What does a website do?
A website is a marketing tool that costs you one time and continues to pay you back. It expands your customer base, enhances your advertising and marketing efforts and gives your business a mark of credibility.
A website at its basic level tells millions of internet users this
- Who you are, how you began, successes you've had, your reputation in the community.
- What your company has to offer — products and services.
- How to find your location.
- The different ways to contact you (phone numbers, email, physical address).
- Special offers and upcoming promotions, new additions to products and services.
- The latest news about your company.
- What others are saying about you — Client / Customer testimonials.
The stuff that we're reading that have answers to even more questions.
The SumAll Blog
SumAll is a fantastic free service that allows you to track your performance online. It's a marketers dream.
This is the website platform that we use, their blog shows what their team up to.
Honesty Over SEO
An article written by Brandon Davenport detailing the history and progression of how search engines treat your website.
Have a question? Ask us here!
01 - I already have a web page on someone else's website. Why do I need two?
If you have a web page with your Chamber of Commerce or with a listing service in your industry or parent company (e.g. realtor.com, ShopBarrie, BarrieWaterfrontDining, etc.), that is a good thing! However, these are not websites. They more than likely only offer contact information and a brief description of your business. It lumps you into a wide category that generally includes your competitors, and in many cases, it doesn't offer the interaction with the public that your own website would offer. Lastly, you don't own the website or have control over it.
Your website will brand you as a unique business and reveals your identity. The good news is that having that page with the Chamber or other listing service will enhance and empower your new website. It will drive more traffic to your site and put you one step ahead of the marketing game. It's always vital to have your own, unique place online that your customers can visit.
02 - I don't sell merchandise online. Why do I need a website?
People want to know about you and your business. The easiest way to introduce yourself to curious customers is to have your own space online. The first place people go to learn about your business is the internet, from home, their phone or social media.
Over 70% of travelers in the United States and Europe use the Internet to set travel itineraries — and those itineraries include restaurants, accommodations, and shopping. Central Ontario is a tourist destination for many people abroad. Will you be among the choices found when they search the Internet?
If you offer something that people are looking for, a large portion of people (perhaps a market unknown to you so far) will search the internet, because it's fast and it's easy. A website will put you in the running with others online and ahead of the local competition.
03 - I have a cousin/brother/uncle who can make websites. I've already promised him that he can do ours.
Is your cousin a qualified web developer? If so, you're the lucky one. Be sure to impart a sense of urgency in getting the site completed. If he or she makes websites as a hobby, you'll want to consider the following:
A website can be compared to modes of transportation. You could ride a bicycle or drive a Mercedes — either way you can get around town, but one is more efficient, will take your farther faster, and will be a more comfortable ride.
The flashy graphics and catchy text you see on websites is only about 20% of what goes into developing the site. Behind all those pretty pages are codes and tags, specifically written to attain a higher placement in search engines, make the pages load faster and be more user friendly. Most beginners and hobbyists lack knowledge in the proper usage of codes, scripts, tags and search engine optimization. If you have a pretty web site, but no one can find it, you lose enormous marketing power.
04 - Our customers like the personal touch and most aren't computer users.
Your current customers may not use the computer much — that is possible.
A worthy concern should be about the potential customers that do use the computer and can't find you. Statistics prove that 65% of the population in rural areas uses a computer at least once per week, and 85% in metropolitan areas use a computer. These percentages have never decreased. It is likely that they will continue to increase. A website keeps you in sync with this trend.
Another interesting statistic: The fastest growing sector of the American population getting computer literate is between the ages of 50 and 75. This sector also includes those with the highest percentage of disposable income. A website helps you target that growing population.
Another thing to think about - 75 years ago, the American population felt that the telephone was an expensive luxury and not crucial to business growth. That sentiment continued for 30 years. As social communication trends changed, and expenses decreased — businesses changed to insure profitability. Use of the Internet will only increase in the next ten years.
05 - I cant afford a website right now
Surprisingly, you can get a basic, quality website built for under $1000 dollars. It's always best to consult with a respected web design / branding agency (even if they're out of your price range) to connect you with the right people or to seek advice.
Think of it like a car. If you're tight on cash, you can always sacrifice the myriad of cheap bells and whistles to focus on a solid plan, finding a good web developer to work with and a creating great website that's easy to manage.
06 - I don't even use a computer. I can't maintain a website.
Some people are great at using a computer and others have no intent on using one, let a lone using it to maintain a website. Working with Thain Sites to create a website also means helping you maintain the website. We answer your questions, show you how everything works and take care of everything. We can help you every step of the way and make any updates or changes when you need us to.
07 - Should I make a website for free with _____?
There are many free ways to make a website. Wix, Wordpress, Tumblr, etc. You can easily start a basic website, but one that often has their logos on it, sometimes ads. Everything you post on your website using a free service is in turn owned by that service. Like uploading a photo to Facebook or Instagram.
Just like the saying goes "you get what you pay for" is true for websites as well. If you have a business, or idea you see as being successful, you need a proper brand and a proper website. Your own space online that you alone control and have ownership of. You can make it unique with every last detail.
08 - Why would I need more than just a basic website?
A basic website is exactly that, basic. Your website is a valuable marketing and communications tool. It's a very important part of your business, and just like any other aspect of your business it needs to be invested in. If you have the right people working with you on your website, and you can trust their advice, your website will have an immense impact on your bottom line.
Basically, the more you invest into your website (detailed custom design, content creation, marketing, branding) the more you'll get out of it. A website is your key to success in this connected world.