As a website designer, I am frequently asking people to ask themselves this question – Why do I need a website? The answer obviously varies depending on the person, their business, what type of service or product they are selling, or how they want to be perceived online. Answer these simple questions yourself to see whether you need a new website.
Are you experiencing disappointing sales? Your website might be to blame.
Are your sales up? If you’re looking to continue to grow in 2016, your website could be a great place to start.
Why You Need A Website and Why Your Website Matters
This is good news for companies with great websites. Four out of five new customers or clients will head to your website or search for you online. The bad news is that it means that you only have about three seconds to capture their attention.
In the end, all roads lead to your website.
But how can you tell if your current website is good or bad for your business? How do you know if you really need a new website?
Answer the following questions to find out.
Do you have goals for your existing website? Are you exceeding those goals?
The best way to tell whether or not you need to update your website is by looking at your current site’s performance.
If you don’t have any goals, start by deciding if your website is more like a brochure—i.e. a virtual business card for your company—or a sales tool.
For brochure sites, consider using these two goals:
- Overall traffic
- Time on site
If your website is a sales tool, consider including these goals:
- Contact form submissions
- Leads generated from the internet
Once your goals are set, it’s time to ask the big question:
Is your website reaching the goals you have set?
If the answer is no, or if you’re having trouble deciding your goals in the first place, then it’s probably time for a sit-down with your marketing team or a web professional.
How does your website compare to your competitors’ websites?
Google “[your key product or service] [primary geographic area].” For example,”catering Washington, dc”
Look at the top 10 results. Those companies are your online competition.
Compare your website to theirs. Does it look similar? Does it have the same number of pages? Which site is more modern? Which is the most out of date?
Remember that 80% of people begin researching purchases online. Right now, you’re seeing exactly what those 80% of shoppers see. So think like a new customer. Based on the websites, which company would you choose?
If your competitors’ websites are clear winners over yours and you are unbiased enough to see that, then chances are you are losing out on sales.
How much traffic is coming to your website?
Analyzing website traffic is one of the easiest ways to judge the effectiveness of your website. When considering a new website, take a look at your Google Analytics data as far back as you can. Now answer these simple questions:
- What is your total traffic?
- Is it trending upward?
Total traffic: Decreasing traffic means that your website is old—and it’s just getting older. This is a clear signal that back when your website was made, it was modern enough to help you generate traffic, but as these factors have changed over the years, your website has not kept pace. Now, traffic is going elsewhere, likely to your competition.
Does your website look good on a smartphone?
Mobile access is booming. You need to make sure your website works on a smartphone.
Without a mobile-optimized website, you could be losing 1 out of every 3 visitors.
Take out your phone and look at your website. Is everything in the right place? Can you read the font? Does everything fit onto the screen? Or did your regular website pop up with fonts and sizes too small to read?
Compare your mobile website to a mobile website like Apple’s to get feel for how a properly optimized website appears.
Do you notice a big difference?
Why You Need a Website – Conclusion
The online world mirrors real life – there are winners and there are losers. Someone has to show up first on Google and someone has to show up last. A new website is an inexpensive way to establish and boost your credibility. If your website is more than 5 years old, it probably needs an update! At Connect4 Consulting, we are happy to provide a free web presence analysis. Just contact us today by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or calling 202-236-2968.