Does My Business Need A Website?

Does My Business Need A Website?

Does My Business Need A Website?

Deciding whether your business requires a website boils down to addressing two fundamental questions.

  1. What purpose do you expect the website to serve?
  2. What benefit do you anticipate from having a website?

If you find it challenging to provide satisfactory answers to both of these questions, then it is safe to conclude that your business does not necessitate a website.

Merely following the trend of others and assuming that your business or new product demands a website is not a compelling enough reason to pursue one.

When considering the purpose of the website, it is important to focus not only on your goals as the business owner but also on the purpose it will serve for the visitors.

Business transactions are typically two-way interactions: you provide something valuable to meet the customer’s needs (a product, service, or information), and in return, they offer something that satisfies you (usually money, goodwill, or loyalty). A website operates on the same principle—a mutual exchange. Visitors come to the website with the expectation of having their needs or desires fulfilled, while you, as the business owner, anticipate financial gain, goodwill, or loyalty.

Regrettably, many business websites lack a practical purpose, especially for visitors. This means that when a visitor lands on the website, they should find valuable information related to their topic of interest or product, be able to make inquiries, and possibly make purchases. The website should provide more than a generic “About Us” or company profile. It should offer information on relevant business topics, product details, and, if applicable, downloadable brochures or manuals.

Additionally, it should provide easy contact information and, if appropriate, facilitate online sales or offer sample requests. If your website appears to be nothing more than an empty storefront from the visitor’s perspective—lacking any useful content—it serves no purpose for them and should not exist.

While having a website that acts as a superficial representation of your business may serve your branding needs and demonstrate your existence, it is insufficient for the visitor. Furthermore, if you disregard what visitors gain from interacting with your website, it is another valid reason not to have one. Remember, a website is not about you; it’s about satisfying the needs and wants of your visitors.

By prioritizing the needs and wants of your website visitors, you will ultimately achieve the results you desire.

Now, when we refer to the benefits of having a website, we are not solely considering the advantages for you as the business owner but also the benefits your visitors will derive.

At the very least, you may expect to benefit from increased awareness of your business or brand through your website. However, if you perceive a website as free advertising, it is crucial to reconsider this assumption.

If you create a website but lack the time, resources, or funds to promote it, few visitors will ever see your website or its advertising. The days of passively waiting for an influx of visitors or expecting a constant flow of sales are long gone.

Consequently, you must also consider what benefits you offer to your website visitors. Will they benefit from learning more about your business, the services you provide, or the products you offer? Will they gain insight into your previous work or gauge the satisfaction of other clients?

If you cannot envision ways in which your visitors will genuinely benefit from your website, it is advisable not to have one. Additionally, as a business owner, you need to assess whether your type of business is suited to leverage the advantages of having a website.

Regardless of your industry, be it a hardware store, decorating business, plumbing services, legal services, or a dental practice, your website must serve a purpose that benefits the visitor. A website is not a mere extension of a Yellow Pages listing—finding your business in the Yellow Pages is far simpler than locating it among millions of web pages.

In summary:

You should have a website if:

  • Your business or products are suitable for an online presence, and you can offer a meaningful purpose and benefit both to the visitor and yourself as the business owner.

You should NOT have a website if:

  • You can identify a purpose that will benefit you but cannot do the same for your website visitors.
  • You cannot conceive a good purpose or benefit for either yourself or your website visitors.

Therefore, if you cannot find a compelling purpose or benefit for your business or website visitors, it is unnecessary to have a website.

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