The recession forced many people to think differently about the way they work. Redundancy, or the threat of it, caused huge numbers of workers to step off the corporate treadmill and try going it alone, with more small business ventures than ever before.
As some of these budding entrepreneurs quickly discovered, having a great idea for a business is not enough to ensure financial success. Even the best and most innovative products and services need an appropriate marketing plan if they are to capture the imaginations of their target audience, and a web presence is a major factor in reaching that audience.
Not Just Any Old Website
Sadly, far too many new businesses fail to understand the huge importance of digital marketing, causing many startups to sink without trace within just a few months. According to The Guardian, a recent survey into 10,000 small UK businesses showed that over 80% of them had a web presence. Unfortunately further research revealed that 80% of the websites were simply not fit for purpose.
An unsatisfactory website may not seem particularly harmful but in fact consumers judge companies harshly if their web presence is inappropriate, difficult to navigate, slow to load or unattractive in design. It seems that we expect to click, swipe and tap our way to relevant and timely information and we’re not prepared to give companies second chances.
The facts are backed up by an article on the This Is Money website, which lists having a company website as essential. The article points out that a lack of web presence not only deters prospective customers but can also disappoint current clients.
Invest in Digital Marketing
The message needs to be sent out to every small business throughout the country – invest in a great digital marketing strategy or face the possibility of financial ruin. Every lost customer is another nail in your company’s coffin while boosting the coffers of your competitors. The key is to ensure that prospective customers never leave your site until they’ve make a purchase.
If you’re particularly tech-savvy then you might want to have a go at developing your own site – after all there are plenty of online companies offering templates with drag and drop technology to simplify the process. However, the digital revolution shows no signs of slowing down and search engines continually tweak and refine their algorithms, making it all too easy for a self-build site to slip off the radar.
To ensure that your digital marketing strategy stays current it’s far preferable to seek out some professional advice, which doesn’t have to cost a fortune, particularly if you search outside London. Search for website design in Swansea, for example and you’ll quickly find companies such as Swansea web designers Accent-ADC who will spend time finding out what your goals are before working with you to develop a site that fulfils your business needs.
Nowadays it’s important to factor in social media in your marketing strategy too, which is where professional expertise really pays dividends. Ask yourself whether you can really afford not to spend part of your budget on a digital marketing campaign, as this is what will attract customers to your door.