The Benefits of an Effective Website
A survey conducted by eMarketer highlighted the benefits of an effectively constructed website to build firm credibility and extend marketing reach for smaller businesses. The survey found that most small- and medium-sized businesses with a website were taking advantage of both e-mail marketing and search engine optimization. The crux of the survey found that 78% of businesses reported a competitive advantage and stronger economic footing directly attributed to their websites and 76% reported leads that came directly from their site.1 This is even more evident with the rapidly rising use of the web to both interact and investigate across a broad range of target audiences.
The majority of small businesses (53%) build sites to establish credibility and extend brand, yet the sites can be used for a wide range of communications tools that directly link to customer bases. The effectiveness of sites can be evaluated by multiple factors, including:
- Customer and prospect comments.
- Site activity, traffic, and visitors.
- Sales leads and online sales.
- Increased efficiencies and internal process enhancement.
Within the investment community, the right web-based branding strategies are often overlooked and companies can enhance their web presence as well as bolstering their brand with a well-constructed website. It is also important to create clear and consistent messaging and design across both print and web materials. Research firm Forrester recently examined some of the industry’s largest firms and found that 75% of companies failed to support, or even contradicted the brand positioning presented across other channels.2
Companies of all sizes need to closely examine their web and branding strategies to better communicate the essence of their business to their client base. Whether the goal is to post timely market information and performance or simply extend brand, using the right tools and strategies in web development will allow companies to reach and exceed those goals. The right online experience will establish credibility and help secure a long-term customer relationship.
1. Web Sites Work, eMarketer, 10-7-05
2. Forrester Research