How do you avoid having one of the 81% of small business websites that don’t bring in more business?
By understanding and avoiding these seven common website myths that stop your website being profitable:
Myth 1: If you build it, they will come
The idea that “if you build it, they will come” worked for Kevin Costner in the movie “Field of Dreams”, but it doesn’t work for websites. Yet this is the most persistent and dangerous website myth.
Many people assume that if they put a site up on the web they’ll be swamped with customer enquiries and new business. They won’t.
Customers don’t just magically appear at your site. You must have cost-effective ways of generating targeted traffic. And you have to use proven strategies and techniques to convert browsers into customer enquiries and sales.
Myth 2: I don’t need a website because I don’t sell anything online
For a long time the media touted e-commerce as the ultimate goal of a website. But for most businesses, customer enquiries or sales leads is the best goal to aim for. That’s because many people now use Google like an online Yellow Pages. (But hardly anyone uses the real online Yellow Pages because it’s crap!)
The number one activity on the internet is gathering information about things to buy – both on- and off-line. People are searching for everything from carpenters to cosmetic surgeons. If your website doesn’t appear when people “Google” the types of products and services you sell, you’re leaking customers to the competition.
Myth 3: You only need a website if you want to sell globally
One benefit of a website is that it can introduce your business to a global market. But a website is a great tool for growing local businesses too.
That’s because 73% of consumers use search engines to find local businesses to buy from. In fact, a survey in 2007 showed searching for local businesses was the second most popular activity on the Internet after email.
Myth 4: The key to a successful website is a first page listing in Google
Search engine optimisation (SEO) firms would have you think that getting to number one in Google is the key to a successful website. Sure, high search engine rankings help bring traffic to your site. But what’s more important, and more profitable, is converting your website visitors into paying customers.
Myth 5: Snazzy design is the most important part of a website
Most businesses put the majority of their website budget into creating a good-looking design. The content – the part that actually sells – is usually an afterthought. Don’t underestimate the importance of good website design. But without high quality content your website will fail. Your priorities should be: good design, great content.
Myth 6: A website is just an online brochure
Done properly a business website can be an automatic marketing system that delivers customer enquiries and highly qualified sales leads. It can be a 24/7 salesperson that never forgets a sales point, answers every objection and always goes for the close. It can be so much more than just an online brochure.
Myth 7: Websites don’t work
Only 19% of small business websites bring in more business, so statistically speaking this is correct. But perhaps you’re wondering how your site can be amongst the successful ones. The answer is by applying proven online marketing strategies and principles. It won’t happen overnight, but it can happen.