Why Website Builders Are Great For Your Business.
(If You Don’t Care About Profits.)
With the emergence of DIY sites like Wix and Squarespace, who really needs to hire a website designer? The promise of getting a website up & running in minutes without having to hire a pricey design firm is an irresistible lure for many small business owners.
But what’s the real lowdown on these DIY builders?
Before we get to this, we have to understand what constitutes a successful business website and how a website fits into the larger picture of an online presence.
In 2018, consumers have a lot of choices. The barrier to entry of owning a small business has been substantially lowered over past decades. Couple this with the fact that the digital age has given a business like John’s Widgets in Podunk, Alabama an instant worldwide audience and you can guess what effect competition has on a business’s ability to prosper in today’s marketplace.
Here’s the net effect, and arguably the sad reality: you can have a great product, service or idea and still go bankrupt. You can build the most amazing storefront and not have a single customer walk through the door. Why? The combination of an increase in consumer choices, the increased accessibility of those choices via the internet, and the horrendously shortened attention span that consumers have means that you have a few seconds at a time for your message to do its job. What’s your strategy to get that message in front of consumers? Does your message penetrate? If it penetrates, is it effective? If they buy, are they happy about the sale? Is it easy for them to review your company?
Where Wix and other DIY builders fall short: putting rubber to the road. With these services, you can get a decent looking website up fairly easily. Especially for someone with little or no design skills, Wix makes it easy to create something you’re proud of. The problem is that just because it looks good does not mean it will be visible or effective.
If nobody finds it – nobody will ever see it. If your message is not immediately effective with clear calls-to-action – then those who do see it will not become customers.
The key here is to be able to make the distinction between “nice” and “effective.” It takes constantly evolving strategy backed by real world experience to compete in today’s business world. The problem is that when you throw up what you believe to be a nice looking website that took you an hour to build, you get lured into a false sense of comfort. This is because you don’t often hear about the business that you miss out on.
How many times have you been called up by a potential customer that said “George listen, I came across your website – I gave it a once-over and even though everything seems to be in order and I have some money to spend – I won’t be buying from you. Have a great day.”
And you certainly won’t be getting calls from the customer that is looking for products or services you offer, but doesn’t know you exist because you don’t have a website that shows up on search engines or other areas they do research.
Add to this the fact that you are still taking time out of your own day to work on a digital marketing product that is likely not in your area of expertise. You are taking time away from what you do best – providing great value to your customers. These services are also not free. To have a website with your own web address that doesn’t display 3rd party ads is going to cost you between $14-$25 per month. Add to that what your own time is worth creating and managing this.
A great website is one part of your overall online presence. An effective website is a constantly evolving organism. Having fresh, meaningful content added on a regular basis is a great way to boost search engine rankings and stay relevant to your customers. The days of a “set it and forget it” website are over.
The bottom line: If your goal is to increase the ability of your business to attract new customers, then Wix and other website builders are extremely limiting. Is it possible to create a website for your business this way? Of course. Is it possible to represent yourself during a court proceeding? Sure. Does this mean it’s always a good idea? Not a chance. Not when the stakes are high.
Simply 40 is dedicated to helping every business owner learn what to do (and in this case, what not to do) to give their business the best online success. If we can help you in any way, please feel free to reach out to us. We are happy to help you in any way possible!