One thing I love about the Upper Cumberland region is the community support of small businesses. Word-of-mouth marketing is central to the success of entrepreneurs in our area. With that said, as entrepreneurs it is important to remember that we can’t focus on only one marketing channel or tactic if we want to be successful and sustainable. It might not seem like you need a website when your business is located in a small town, rural area like ours, but that couldn’t be further from the truth. In 2021 a digital presence is absolutely essential.
Consumers are online (and you need to be too!)
While your customers that are longtime community residents or natives may know you exist, those that are new to the area or in need of your product/service for the first time don’t. And the way they will find you is searching online. The internet is today’s phone book, newspaper, radio/tv ad and flyer all rolled into one. If a prospective customer is searching for what you offer and you can’t be found online you are losing potential customers and money.
Most small business owners have competition. So in order to show prospective customers why they should shop with you over the other guys, your website is the place to build credibility, expertise and trust. Sharing your bio on an About page to answering common questions on a FAQ page your website gives your business a place to outshine competition and passively attract customers by making you more legit. In fact, not having a website can make some prospects not even entertain shopping with you.
Control your brand
While it’s great marketing to set up a Facebook page that shouldn’t double as your website. You don’t own your Facebook page and can’t control what a third party platform does, their existence, rules, etc. You want complete ownership of your online presence and brand, so a website is a must to secure that control.
Boost Your Business
Your website is the digital storefront for your business and an essential tool to build the “know, like, trust” factor with prospective customers. Plus it gives your current customers a central place to connect with you and learn even more about your products and services. It’s time to leverage our community small business support and get your business a functional website. The awesome thing is your website doesn’t have to cost you thousands of dollars or be 20 pages. Having a simple online presence can truly set you apart and boost your business success.
Need more convincing? Check out this article “50 Reasons Why Your Business Needs a Website“!
If you have questions about hiring website developers or DIYing your website, don’t hesitate to reach out! And stay tuned for the launch of our upcoming workshop on how to build your own website.
I really need a website- I would love to talk to someone about how you go about building it. Sounds like the workshop would be good too. Do you know if Tech has students that can do that for a small business ?
Hi Gerry! Thanks for reading this blog post. We can definitely give you some guidance on how to build a site yourself (though we currently don’t offer website design services). You can book a Start Here Meeting with me and I’m happy to show you some of the basics to get started. Our partners at TSBDC & TCRI do have internship programs that include website projects. They are on a waiting list right now, but you can reach out to Jodi Pitts at TSBDC for more info. If you have any other questions please feel free to email me at [email protected]
Excellent points once again, Jess.