While it may be tempting to go with social media or cheap, build-it-yourself website templates, cutting corners on your website can leave tons of money on the table. Here are the top 10 reasons why you should have your own website ...
You control the content, the presentation, and the feel. You're not beholden to the vagaries of someone else's coding and design decisions or the good-will of commenters on your social media sites.
Complete control over your content means you decide how your content works, what it looks like, and how the experience feels to your website visitors.
Complete control also allows you to manage your copy and SEO for precise keywords and message that maximizes your advantage in organic search.
Social media comes and goes. Website templates and social media platforms become obsolete or prone to security problems as hackers learn to exploit them.
A good web designer will custom-build your website for lean, fast, seo-friendly load times, adjust content as needed, and make sure regular security reviews are conducted to ensure your site is safe and secure for your visitors.
Digital drives product consideration. Your own website will help them on their shopping journey.
Shoppers voraciously consume information about products online. They use your website to get the information they need to make product decisions.
Consumers tend to focus on two channels - online reviews and company websites. According to KPMG’s 2017 study "The Truth About Online Consumers", 55% of global consumers depend on online reviews and 47% of global consumers depend on company websites.
The first action many consumers take after reading reviews is to visit your website.
97% of consumers are using the internet to find businesses.
A recent survey called The Shopper Story by Criteo found nearly half of all omnishoppers* from various countries reported that websites were the "last influence before purchase". The study also found nearly 50% of consumers reported that retail websites are more influential in their purchasing process than word of mouth, search, or social.
Shoppers that started their research on retail sites also displayed higher purchasing intent.
* Omnishoppers are shoppers who use a variety of devices, channels, and platforms to research and buy products.
Depending on reviews and social media alone will get you nowhere.
As stated above, one day a social media platform is in, tomorrow it may be out.
Plus, no matter how many social media reviews you get, your website is still the most important tool in your golf marketing toolkit for generating and ranking for organic search.
If you don't have a website, you will not rank in search, period. And no rankings mean you won’t make Google's Local Pack and Map results.
A well-designed website establishes credibility with consumers.
Site organization, meaningful navigation labels, and a clear call to action lets your users’ know you understand their needs, attitudes, and vocabulary.
An uncluttered visual design is a must. The term "well-designed site" is a constantly shifting standard as design trends change over time. But proper use of white space and clear font faces will ensure your site survives changes in styles and continues to convert site visits to sales.
Color schemes affect the perceived value of your business as well as establish your brand. Colors should complement your type of business and strategically support the tone of the organization.
Make sure you have no typos, broken links, or other mistakes that will damage your credibility and communicate a feeling of carelessness.
Google uses your website to confirm who you are as a business.
Google checks your website to confirm your location, phone number, address and other pertinent information. If Google can't cross-reference this information, the search engine is less sure of who and where you are, which depresses your rankings in local searches.
What you say about who you are and what you offer is extremely important to Google and consumers.
Local listings and social media profiles usually don't give you enough space to properly explain your product or service, share your backstory, or make a good offer. A full website does!
Many features in Google search (like Google Answer Boxes) pull the information in the results from your website.
If you don't have a website you have no chance to appear in search results and customers can't click through to contact you or buy your product.
Your website is a platform you can use to increase shopper confidence by featuring your customer testimonials, feedback, experiences, and more.
While reviews are still trusted by most consumers, on-site testimonials serve to validate those reviews for viewers who may be skeptical of their honesty.
Google My Business allows any user to upload photos and make suggestions for edits to your info. Your own website gives you absolute control over what content appears on your website.
This is especially important for image search rankings and for providing consistent information to Google.
The bottom line is, no matter how popular reviews and local search are, your website is still the best way to get organic rankings, which determine where your website appears and in what position in local search and map results.
A well-designed and optimized website translates directly into getting you the visibility you need to rank well and ... ultimately ... make more sales!