It is hard to imagine running a business without having a website. A website is essential to giving a professional image to your customers, suppliers and staff.
According to a 2014 survey, 45% of UK businesses do not have a website. This is incredible, as most of us perceive that ‘everything’s online these days’. In fact it’s not. 18% of UK small business income is from online sales. Over 63% is from invoices and 10% from face-to-face sales.
A one-page website, with a domain name (web address) costs only a few hundred pounds. You will also have the ability to have several email addresses. This looks really professional on your business card and other printed marketing material. You could setup ‘[email protected]’ and ‘[email protected]’ group email addresses, which forward emails to a number of people. These are great for teams where staff move on to other roles internally, so individual named accounts don’t continue to receive enquiries for their previous job role.
The world is really small thanks to HTML – the code behind all web content. You don’t need to even understand HTML code, as Content Management Systems (CMS) like WordPress, Joomla and Drupal are all relatively easy to use. These systems allow you to add and edit pages without having to ‘geek out’ in web code.
Top tips – set a budget for your web site. You may also need graphics designed too – photos, logos, banners, footers and ‘in-fill’ images. Other key features to consider are a contact form and ‘on-page’ Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) tools. Ask peer businesses for recommendations and explain that someone recommended them when you call the web designer’s sales number. Meet up with at least three web design companies, and agree a fixed price or a maximum budget for your project.
Are you one of the 55% of businesses who benefit from an effective website?
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