Is Your Website a Main Part of Your Business?

On average, around two thirds of all start-ups will fail within their first year of business. This is a dramatic statistic and could be avoided with better planning and budgeting.

There are sometimes many factors why a business fails but on this page we only focus a few of them - your website and the marketing that surrounds it!

Some business are only as good as their website. Why? Let's say you sell food, clothes or shoes - lots of places sell them and everyone needs them. Chances are, if you buy them in from somewhere there is nothing wrong with the product. This brings us to your shop or premises; do you rely on the passing public to walk in off the street? If you do, you could be waiting a long time.

Time is the scarcest resource and customers may not have time to visit your shop, especially if they are on the way to work or passing in a car. They may look you up on their phone, on a computer at work or in the evening when you are closed. This is a fantastic opportunity to show off your products or services on the web. Another interesting factor to note here is that 70% of consumers who purchase search the web. [1]

Not only is it vital to factor a website into your business plan but also web marketing and realistic costs for these items. Some businesses start with a small budget and find this is much below what is actually needed - an all too common mistake business start-ups make.

For many businesses their shop or office rent is not their largest outgoing, neither is it their product or stock, it is actually their advertising and marketing budget and a large part of this is often their web marketing budget. Businesses often know they need a premises and stock, but they overlook a very important factor - customers!

A large number of businesses allocate around 25% of their budget to online marketing, with some allocating much more. This is often a huge cost that is overlooked by new businesses and should be factored in during the early stages of planning. Failure to do this can be a costly mistake and money ploughed in to premises and stock becomes a slow and gradual loss.

If you are starting in business or have a current one that is failing or looking doubtful, ask customers how many found you on the web. In today's world it is possible to receive more than 70% of your customers through four areas of marketing; your website, Facebook, Twitter and search engine marketing. It is a good idea not to forget offline marketing also plays a part; flyers, direct mail and adverts can also give a business a lift.

For further information on this subject you may wish to read about the Marketing Mix or the four P's, price, product, promotion, and place [2]. There are many versions and there is lots of information available about this on the web.

[1] 70% of Consumers Who Purchase Use Search

[2] The Marketing Mix on Wikipedia

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