Having built dozens of websites over the years, both professional and personal, I know firsthand what it’s like to go through the experience of a first-time website. I also understand designing and developing websites over time as a brand changes and business grows.
Today’s post is about four common myths people have about the purpose and benefits of a website for their business. Read through them to learn how and why believing these misconceptions can hurt your business and then join the conversation in the comments below.
Myth #1: A Website Just Sits There
This is an unfortunate misconception among both new and seasoned business owners. New entrepreneurs often think that they can set up a cookie-cutter website, replace some of the placeholder text, and never touch it again. Those same entrepreneurs too often become more seasoned business owners who have fallen into that trap and let their website sit… for years.
There are many moving pieces to a business, so yes, while some businesses that have done this have and found success, most will experience more negative repercussions if they follow this path.
Your website, especially today, is your digital representation. It is how people not only find you online but also verify and confirm your ability and authority. Consumers today expect businesses to not only have websites, but to have active, informative, and evolving websites that mirror the changes and growth happening within the company to make their products and services better for the public.
If your website is stagnant, outdated, or non-existent, it speaks volumes to your audience.
Your website has the potential to work with you and assist you like another member of your team – if you let it.
If you shift your thoughts about your website from another thing to take care of to something that can help you expand your reach and spread your message, your digital home will seem much more appealing to keep up and maintain.
Myth #2: Young Businesses Don’t Need a Website
Here’s the thing about this myth (and it’s short and sweet) – as noted above, consumers expect businesses to have an online presence… and no, simply having a social media profile doesn’t cut it. A social media profile can help you build a following, but a website will help you build a business.
A social media profile can help you build a following, but a website will help you build a business.Rose Carrie
Myth #3: A Website Will Automatically Sell Your Products and/or Services
Businesses are made up of many, many smaller parts. A website is not a single solution to a thriving business… but neither is anything else. Just like having an email address and phone number, simply having and sharing them isn’t going to guarantee you business… but they sure do help.
If you run your business from a physical location you are well aware that people can walk into your store and not buy anything. Ultimately, however, people are going to buy a lot more because your doors are open than they would if your store didn’t exist in the first place.
A website is not a single solution to a thriving business… but neither is anything else.
WHAT A WEBSITE CAN DO
A website can do extremely important things that might not yield immediately noticeable results but can have a significant positive impact over time: a website can build both trust and authority.
Why is this important?
Because customers and your relationship with them doesn’t happen instantaneously. It takes time to grow your audience and for them to consider you a recognizable brand they are comfortable following and then ultimately working with.
A website is not a guaranteed sales machine, but neither is anything else. This myth is unfortunate and has created a skewed perception of the value of websites for businesses at every stage.
Myth #4: Physical Businesses Don’t Need a Website
We live in an “and” world, not an “either/or” world. Your physical business should have a website that gives people a feeling equivalent to them entering your office or storefront, because sometimes they won’t be able (or want) to.
Sometimes business owners come to believe they don’t need a website if they have a physical business because they are comparing the website of a strictly online business to their own. Every website (just like every business) is different – that means that the goals and objectives when it comes to the design, layout, and presentation of a website for a physical store are going to be different from a website for an exclusively online business.
The goals and objectives when it comes to the design, layout, and presentation of a website for a physical store are going to be different than a website for an online business.Rose Carrie
Building a Website for Brick and Mortar Businesses
If you have a brick and mortar business, your website should be designed to introduce your visitors to your brand, help them become comfortable and familiar with what you offer, and encourage them to visit your location – something an online business wouldn’t showcase on its site.
If you can offer visitors a way to engage with and purchase your products or services on the website, even better. That, along with post-purchase resources and support could be the deciding difference between you and the competition.
There are many other ways a website can be used to support a physical business. It is all about understanding your goals and working with someone who can help you turn those goals into a visual reality.
Your Next Steps
Of course, in addition to providing you with the information above, if you have found yourself believing any of these myths (or know someone else who has), I want to leave you with some actionable steps to counteract them!
- Make sure that your website is up to date and contains a blog or podcast section for you to share industry knowledge, company updates, and build authority with both search engines and customers.
- If you run a young business or you’ve recently pivoted, updated, or rebranded, start doing your research. Explore the new workings of your business and see if your current brand is still in alignment after all those changes. If not, it might be time to speak with a business and brand coach and/or update your website.
- If you don’t have a website – get in touch! There is nothing more to say than the time is now. I can help you design your new site with an enjoyable and informative process that takes the unknown out of your next step.
Now It’s Your Turn!
Have you believed any of the myths above? If so, did this article change your mind about any of them? Have you tried any of the action items suggested at the end and how did they work for you if you did! I’m all ears and am eager to hear your story!