I can’t believe I’m writing this. So I’m going to keep it short and to the point before I come to my senses and abort. You might also want to read through very quickly as this post is set to self-destruct in only a few seconds!
The reason is, there’s just something off about having to lecture or even remind anyone of the importance or benefits of having a website for their business, company or organization (non-profit) – in 2015. Ten years ago, this would have been totally understandable. At the time in countries like Nigeria, the web was still new and only gradually becoming a part of our culture.
These days, however, internet penetration and awareness is so high among the literate populace that it is frankly surprising when we meet anyone who gives off a less than average level of awareness regarding the internet. This is the same in our business culture. More and more companies utilize the internet at least for email. One would think that by now, Nigerian companies and businesses would be talking more of having their website redesigned to keep up with contemporary trends rather than having their first website built, but this is sadly true, despite apparent giant strides in terms of Web appreciation.
So I write this to inform those who’re still wondering why they need to get a website for their company or organisaton and to remind those who do know but for some reason, need a reminder.
Although there are easily more reasons than seven, I’m sure you can understand why we have a thing for the number 7, here at Level Seven 😉
1. More & More Potential Customers & Clients Are Looking For You… Online
Statistics show that more and more Nigerians are turning to the internet to find products or services they need. Print business directories never were a hit in Nigeria. Only a negligible percentage of those who even had any clue what a business directory was, had access to one. We used to depend on advertising on TV, radio or print media to so much as inform potential customers and clients of our existence. But that was for medium to large businesses who had mega bucks to throw around. Then there was word of mouth for the rest of us. But all that has changed as the advent of the web has offered a reasonably level playing field for all.
These days, most people, yes, people in Nigeria, who have access to internet enabled phones, tablets and laptops actively search for products or services they need on the internet first. They then hop on over to their website, get information on the different options and offerings available and then contact the provider who seems to offer best value or order straight from their website.
You cannot be found online this way if you do not have a website and are missing out big time on the biggest cost-effective means of generating new leads or orders for your products and services.
2. Effective Communication
Having a website helps you effectively and efficiently communicate with your target audience and general public at large. Much of the information about your business offerings and how to contact you can be easily placed on your website, saving both you and potential customers or clients, light years of time and effort.
3. Surviving Competition
This reason ought to be enough, all by itself. The sooner you take your place on the web, the better. Your competitors know this as well. You do not want to give them that clear advantage. See my piece “Why You Should Have Your Website Designed… Yesterday” for more.
4. You’re Open 24/7
Gone are the days when one had to wait till business hours of weekdays to seek out most product or service providers. Now you can keep your business open while you sleep or vacation using your website. It’ll provide potential customers and clients with required information and generate business leads.
5. Sell Directly
Websites can do much more than provide information, which is traditionally what they’re known for. Ecommerce has come to stay. Your website can take orders round the clock while dramatically slashing your overhead.
6. Build Credibility
As I mentioned before, people used to comb through the yellow pages to find companies in their area who offered products or services they needed. Companies who were listed in the yellow pages were considered credible, caring and interested enough in getting their prospective customers’ and clients’ business to make the effort to be listed and visible. The internet has taken this many steps further.
Just having a website gives a significant measure of credibility with people who’re searching for your services online. By not having one, you deprive them the opportunity to get to know you a little better before ever having to step a foot in your physical shop or office.
7. Enhanced, More Effective Marketing
Having a website is a massive enhancement to your marketing efforts. Its true that word of mouth remains the single most effective form of marketing till date. But think about it for a minute. What do people do when other people recommend a business to them? They check out their website! You should have your website address on every piece of communication or corporate material heading out of your office; business cards, letterheads, adverts, even radio jingles. People will look out for it and go check you out later before deciding to order from you or engage you for your services.
Sometime last year we responded to a 911 call from a businessman who was going abroad in a few days for an international business conference where he was going to meet lots of really big potential clients. He had a web address on his card he hadn’t registered and of course, a non-existent website. He would definitely be handing out lots of his business cards at the event and he knew his website was going to be checked out each time. You see, we love situations like these because at that point, we get to righteously charge a premium of premiums for express service. 😉
Still the fact is you do not have to wait till just when you urgently need one before storming our emergency room.
By far the best focal point for your marketing efforts today is a professionally done website. A website designed by Level Seven Ltd. Don’t let your business leave home without one.
Do get in touch with us today to discuss options getting your business online or revamping that piece of medieval relic you call a… uh.. We look forward to hearing from you!