Whether your business is big or small, these days it is a necessity to create and maintain a website for your business. While there may be a relatively small investment involved upfront, maintenance is generally quite simple, with annual costs usually less than $100 per year. Though it may seem that something that requires so little to get going would not be worth the effort, this is simply not the case.
These days, phone books are becoming a thing of the past. While many people still turn to the yellow pages when they need a particular product or service, the reality is that far more now are looking to the Internet for information. While your business will generally be listed online due to the presence in the phone book, many customers will look for a website to obtain more information. If you don't offer a website, they will likely move on to your competitor without a second thought.
Very few companies, particularly those that are small, have the ability to offer an answering service 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Having a website that provides detailed information about a given product or service ensures that no matter what time of day it is, consumers can always access the information they need. A FAQ, or Frequently Asked Questions, page is a must to ensure that consumers get all of their pressing questions answered. While you can't predict all questions, you can answer most of them through this page.
A website can also provide background information on the company and the employees. Adding a page with some personal information, such as educational experience, position in the company, and a random piece of entertaining information can help form an emotional bond in the mind of a customer. This can help them think of the business as more of a group of people, rather than an abstract entity focused on taking their hard-earned money.
Websites easily cross the bounds of geography, potentially resulting in orders or requests from thousands of miles away. Since a website can be seen by literally anyone in the world with Internet access, this opens up the doors to new business opportunities and potential partnerships. In addition, a professional, informative website may attract prospective employees that are interested specifically in that type of business.
Products may also be showcased on a website. Regardless of whether or not you decide to expand into e-commerce, the ability to look at products without leaving their home will likely attract consumers. New suppliers may also be attracted by a website. Partnering with new suppliers and offering new products can only help your business grow.