What’s a website to you? Is it an evolving, useable, virtual business location that generates sales for your company, or is it the creepy bodega on the corner that has two aisles covered in dust?
Your site, whether you spend $300 a month or $100 every ten years, is a reflection of your brand; it is just like having a second location of your business. And why does this online presence matter?
If you think one of your competitors doesn’t have an edge by having a volume of flashy signs, advertisements and word-of-mouth clout, you may not be fit to run a lemonade stand, let alone a progressive business. Just as you have competition in the physical business world, the same resides on the web. Understanding the value of your website and the inbound marketing tools that promote lead-generation and sales will give you a leg up on your cutthroat neighbors.
68% of U.S. online shoppers agree that they will distrust a site that has an unprofessional appearance (eMarketer). So, as I said before, what’s your site look like? If it resembles this, chances are your visitors are not only going to laugh at your credibility, but speak foul of it publicly; no business needs that. Clean it up!
In 2010, alone, American spent $186 billion in online transactions (Nelson). You can’t afford to not have a piece of that pie. The better your website is optimized (SEO), updated (content) and prepared (simple forms) for interested online visitors, the more likely you are to see an increase in leads and sales that stem from your site. Directing more online visitors through more mediums will help them find you.
Using inbound marketing tools (SEO, PR, social media, etc.) are great mediums to use to stimulate traffic activity and even online community buzz. Think of them as the road map, ads and signs you would see for a business’ physical location. After all the hard work you put in (or maybe none at all), what is the consumer going to find when they finally get to your site?