Investing in a powerful marketing tool
Think about the last time you heard about a product or service that piqued your interest. How did you satisfy your newfound curiosity? For the majority of consumers, the answer is so ingrained within their day-to-day habits that they may not even register it as a conscious decision: You visit their website.
Your Most Influential Branding Asset
Today, websites not only represent one of the most important advertising mediums, but one of the most important assets for a business in terms of developing and leveraging your brand. As a uniquely dynamic platform, a website allows you to engage an audience in ways traditional mediums cannot. In effect, a website embodies the overall brand experience, as it’s the most in-depth connection your customer can have with your product or service.
In September 2015, leading consumer researcher Nielsen, ranked branded websites as the second-most-trusted advertising format, behind only recommendations from friends and family. Research has also shown that users make judgments about a site in terms of its content’s value, relevance and overall brand trustworthiness within 50 milliseconds of landing on your site.
Your Hardest Working Employee
In addition to being a marketing complement, a well-designed website represents a key new member of your team: a team member that can help across multiple departments - administration, marketing and customer service; a team member that can generate qualified leads, build brand awareness, facilitate e-commerce transactions, create brand loyalty and increase customer retention; a team member that can (and should) be your greatest sales person.
Web development should therefore be approached in a similar way to the hiring of a new member of your team. You can hire an inexperienced, inexpensive employee with little understanding of the intricacies of your business and no guarantee they’ll be able to deliver, or you can invest in a highly-trained, experienced professional with impressive and uniquely relevant credentials who can generate ROI for your business. Regardless of your hiring policies, the reality is that you can’t hire a employee for minimum wage and expect them to generate business and build your brand 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.
Your Advertising Hub
Your online presence is the centrepiece of an effective marketing strategy, one that unifies physical and digital consumer interactions. For your customers, all roads lead to your website. As such, developing a site shouldn’t be viewed as a cost, but as an investment in an asset that can increase revenue and potentially lower expenditure in other areas of advertising and staff.
Understandably, when it comes time to update your website, it can be difficult to make a choice between a $7,000 quote from a web designer and a $30,000 quote from a marketing agency, seemingly for the same site. But when it comes to an online presence, you get what you pay for.
A $7,000 investment will give you a site that provides limited, standardized functionality and maybe a pretty face. A $30,000 investment gives you a powerful advertising tool, an essential and influential branding asset, as well as the most productive and hardworking employee money can buy. All designed and custom-built to deliver on your unique brand strategy, customer experience and long-term goals.