A website allows you to showcase your products for everyone to see. You can explain the benefits, compare it with other products, or show testimonials of happy customers that already bought the product.
It is hard to showcase services in a store, or office. The web allows you to introduce the service, the professionals providing the service, and how several services can complement each other.
People buy from people. People support organizations and causes that they believe in. A website is a fantastic tool to promote an organization and build trust - that is, if you do it right. A well-developed website can convey trust and credibility, encouraging people to buy from you or support you.
Whether you are a professional looking for a job, or an expert in your industry: you can show that to the whole world by having a comprehensive website. The use of an associated email address also increases perceived professionalism: a company email address establishes you as a real player.
Political campaigns are now all over the web. A website can be a powerful way to promote your ideas, and build a following of like-minded people. Or you can just write online journals ("blog's") to express your thoughts and concerns.
Have a fundraising event? Want to promote your business with seminars, workshops or a trade show? You will increase awareness when you create a website for the event. Show dates, programs, prices and driving directions - to name but a few features that will be greatly appreciated by your target audience.
Want to take it a step further? You may even want to consider selling tickets for your events on a website. Shorter line-ups, less expenses: it sounds like a good idea.
Whether "selling your organization" is a figure of speech or a true selling effort, a website can be considered a very valuable asset to your organization.
A website can be a great tool to not only promote, but also actually sell your services. You can automate many repetitive tasks, such as registration, billing, collecting and much more. Whether you are selling phone services or speaking engagements: you can effectively do it with a website.
A few years ago, after all the dot-boms, people lost faith in e-commerce. Now e-commerce is booming. Gift moments like Christmas and Valentine's Day show record sales numbers, and giants like Amazon are starting to make money. Offering a great user-experience and minding usability is the key to success.
By integrating systems and automating certain tasks you may be able to actually save costs. For instance, by integrating your e-commerce website into your inventory and accounting systems. Build extranets to connect with suppliers and clients alike. You can provide downloadable documents on a website rather than mailing them out. The opportunities are endless.
Want to be perceived as a leader? Want people talking about you, or provide a platform for people to share ideas and ideologies? A website, especially with a forum or bulletin board, can be a great help in building an online community. It may even be the cement that keeps an offline community together, because of its empowering character and 24/7 availability.
You can use your site to share pictures, sound bites, or PowerPoint presentations. A website is a great tool to exchange multi-media.
This may not be of great value to you (it may even be a burden.), but to your customers it is very empowering and important. The Internet puts the web browser in control - and if you are not there, you will be more and more passed over in favour of an online competitor.
Answering the same questions over and over again can be a great waste of company time. A carefully crafted list of Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ's), posted on a website, can reduce the stream of repetitive questions so your Customer Support department can actually start supporting customers, and your Sales Department can really devote their time to selling!
Branding is a way to differentiate your product, service or company from its competition, and create loyalty. The content of a website, its style and tools such as newsletters allow you to differentiate yourself in many ways, make the visitor feel good about you, and build loyalty. if you do not do this, a competitor may use his website to snatch not only your prospective sales, but also their loyalty away from you!
More and more people use locally defined keywords on search engines, which indicates that they use the Internet do find local information. "Used cars Toronto" or "Guelph real estate" are obvious, but mentioning a website in a local ad may do wonders in terms of converting a reader into a customer.
A website is one of the easiest tools to expand your exposure into a wider geographical area. Want to move your business from just Fergus into the whole of Ontario? A website allows you to do that.
Political campaigns are just one example where website's are being used to service a National audience. Offering a Nationally specific version of your product, such as Tylenol.ca, is another one. This allows you to offer information about specific national tax and delivery charges, or appeal to National pride.
If your target audience is "the world" then you really need a website. But you knew that already, didn't you?