There are some shocking statistics in new research from The MYOB Business Monitor regarding small businesses in Australia.
The research indicates that a fifth of small businesses don’t know how to use the web for their business. Around two thirds of Australian businesses (65%) don’t have a website.
The MYOB Business Monitor had some good news for those businesses with a website: 30% reported their revenue had increased in the past 12 months, compared with 23% of businesses without a website.
What should you do if you don't have a website?
Build one...now! Its cheap and its not technically hard. Get some advice on how to do this. Go online and starting researching in Google...If you want an excellent reference click on this link. http://www.hubspot.com/website-redesign-kit/. The key point to remember is that a website is NOT just an online brochure, done properly its a lead generation engine for you. Good websites make you money...just ask your competitiors who are already online!
What should you do if you already have a website but is not working well?
Web design has come a long way in a short time. Websites started out simply as online brochures in most cases, but advances in technology and innovation together with a decade or more of experience has allowed smart small businesses to really start taking advantage of the internet to drive down marketing costs, punch well above their weight and develop real business leads from their sites.
Inbound marketing (using your website to get you found online, developing and nurturing visitors to your site so they become real leads and finally the ability to analyse simply whats really working and what isn't) is exploding. If you want to read more about this click on this free whitepaper on the inbound marketing revolution.
Some of the other key insights from this study also have some significant implcations for your businesses:
- Businesses established for more than 10 years are less likely to have a website (25%) than maturing (32%) or new (36%) businesses.
Your younger, more nimble, competitors are getting the jump on you. You need to worry about their ability to compete for clients more effectively and more cheaply than you can.
- Over half (57%) of business owners agree with the statement ‘The Internet is a critical channel for marketing and promoting our business’.
- Nearly half (44%) of businesses agree that they would sell more and get more work if they used the internet better for marketing.
So why, oh why do 65% of businesses not have a website at all? The answer most probably lies in simply not knowing where or how to start the process and being able to trust a good agency that really understands the world of the SME...and this, to be fair, is valid concern. Too many agencies are also wedded to the bloated fees they have got used to charging. SMBs need to look for agencies that understand the unique challenges and operating environments that SMBs face.
I have written a separate blog on the Top 5 tough questions you should ask any prospective agency, who you are thinking of working with.