According to the ONS, 87.9% of adults in the UK use the internet – the equivalent to 45.9 million internet users. Of those 45.9 million, 95% buy goods via internet retailers. These statistics alone should demonstrate how crucial it is to have a company website. However, for those of you that are still unconvinced, I have listed a few of the dangers of not having a website:
Small and Medium Businesses Lose Out on £1 Billion Every Day
Today’s consumers are more savvy than ever before, and with the internet at their disposal they often browse company websites prior to making purchase decisions. Small and medium sized businesses account for the majority of businesses in the UK and so, in order to not miss out on potential sales they must implement websites.
New research has revealed that not having a website costs UK SMEs billions of pounds in revenue each year. Over 1.98 million small and medium businesses in the UK currently have no website which is costing them a colossal £343 billion every year.
Specifically, the retail industry is losing out on £149 billion each year. According to the report, introducing a company website in a medium sized retail business, with 50-249 employees, could generate an additional £16.9 million in sales each year. This is followed by small businesses (10-49 employees) who could make £2.4 million extra and micro businesses (1-9 employees), who could drive £334,450 more. Retail businesses that have only one self-employed owner could expect to see a £47,353 increase in revenue after implementing a company website.
Lack of Brand Trust
Reports have shown that websites are the second most trusted advertising platform. As previously mentioned, consumers consistently browse the internet and company websites prior to making purchase decisions, but if you do not have a website for internet users to browse you are significantly reducing your chance of converting them into customers. Inevitably, competitors that have established websites will be able to take advantage of your lack of online presence and as such, take away potential customers and revenue from your business whilst building brand trust and loyalty.
Trust is one of the key factors in purchase decisions and a lack of it is therefore a danger to the livelihood of your business. Additionally, by not having a website you minimise your brand awareness.
Less Hours to Sell
Companies that have websites give their customers the freedom to browse and buy goods 24/7, those companies that do not have a website are limited to selling within the hours specified by opening and closing times. Consequently, not having a website means that the accessibility of buying your goods is significantly reduced.
Customers now expect to be able to buy whenever they want, at their easiest convenience, within the comfort of their own home instead of travelling to a physical location. Furthermore, your customers are far more likely to find an alternative product or buy from your competitors if the buying process is quicker and easier than going through you.
Smaller Market Share
Ultimately, all 3 dangers explained above lead to less revenue as a result of a smaller market share. Companies that are not able to generate sales online, build brand trust and do not allow consumers to buy at their own convenience are unquestionably hindering their potential to grow and take control of the market.
Retail companies need to take advantage of the millions of internet users that buy goods via internet retailers. In this day and age, companies can no longer depend on bricks and mortar to generate sales. As consumers become ever more dependent on websites to buy goods, those companies without websites can expect to see a decline in sales and lose considerable market share to their competitors.