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Wednesday, 27 May 2015

Is Your Website Still Relevant to Your Business?

One of the most surprising things when you look at small businesses is how many of them don't have a website. You would think that in this day and age everybody would know how important a website is for all businesses. Clearly that is not the case. Any business that does not have a website is missing out on one of the most powerful marketing tools available to them. In addition to that there are many well established businesses that have websites that suck. Many business organizations rarely mind (if they do at all) what activities are happening on their web page. 

In my experience I have discovered that many Ugandan Businesses have very inactive websites. Apart from very old data that is available and weak display features, these powerful institutions have continuously indicated these websites on their brochures, billboards and other display materials. It’s a very painful exposure for one to give their Business card that has an http address which was last updated three years ago.

It’s not only the companies whose websites are online corpses; Academic institutions too can really bring down all your energy when you happen to pass by their web pages. The dead web pages are ok because one can easily take in that (swallow) but what brings more agony is that some of these institutions of learning they are at the top of ICT in all their fields of coverage.
Do I need to talk about the different Government Ministry websites, these remind me of my Primary six Science of Skeletons. Yes if you doubt my view, give it a try and check out several government websites, then you be able to judge them before you judge me. Now that I am writing about this very sensitive but usually neglected aspect of business, I will have done no good for my beloved country Uganda, awesome motherland Africa and beloved friends all over the globe if I do not share the importance of active websites.

Some of the Reasons an Active web page is Important

The main reason that it is important for businesses to have a website is how people are likely to find you. These days most people will go online and research products and companies before they make a purchase, if you don't have a website or it’s inactive you are missing out on all of this potential business. Even if people don't buy your product online they are still likely to research it online so you have to have a website so these people can learn about your business.

A website is also important because it helps you establish credibility as a business. Most people just assume that you have a website since the vast majority of businesses do, at least the vast majority of big companies do. There are actually still quite a few small businesses that don't have a website and without one this is exactly what they will remain. If you don't have a website that you can refer people to potential customers are going to assume that you are a small time company that does not take their business seriously. Once you establish this reputation it is going to be hard to make sales.

A website will not only give you credibility but it will also help to give the impression that your company is bigger and more successful than it may actually be. One of the great things about the internet is that the size of your company does not really matter. There is no reason that you can't get your site to rank in Google ahead of a large multinational competitor and funnel off some of their traffic. This is a big part of the reason that a website is even more important for a small business than a big one, it tends to level the playing field.

The website improves on your brand awareness. Companies that regularly update their web pages usually attract customers to keep coming back to find the latest products and future plans that the company is planning to offer. This is a very awesome way for companies to introduce new products to their existing clients and the potential clients.

Customer feedback and Engagement. There are 68% chances that clients will leave feedback after reading and viewing content on your website that creates value for them. For example a company that lays out an online survey campaign is likely to get responses much more faster than a physical paper survey.

Efficient SEO and SEM campaigns; It’s very true that sharing content via social media is here and it is here to stay. Companies that create relevant content on their web pages are likely to have them shared on different social media platforms. This will strongly improve your SEM and SEO since many of the search engines now provide search results that include social media results.
Clearly there are still a lot of small and big businesses that do not have websites, there are various reasons for this but mostly it comes down to the belief that they are expensive. It is rather surprising how much small business owners believe a website will cost them. In truth a website can be built for very little money and if you are on a tight budget you can even get free websites. Remember you don't need a giant ten thousand page website for your business, just a simple site that tells people about your company and your products will be more than enough.
Its time now to keep the discussion going, please drop your comment and share your experience with active and inactive company web pages.

By Mwebya Fred