Websites. Do I need one?

Websites. Do I need one?

With coronavirus, and furlough and closures and lockdown, life is all a bit strange! Hopefully, you’re super busy with extra work at the moment, but if, like a lot of us, you’ve got a bit more time on your hands, you might be thinking about what and how to proceed when life gets back to normal! So, at a time when lots of us are tightening our belts and cutting costs where we can, one of the questions we’re hearing a lot of is ‘Are websites worth it?’. And the answer is yes.

With markets, fairs and events being cancelled for now, this is an excellent time to highlight one of the strongest plus points of websites. You can operate through the distance of cyberspace. What’s excellent about this, is that it’s not just COVID-19 related. Do you remember the summer we had a few years ago when it rained and rained and rained and everything was cancelled then too? You’d still have been able to sell your products online!

It’s not just product-based businesses that can benefit from having an online presence. By having all of the relevant information in one place, potentially videos, testimonials, price, and immediate purchasing, booking or contact options, you can shorten the sales journey for your customer, making it more likely that they buy with you.

So then the next question is ‘Shall I pay someone to do it, or do it myself?’. The answer to this one is a bit trickier. If you’ve got a budget get an expert to do it for you. If you’ve got lots of time on your hands, invest that into research and learning about websites before you start.

Thinking about websites and taking naotes!

Pros of websites:

  • They display all of the important information about you and your product
    • Testimonials
    • Contact information
    • Payment details
  • People who don’t use or buy through social media buy through websites
  • It gives you another place to sell
  • They don’t need lots and lots of your time
  • It doesn’t have to be expensive
  • A website makes you look more professional or legitimate
  • There are lots of options
    • Pro or DIY?
    • Which host?
    • Which system? WordPress, Squarespace, Wix?

Cons of websites:

  • They can be expensive to set up or make
  • To be really useful, they do need to be maintained, and that does take some time
  • If you don’t get it right, it can damage your brand
  • It needs to be compliant with regulations like GDPR (where’s your cookie policy?)
  • There are lots of options
    • Pro or DIY?
    • Which host?
    • Which system? WordPress, Squarespace, Wix?

I’ve put ‘lots of options’ into both categories because it’s both a help and a hindrance! Having lots of options gives you more choice and power as a consumer, but it can also overwhelm you with information and decisions to make.

Conclusion

I’d say, honestly, that a website done properly, will only add to your business. But, and its a big but, you need to do your research to make sure you do it the right way. As I said, there are lots of decisions to make, not least, how much do you want to pay for a website. This just means your hosting and domain name, before you get to designing and building your website. Then you also need to think about what you want your website to do- take payments, bookings, be a point of contact. How do you want your website to look?

Have a read of this and see if you can apply those principles to web design too. If you don’t have the time or the money, then a website maybe isn’t a good investment for you right now, for example, a rushed, not great quality website will damage your brand more than if you decided to just not pay for one.

Websites can be a lot of money, but it is well worth investing in your business. Also, we’re doing what we can to help, so because of the disruption caused by coronavirus, we’re offering payment plans over various timescales, so get in touch if you’re thinking about a website!

Thanks for reading!
Abbie x