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Websites TREMENDOUSLY help increase business for businesses.
I recommend to all business owners to have a website to display/sell your products/services.
Welcome to this forum Risktk666
It really depends of what products you are selling, but it a good thing to have 2 businesses and an e-commerce. The only problem on internet, before you start selling it take times to get your pages indexed on search engines.
3k per month? If you are in a very competitive market, you will need to spend a lot of money in SEO (Search Engines Optimization) or you can do it yourself.
Let me n if I can help you more.
Its a Jewelry business and the cost would be 3k for the creation of the entire website. Anyone know of any good reliable website creators?
3K it is always a risk when you know the work you have to do or the service you need to take to get a maximun exposure on internet.
You will need a website, but you already know that.
Photos of your products
Quality contents (Attractive description to catch the eyes of you potential visitors)
Search Engines Optimization
Articles, Marketing, Press releases if you can afford that, etc...
and the most important: Building a back links compaign
Your lack of business success could be contributed to by the lack of a website.
I don't think so, this is two different things and two different markets
Would you care to expand on this Nat?
I think it is clear enough
There is more to being successful than having a website. Some items do not sell well on the web - pet food, groceries and some big ticket items(like jewelry) have been proven to not do well on the web.
It has been stated in other posts that it is important to have a good marketing plan (I believe both DomainDiva, Luckiest and Mobilemktng have written on this). A good marketing plan takes a lot into consideration, and constructs a plan that takes advantage of more then any one medium to get your message out.
Now, I do believe in having a website and the importance it can play in a business' success. I have and still do freelance for one of the top 10 interactive advertising agencies in the country. 3K is not a lot of money when you start talking about getting great photos, design and build for a site. Understand that you get what you pay for. Functionality is just as important as design, if not more. Anyone can create a website but only a few can design one that really delivers on the promise of the internet. Throwing templates up is the LEAST a business should do, the least.
Now, I know to all the web design firms out there it may seem like I am spitting in your face, I'm not. I just believe that it is hard to standout when you look like everybody else. In marketing, you don't want people thinking they have seen it before. If they think that, they tend to skip over things.
But what do I know? I have only been in advertising for almost 20 years at some of the largest and most successful shops in the country, working on some of the most successful brands in the world. And I'm not trying to sell you anything.
Like I said there is two different things and two different markets.
1) brick and mortar store are different compared to online store
2) brick and mortar customers are not online customers, two different markets
Now jewelry don't do well, I guess it depends of what jewelry you are selling, if is too wast or a large general market it would be very hard and very expensive to promote. I have seeing e-commerce selling Hawaiian jewelry and doing well because they are specialized in this niche and difficult to find on brick and mortar stores beside living in Hawaii where you can find this items everywhere.
My point is be specialized in the market you are, you will have a better chance to sell it online.
I was agreeing with you. I'm was also saying you need some off-line support to drive folks to the website. I believe in a multi-prong approach to marketing.
As for my previous post, I was really responding to all the posts through you. I am still trying to figure out the best way to respond to things. Sometimes there are two or three posts that I want to comment on, so I go to the last post and respond to it thinking everyone will see that I am really talking to everyone.
Sorry for any confusion that may have cost.
That's happened to me, don't worry about this.
I understand that these are two different markets, as well as two different approachs.
What I am saying is that any potential client or customer that utilze's ecommerce might ask you, Do you have a website?
If your response is no, the view on your company can change.
Another Ex: Joe Smith owns a Consulting Company. A client asks for a email sent in regards to a consultation.
Joe sends the email from his Yahoo email Address: email@example.com.................................or
Joe sends an email from his Company's domain email address: firstname.lastname@example.org
Suddenly the abilities and professionalism of this company will change if he has his own domain.
Any guy off the street can get a yahoo email address, at no cost to them.
Only an established company has a Professional Web Presence.
Lack of a website will assist your company to be uncapable in certain types of markets.
Well of course. Are they limiting themselves to only a local market, and closing themselves off from a huge market online?
Of course. Is there value to a name? Yes.
My choice's are this - I go to a company that is known both on the internet and locally, or do I go to a company that is only known locally.
The web presence takes them to a higher level. If needed expansion for there company, lets say they would like to open a retail outlet in another part of the country, they have already established themselves at a national level, so this move will be easier then if the, were only known by the locals.
So now you see the reasoning behind my comment ~ Lack of business success can be contributed by the lack of a web presence.
The markets compliment each other, and can be used to establish your company as more then just a email@example.com type of company.
What is it that you need or want a website to do (or what customers and revenue do you fear you might be missing out on because you don't have one)? A website can achieve several different objectives, and choosing the right developer and solution depends on being clear about what your specific objectives are as a business (and then identifying how a website could enable that overall strategy).
Yes of course you need a website.
Any business without a website could be seen as incapable or unprofessional.
The $3000 dollar quote your recieved seems a little steep to me.
Thanks everyone for all your input. I will hold off a bit longer till I find a reliable abd effective website creator.
No problem. What city are you in? The local advertising club can provide you with a list of contacts locally that you can work with closely. In the meantime, think about what you need and want your site to do. Write all of it down, and have it for whatever person you go with. If you need anymore help with what to look for, questions to ask and how to work with them. I am more than happy to help.
Also, ask the adverting club about photographers. Find a good photographer to shot your product. If they are too expensive, tell them so and ask them if they know of a young/new photographer who is trying to build his/her book that could do a good job. On smaller projects where cost has been an issue, I have done this and gotten great results.
Finally, the company does not have to utilze there web site for ecommerce.
There website, can be used as a "Hometown Brochure".
This will cut costs for the implementation of website, and allow a more professional image.
Site would have hours of operation, address of location, a little about the owners, as well as some "Hometown" marketing techniques.
Outside of the stoor there is a sign "Visit us online @ www.hometown-market.com"
New customers and old, will hold the business a little higher on the scale then they might of before.
Can't you see them circling, honey?
- Jimmy Buffett
Yes it is like this when any business or potential customer puts out on the wire that they "might" need a website.
You will be overwhelmed as the emails and responses come in drones and armies.
Now days a wen site isn't even a question.. it is a must. Even if you are well known in your town as a dependable and well liked place for people to buy jewelry from, it is just as important to entertain the viewer online that may not know much about you.
The web pages today are more powerful that the yellow pages at times. Would you ever tell a company that you think they shouldn't be in the yellow pages?
People not only do most of their shopping online, but now days even if it is a perishable item that you cannot ship, they want to know if you have what they are looking for before coming to your store. They want to know if you have it cheper than the other 10 stores in your town or what kinds of warranties you may offer.
Even if you don't plan to ship items and sell them online in a storefront, you shoudl have a site that displays some of your most valued items. It is a great way to allow your clients to get to know you an dfeel they are comfortable with your product. I know it sounds like a large lump of cash, but it is worth it - 3k is
a great deal if you find the best professionals that can give you the
look and the marketing strategy that you need. It isn't just a website.
In your case getting a web site is just as important as the yellow pages, putting a commercial on TV, or maybe even magazine ads. All in which you would also put your web site address on so people can find out about who you are, and why they should come to you. A great place to showcase an ad or a discount as well. You don't have to offer shipping of merchandise or online sales in order to NEED a web site, although, if you want to sell more think about the gift ideas that you may be able to make available to those persons out there that wih to have something sweet sent to a loved one. If you're not online and your competition is.. then you are just handing those sales away.
Have a great day.
cwgreen09, you wrote that people do most of their shopping online. They don't. Americans did about 6 percent of their shopping on-line in 2006. Only 3.8 percent of all jewelry sold in the U.S. in 2006 was sold on-line.
I've had both a jewelry store chain and two independent jewelers as clients. When they first added "showroom" websites (no on-line sales capabilities), there was no increase in sales. When they added the capability for customers to buy on-line, they each saw their sales increase just a little over 1 percent. That means the store in question here would have to be netting around $300K at present to make the proposed website the complete "no-brainer" that everyone seems to think it is.
I asked the questions I did in my initial post because in order to generate the revenue needed to pay for site development and maintenance, retail businesses have to add at least one marketing tactic that uses the site to capitalize on an opportunity that's currently being missed. I have little doubt that such an opportunity is there, but you can't just throw up a site and hope it pays off -- you have to build it around a specific tactic and target (or all it does it cost the business more money).
Lighthouse, let me rephrase then....
Many people go online to research the items they want to buy and then decide if they want to order online or actually go to the store in which they found the best deal on, while they were online.
Like I said before, would you tell a company not to advertise in the yellow pages? Pretty much the same thing.. in fact, the yellow pages has a web site too.
Over all, many clietns will see the company as non established without a web site. If they have never come to your store before and search online and find what they are seeking at a good cost from your rival, you just handed them your sales.
I mean, we can have a test and let one person walk or drive around town all day looking for what they want while the 2nd person goes online for about an hour and finds the item if you want. Just a thought. If it were me, I'd want people to be able to find me in any and all ways they see fit - the bottom line is ... even if only 6% were buying from me online.. I'd like an extra 6% on sales each month , wouldn't you?
I don't want the extra 6 percent in sales if it adds 8 percent to costs. That was my point -- just "having a website" doesn't automatically increase sales for this type of business. People can say it does, but data says it doesn't. So spending $3,000 (plus monthly hosting and maintenance fees) is not an imperative for every business (for that matter, neither is having a Yellow Pages listing). I'm not saying that either one of those is a bad thing or that risktk666 should not get a website -- only that the site should be developed around a strategy that guarantees it will bring in more revenue than it costs.
I'm not trying to be argumentative, by the way. My job is to advise business owners, and for some small businesses, $3K is a LOT of money -- the owners, their families, and their employees are going to do without things for awhile in order to pay for that website. It's a serious decision.
$3K is not a "great deal" if you're only talking about a "web presence" or a "more professional look." If this were a client of mine, $3K would only be a great deal if it created $5K+ in new sales the first year. Is anybody willing to step up and make that guarantee?
I agree with you on the cost and return . I was only pointing out that they do need a web site.. not really that they need to spend 3k on one. The only way that I could see spending that much money on a site is if it was going to have a large return as well. See - we agree. :)
As far as the upkeep goes.. GoDaddy.com has GREAT deals on Hosting and your actual domain name is cheap to get. in fact for those of you that are ever curious about hosting and more GoDaddy helps by offering tracking and traffic stats so you can keep up with who an how many people have been visitng your site.
I think it is called traffic blazer.
They also help out a great deal with getting you recognized on all of the search engines. It was a great help for me. i didn't know that you had to go to each engine and tell them your URL so they will send a spider to your page to crawl it. Even after that some of the bigger engines like yahoo and google might not recognize your page for around 6 weeks.just a little info for those of you that are getting your first site and doing a lot of the work yourselves. With that kind of help you don't have to pay someone else to do it for you. Every little thing can help, so I think. I got 200 gigs of space ( more than enough space for 50 web sites ) from GoDaddy for just a few hundred dollars.
Of course I am having my site create by my employees since we eventually intend to offer that type of media as a service of ours.
Anyhow - yes... I agree with most of what you are saying.
Let's shake hands. :)
cwgreen09, thanks for taking the time to consider my point and respond. As I said, I wasn't trying to argue, but rather give business owners (and hopefully a few web devs) the overall business decision to consider. Thank you again (shaking hands!).
If your business in online based then website is manditory to achieve your goals.For other Offline business you can have websites it will be an added advantage for your business.The use of the website is you can have latest updates in your websites.you can optimiza your website to get more visitors to your website.we cant say 100 % it will lead to success but it mainly depends upon the effort you take to develop your website.
Thank you for setting us straight on sales on the web.
Your point about 3k being a lot of money for some small businesses is an excellent one. It is one of the main reasons I tend not to work for small business. I believe in them, I think small and middle sized businesses are the backbone of this country. But I also think they are not in the position to take advantage of what a sound marketing and advertising strategy can do for them. That's why I like this forum, it is a place where thoughts and ideas can be exchanged. We can all learn and grow.
I don't think anyone in advertising can or should offer a guarantee on returns - they would be lying. I wish we could but there is no way to honestly say that we can deliver guarantee numbers. And anyone out there saying they can should be avoided. There are way too many variables.
I think we are missing your strategy point. Our research has found that most people are finding or coming to websites after being informed of the website through some off-line source. Most people know what company they are looking for before they get on the web. If this is even remotely true, then the strategy has to be one that creates awareness about the company's offering and the website. Not just the website. You have got to have a way to drive them to your website, SEO is great but what about in the car, at home, in the mall, at the salon or the barber shop? Optimize all of your marketing, make sure it is reaching folks where they are, not where you want them to be, and it says what you need it to say.
Iwrite, yes -- that's it exactly! Thanks.
Please contact directly to my company and we will discuss website for your retail business and ways to make it successful.
First of all we need to define tasks of your website (how it will return money) and ways of promotion (taking into account you budget).
Yes, these days, you must have a web site. Now whether or not you need to spend $3000 on it to start with, I don't know..
As a matter of fact, a friend of mine did a test for his program "how ugly web sites make money" to show how you can make money online and offline with an "ugly web site".
It was his business not mine, I just helped him with the test.
I would be willing to give you the information I have used and have no vested interest as I don't do that myself.
I'm not saying you should not use a professional web site designer. I would just show you what I've done
for little or no money.
Your $3,000 rate seems a bit steep.
Shop around a little, are you looking at an e-commerce site or do you want a brochure style site?
I design the latter - hackworthdesign.com
Nice design work on your site.
Having a website is crucial. There is no doubt about it. Depending on what you want to include on your website you might spend $3,000 but I know quite a few companies that would be able to produce a site with e-commerce tools for around $1,000 (or even less).
A website is not used simply to draw people that are surfing online to you. A website is also used as supplemental information. Let me explain.
I own a video production and advertising company called Tonangi Media (http://www.tonangi.com). Most of my clients purchase 30 second TV ads.
There is only so much that you can tell a customer about your product or service in 30 seconds. Every single customer has placed their website address on their advertisement. This is so customers can go on the web and check out more information about their business.
When credit cards first started to become popular in the late 70s it was not necessary for all businesses to accept them. That has now changed. Very few businesses exist without accepting credit cards simply because this is one of the most popular forms of payment. This is now true for websites. If I saw an advertisement on television, on a bus, or a flyer and the business didn't list their URL I would not consider the business as credible. If I could not quickly "google it" and find out a website address, I wouldn't even consider placing an order - and this sentiment is shared with roughly 1/2 of the United States population.
If cost is your biggest issue you can create a website using tools on GoDaddy like Website Builder, or hundreds of other free or very cheap tools. Without knowing your specific needs it's impossible to tell you what you should budget but irregardless of what you do - in today's market you must have a website.
Video Production and Advertising for Small businesses
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My question to the general public is concerning whether or not to establish a website for my businesses. Currently, I own 2 businesses both of which are in the same industry and are retail. The idea of a website has long been on my mind but I have always been discouraged because of excessive competition. The ideal website is running about 3k. Therefore, I am trying to decide if having a website will be just more trouble or be a fiancial success.