Setting Up Your Virtual Storefront: Why You NEED to Have a Website in 2012

February 5th, 2012No Comments »

Setting Up Your Virtual Storefront: Why You NEED to Have a Website in 2012Everybody knows that it”s vital these days for a business to have a website. Developing a strong online presence is important for any type of business or enterprise in any industry. Despite this, it”s surprising to find out that a lot of small businesses still haven”t made the leap to the online world. It”s actually estimated that as many as 40% of small businesses are operating without a website.

The truth is, no matter what your market niche may be, a website offers a valuable window for new customers. It”s not enough to just set up a social media profile, such as a Facebook fan page, and call it quits. As we edge further into 2012, it”s more vital than ever that you build a virtual storefront for your business.

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Of course, simply setting up a website isn”t the end of the road either. Even among the businesses that do have a website, there are plenty of people who haven”t set it up to optimize their online endeavors. What I mean is, you may have a website already, but if you haven”t engaged in the right type of promotion you”re probably looking at meager traffic statistics. The goal behind setting up a website in the first place is that it will ideally become a powerful inbound marketing opportunity for you business.

A quick look at the internet in 2012 shows it to be much different than the way it was in 2003 or 2004. Back then, just having a website was sometimes all you needed. These days, the success of a company website depends on its surrounding network of connections. You need to make use of search algorithms, strong blogging techniques, engaging content and social media interaction in order to bring your website to the largest possible audience.

The reason the online arena has changed so drastically is because the behavior of the buyers has changed. Most customers now want to have the freedom to choose – they need to choose how, when, and where they make a purchase, all without a pushy salesperson badgering them to get on with it. This shift in psychology basically means that a customer wants to be given information during their online experience, not have it shoved down their throats. It”s a self-service community.

Interactive content – blog posts, social media, podcasts – now make up the majority of all online sales, showing that inbound marketing is on the rise while outbound sales – direct mailers, telemarketing – are on the decline both in terms of efficiency and effectiveness. The bottom line is that a virtual storefront set up for inbound marketing is cheaper, easier, and more cost effective than any of the sales gimmicks that used to be so popular. Your website will form the front line for leads, sales, and increased conversions.

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