Websites aren’t dead, and why they remain an important tool for business marketing—especially for SMBs

Do you remember some of the first websites in the early to mid-90s? The good news is websites have come a long way in terms of look, feel and functionality. And while social media now provides the opportunity for businesses to push information out to audiences in new ways, websites remain a foundational marketing element.
For small- and medium-size businesses (SMBs), such as restaurants, retail stores, banks, gyms or other service providers, having a website with basic, but important information like product details, location, hours of operation and contact information is essential as customers are increasingly looking for information on-the-go.
Still, nearly 50 percent of small businesses don’t even have a website, let alone one optimized for mobile. And with Google saying that more than half of searches are performed on mobile devices, not having a website, especially one that is mobilefriendly, can mean the difference between a customer finding your business or going to the competition.

So why is it that so many businesses still don’t have a simple website? Business owners of all sizes typically point to a few challenge areas:

  •  They think there isn’t enough content readily available to put a website together
  •  They think building a website is a huge time commitment
  •  They don’t have the staff or resources to keep the website updated

Now there are many vendors and tools available to help businesses purchase a domain, set up a few simple pages and publish the site. But while there are many options available to help the novice website builder set up a site, some of these third-party website building tools are overkill and can be complex to manage. These are great for individuals with website or coding experience, but just add more noise for the business owner trying to build a few pages with basic information.
At Vivial, we’ve always been about making the complex simple and streamlining marketing functions so business owners can focus on running their business. Our approach to website support is no different—remove the intimidation factor and confusion by providing tools and support to help businesses of all sizes create, launch and maintain a website that’s appropriate for them and provides the foundation for engaging with customers.
However, the most challenging part of building a website is to know where to start. First, it is important to coordinate key marketing and advertising efforts on the website to support overall business goals, and then determine how the website will function. For example, when someone visits the website, what do you want them to do? Make a purchase? Call or contact you? Share information with friends? All of these factors will determine the type of content to inform and engage viewers.
We believe that it is often easier to customize and edit existing content than begin from scratch, so we help customers create content that not only serves as the framework for the website but provides rich, accurate and fresh information that is relevant to their customers.
Although there are new technologies and tools to connect with customers every day, in our digital age the importance of a simple website can’t be ignored. Vivial is excited to get to work with businesses of all sizes to make sure they have a website that helps them make meaningful connections with the customers they serve. To learn more, visit
www.vivial.net 

Article by:
Jim Continenza
Chairman and CEO, Vivial | Ad tech innovator

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