I get a lot of enquiries from people that want a website – that’s great right? Well, maybe. One of the first questions I ask these people is “Why do you want a website? What are you trying to achieve?” And a lot of people are stumped by this question. To me, this is a fundamental question in starting a successful website project and actually adding value to your business.
A website has almost become a tick box on a checklist that people speed through:
- register a domain, check
- register your business, check
- get a logo designed, check
- get a website…
A lot of people get to this point, know that they should have a website, but not why.
So why do people have a website?
A website is a great tool. At a basic level, it will allow people to find your business, get some information and potentially contact you. It allows you to present your brand and point of difference rather than just being another name. It also allows you to educate potential and existing customers on what you do, your service and the products you offer. However, a brochure could deliver the same result.
Let’s look a little deeper.
Facebook could be called a website and it’s very different to what we have described above and that’s because you can use a website in many different ways. Facebook, instead of using their website as a marketing tool, are using it as the backbone to their business that generates revenue. While I’m not saying you should go out and build a Facebook for your business, you should consider how your website can help you generate revenue for your business instead of having it be just an online brochure.
Now look at a website like Gmail. While it’s not really a website and more of a web app, there are some things we can learn from this. Gmail is all about making you more efficient at email. Efficiency is probably the most overlooked area of a businesses website, but even some basic efficiency or automation on your website will ease the pressure, develop consistency and potentially save time and money.
There are 3 key areas you should be looking at:
- Marketing: how can you use your website as a platform to raise awareness about your business?
- Revenue: how can you use your website to increase your businesses revenue?
- Efficiency: how can you use your website as a platform to drive efficiency?
If you can consider these three questions when deciding that you need a website, you’ll be off to a better start that most other small businesses.