Revised in August 2010
As a business owner, especially a small business owner, you may have asked whether your business needs a website considering the cost for having one. Here are some pros and cons of having a website.
- A well designed website will save you time and money. Your website will be always available online even after hours, so you/your staff won’t have to answer the phone as frequently because now people have another way of getting the information they need about your business: through your website. Even better, you can reduce or even eliminate the cost for printing and distributing hand-outs, brochures, newsletter… All are already available online and ready for printing at any time.
- A well designed website will help you sell more. The website can become a powerful visual aid for your business and a knowledgeable, convincing and tireless virtual salesperson who will always be there when your clients want more information to make the buying decision.
- A well designed website will be a powerful tool that helps spreading electronic word of mouth for you business. Traditionally, word of mouth always count for a lot. With today’s web technology, online sharing and social bookmarking have made word of mouth more viral than ever. If people find your business trustworthy, they’ll possibly share it with their friends on Yelp, Facebook, LinkedIn or on their personal blogs. The sharing can be go on and on and on. Without a website, you’ll miss all of these opportunities.
- A well designed website will make your business appear more professional and more trustworthy before your potential customers because you’ve had a business phone number, a fax number and now a website and an email address from your own domain name – email@example.com.
- Last but never least, with a website, your business can be listed in various online directories including the mega web directories of Google, Yahoo! and Bing and other business-specific online directories. For your customers, these are like on-demand phone books that will come in handy and can never be tossed away.
- Your website comes at a price ranging from a couple of hundreds to thousands of dollars depending on how complicated the site will be. See below for more information about the costs of having a website.
- If poorly designed/developed, you site won’t work very well with your users and search engines. Thus, you will possibly get only a few leads from the website – not enough to compensate for the costs. Thus, what you need is not only a website, but a well designed/developed website.