, and that’s something especially important to take notice of if you are a small company owner yourself. Failing to have a meaningful online presence leaves you basically invisible to a huge percentage of the population, and that just doesn’t make sound business sense.
So… What Should a Good Small Business Website Consist of?
The days are long gone when you could simply have a modest HTML site for your small company, complete with your postal address, a brief summary of your products or services and little else… at least, if you’d like to be competitive. Nor is it even necessary these days to have such a spartan web presence, not when there are all kinds of fully-featured small business website design packages out there for suitably small prices.
It’s important to recognise that the great amount of business that a well-designed and suitably optimised website can bring your company means that a good one should pay for itself in a reasonably short period of time. Just imagine, for example, having a website that is integrated with social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter. Rather than your company being subject to Internet chatter, which could be negative as well as positive, you’ve got the chance to actively participate in and, to a great extent, control your online reputation. It’s a great way of building your authority, with online and offline aspects of your business marketing feeding nicely into each other.
Consider, too, what something as simple as a virtual ‘shopping cart’ could do for your business. Online shops really are like more traditional physical shops in the sense that they not only need to be pleasant places to be, with plenty of relevant and accurate information about your offerings being given to customers, but also make the buying process as easy as possible. Setting up an eCommerce website allows for a greater quantity of impulse and more considered purchases alike.
Getting the Basics of Your Small Business Website Right
But of course, there are more fundamental aspects of a website that need to be right if it is to meet the requirements of a small business like yours, in both the short term and the long term. The colours, for example, need to be pleasant rather than garish, contributing to a professional and dependable image for your company. The navigation features on your website also need to be logical and intuitive, and the whole site needs to be informative and easy on the eye. It needs to be viewable for as many people as possible, which in most cases now, means investing in a mobile website as well.
It’s easy to overlook just how tricky cost-effective small business website design can be, unless you’ve had the misfortune of an inexperienced and ill-informed amateur doing yours. With the right web design company, your small business can soon be extracting much greater value from the Internet.