How does a website benefit a business?


Every business has unique aspirations and goals. They all want to find the most efficient and cost-effective way to reach those goals.

A website has many features. A business can harness these features to help achieve its goals. Not all features are universally beneficial. Some may be more relevant than others. I am confident that every business can benefit from at least one of the features.

The question of how valuable a website is to a business depends on its goals. The key to defining the value of a website comes from defining a business's goals. A website that aligns with and advances these goals is more valuable.

In this article, I will examine the main benefits of a website to a business. I believe outlining these benefits will lead to more consideration of how a website can affect a business. These considerations, I hope, will lead to a more valuable and effective website. 

Let's start by laying out website features that can benefit a business.

What features of websites create value for a business?

A website has many features which create value for businesses. Although every feature is not valuable to every business, at least one always is. I think it is worth breaking down these features and how the value they create.

Reach and visibility

Having a website makes a business more visible. A website is findable by anyone through search engines. It expands a business's reach to infinity. Once online, it can harness its new findability to share its message and make its change happen.

Other tools do exist that achieve the same thing. Social media and third-party marketing tools offer the same advantages. They do not achieve it in quite the same way. A website provides the ultimate freedom in sharing the owner's message. Let's discuss this next.

Asset ownership

Social media and marketing platforms may offer the chance to expand a business's reach and engagement. They do come with strings attached. Their policies, guidelines and algorithms indirectly affect a business's messaging. They must always play by the platform's rules to get the most out of them. Ultimately, the entity that makes the most out of a marketing or social media platform is the platform itself. 

A website does not have this problem. The business owns and controls 100% of the website content. Entrepreneurship and business is about challenging the status quo and making change happen. A website can share a business's message without censorship or playing by another entity's rules.

Credibility and trust-building

Many people will use Google to find information about a business before anything else. An online presence is almost an expectation for a business these days. It presents an opportunity to introduce oneself to potential customers and gain their trust.

According to a study by Verisign, 84% of consumers believe that small businesses with a website are more credible than those without. That means that without a website, a business risks losing credibility and trust with potential customers.

Marketing and customer engagement

Building trust with anyone requires communication. Communication is a two-way street. It requires the business to talk to its customers and allow them to respond. A website facilitates both of these things.

Through a website, a business can tell its story and provide its product information. It can market itself however it wants. The crucial thing is that it also presents an opportunity for customers and users to respond to its messaging. It could be blog post comments, a contact form, or even measuring engagement on a marketing campaign. A website helps enrol more customers in a business and build a more trusting relationship. The more customers trust a business, the more likely they will buy from it.

Sales and revenue generation

Once customers enrol and trust a business, they will buy from it. Making sales through a website is a huge advantage. It offers a streamlined sales process without outsourcing and renting space on external platforms like Amazon, Etsy or eBay. 

There are many ways to sell through a website. It doesn't have to be the standard 'Add to Cart' and checkout process. It can be custom-built to fit that business's style. When I built Paul Cooney's real estate website, we created a process where people register their interest in a property through a form. Then, he contacts them directly to make the sale.

So, are websites valuable to all businesses?

When used with intention, a website is a powerful tool. A website can be custom-built to fit with a business and its strategies. A website can also be a drain on resources. Deciding whether a website is a valuable investment is the choice of that business. It depends on the business's circumstances and strategies.

The features and benefits of a website are universal. It comes down to aligning the features to its goals. Once aligned, it can implement the strategies and take advantage of the benefits. For instance, a business that wants to further its reach through its website can focus on SEO to help it rank higher in search engines.

I know many people who have a website but do not use it with intentionality. If you want to align your website with your business goals, contact me to discuss how to make your website work for your business.