Whenever launching a new business and a new brand, you will come to the same question: “Do I need a website? I mean, it’s 2018 and there is plenty I can do with social media and other platforms. Do I really need to get my brand a website?”. Yes, you do.
Websites are brand ambassadors
Just like stores have displays, brands do too. Think of a website as your brand’s display, the first thing that a customer will see when looking you up. A website is a way for a company to make a solid first impression and to underline their brand attributes. Now some might say that customers look brands up on Facebook before getting to the website. It’s increasingly true – but sooner or later, they do end up on the website.
Every single line of code on a website can be altered, which gives you almost unlimited creative fuel to design and build what you see as the best user experience (UX). This is something you cannot do on social media, where you only have a limited range of action. The UX on Facebook will be more or less the same for all brands. But the effort you put in creating a website that sparks, will make the difference.
Websites trigger engagement
In 2017, a survey conducted by the Local Search Association reported that over 50% of consumers claim they don’t trust a company without a website, while 63% of them use websites to engage with a business. And one would come to think that with the growth of social media use, consumers would simply use websites less. However, data from 2015 to 2016 shows an increase of 3 points. One explanation could be that a well built social media strategy should generate better website traffic.
These numbers show that despite the exponential growth of social media and other media platforms, websites are still one of the primary sources of information and trust for consumers. Take a look at what we did with Junior-Athletes (visuals below).
Eggs and basket
Don’t put all of them in the same, it’s a life rule. In November 2017, a French entertainment company learned this the hard way. Purely Facebook-based, Firerank simply disappeared within minutes when the American giant decided to delete their account all together. Firerank built its legacy with unethical techniques involving growth hacking – a process of rapid expansion through platform and audience manipulation. Although Firerank’s activity was 100% ethical and legal as of their last day, Facebook decided to call it a day and terminate the relationship. The Clermont-Ferrand based business disappeared and although they tried to fight the decision, were not able to come back. Had Firerank ensured a balanced digital presence via other social media platforms and a solid website with high traffic, they might have still been active today.
SEO and SEM
Talented web developers will ensure building a website that will contribute to the overall marketing strategy of the firm. When properly coded and managed, a website will deliver natural search results and drive high quality traffic to you. Search Engine Optimization and Marketing (SEO and SEM) should no longer be optional but should be considered a must. A well-built and thoroughly coded website will help you increase visibility and get enough exposure to differentiate yourself from your direct competitors.
So let’s wrap things up. Do websites matter in 2018? If you are looking to build an engaging display that will help you tell the story of your brand while differentiating your business from competition in a sustainable way, then yes. A powerful and thoroughly built website is today an essential part of any company.