Now it is easier than ever to have your very own personal/business website for your hobby, business, or whatever it is you fancy.
But, do you really need a website for your business? Well keep in mind the following:
Your have a local business so maybe having a website is not as important since you are already listed on the Yellow Pages, Yelp, Facebook, your town’s business directory, and most of your business is local.
But what about if you are thinking of expanding regionally, heck you are shooting for the starts and you want to position your business at an international stage. Maybe you already have national and international potential and current customers. Then having a website at this point is to the very least essential.
To the very least you will pay for some of the following. Website costs can added up specially if you are running a complex website.
- Annual Domain Registration
- Website Hosting
- Email Hosting (if applicable)
- SSL Certificates to secured online transactions
- Content Deliver Network
- Third party services such as online forms, online bookings, e-commerce, Pop-ups
- Maintenance – Dont’ forget your site 🙁 Remember to update the content, images, and after a few years redesign it.
- Your time
Don’t worry. You don’t have to break the bank to have a website. Here is a list of affordable, hassle free DYI website makers, providers and other alternatives.
- Any hosting provider such as HostGator, BlueHost, SiteGround, etc., give you access to website builders and one-click apps like WordPress, Drupal, Joomla, etc.
- You can ask me
First, Second and Third Impressions
Customer: “Do you have a website?”
You: “No but here is a link to my:”
- Facebook Business Page
- Yelp Business
- LinkedIn Profile
- Align-able Profile
Any of the previous alternatives can provide the customers sufficient information to form a positive decision about your business.
Let’s say you are a photographer. Instagram can be your portfolio for sure. Instagram is content driven, accessible on mobile devices and desktops, it’s clutter free, and you are able to provide the most essential information about your business and how to contact you. Paired with a Facebook Page or LinkedIn or Yelp, you basically have a full blown website. You can sell stuff, receive messages, post events, run ads, capture leads and the list goes on.
In some cases, social media outlets will be the main way your customers will interact with your business directly, so not having a website will not be the end of the world.
So if social media sounds good enough for now, here are some things to keep in mind:
- Control of your content
- Negative Association
- Branding Experience
- Custom design
- Accessibility (do I need an account to view your page?)
- Fake Users
Conclusion: Give them options.
Most likely your business needs a website to the very least to provide a space where potential and current customer can find general and important, distraction-free information about your business. Think of it as the hub to all your other channels where users can decide how they want to interact with you.
My suggestion to the very least if you decide not to have a website at this time is to go and register all the domain names associated with your business, so when it comes time to set up your site you will have your domain name for your business ready to go. By the way, you can also forward your domain to your blog, or in some cases your social media account.