Unfortunately, COVID-19 has fundamentally changed our daily lives. The epidemic has been with us for a year and we still don’t see the end.
However, we entrepreneurs have also learned from the coronavirus: it is not enough to just be present offline.
Why launch a website now, during an epidemic?
Before we delve deeper into the transformation caused by the coronavirus epidemic, let’s look back a bit to get a better idea of the relationships and the pace of development.
In recent decades, the world has undergone unprecedented development. Just think of us spinning phone books in the 90s and calling our friends from a landline phone.
As mobiles became more and more popular, these things that were then commonplace then completely disappeared from everyday life.
After that, mobile phones started to get smarter since 2008, and then 7-8 years later, almost everyone used only smartphones. Simple, push-button devices have disappeared almost without a trace.
And with smartphones, trade in the general sense has also begun to transform. Today, we’re there that if someone has a problem, or is just looking for a patisserie, hairdresser, they just poke them into their phone and go there.
It’s not hard to see that offline companies were at a disadvantage to those who had a website long before the epidemic. They were much easier to spot. (Of course, this is no wonder, as 60% of people are already searching for the places they want to get on their mobile phones. Invisible to everyone else.)
Of course, many people think that it’s just young people: though the 30-40, but even the 50s, prefer to use Google Maps, or just choose a restaurant based on Google ratings.
This gap has only been exacerbated by the coronavirus epidemic starting in 2020. The world is virtually closed, people can’t get in touch physically, and who can’t solve it to take their business online – they can practically pull off the blinds or be forced to make a living from a very minimal amount.
The coronavirus thus quasi-accelerated what was to happen sooner or later 21. in the life of the twentieth century: digitalisation.
Coronavirus and websites
Unfortunately, anyone who hadn’t posed online before the epidemic suddenly didn’t even know where to get his head. Overnight, he had to find a solution on how to continue his service without having to contact his client or guest.
Restaurants and confectioneries have switched to delivery, and service providers such as law firms can provide online advice and a significant part of the paperwork digitally.
However, businesses and workshops related to the beauty industry are already having a much harder time. In their case, one thing can and should be prepared for: to be present online before the opening.
But why is an online presence important for an SME or even a sole proprietor?
It’s not hard to explain why it’s worth starting a website because of the epidemic: in many cases, it’s just the only way to keep our business afloat and survive.
However, we need to see much further than the COVID epidemic now: the key to our long-term, profitable operation is to prepare our business for an online presence. Although the coronavirus has almost only a negative side, it is still worth looking at the other half of the coin: we have been given time to plan, outline perspectives, and implement online solutions.
Before you start a website, ask yourself the following questions:
- How can / can I digitize my service?
- How will the website fit into my business strategy?
- What are my long-term goals with the website? (Acquiring more customers, starting education, brand awareness, expansion, etc.)
- Will I have time to deal with the website or do I have to entrust it to someone else?
Once you have clarified these in yourself, launching the website is just a step away.
To give you a better idea of the specific benefits of having an online presence, we’ve put together a bouquet for you.
One according to an American survey (a lot of overseas research is also true for domestic relations, only the sample is smaller):
- businesses that are also online have earned twice as much revenue per employee as offline stores only
- those who digitized their company achieved an average 4x increase in revenue (during the covid-free period, of course)
- and three times more likely to create new jobs.
- People spend an average of 20-25 hours a week online (minimum) and can mobilize for up to 5-6 hours. If you’re also present online, you’re much more likely to find your (prospective) customer.
- 90% of people search online for a solution to their problem, be it products or services.
- A lot of people judge a company or enterprise (this is especially true for smaller SMEs) based on the design of their website.
- Last but not least, a well-designed, customer-friendly website that answers consumer, client questions and is constantly updated with content can dominate search engines, resulting in explosive results.
After all, you may have only two questions left, one of which is:
What is the option to start a website?
The one solution to rent the website. The advantages and disadvantages of this have already been explained in our relevant article.
Some of these benefits, without claiming completeness:
- You get a ready-made system, and the admin interface is usually easy to navigate
- No need to worry about maintenance or programming
- And if you need help, there is always customer service, that is, support.
Disadvantages are that:
- It is a fixed cost that you (usually) have to pay monthly
- Less customizable, more template-like
- This is why you may come across a website with a very similar structure.
THE another solution that you ask professional programmers to create the website based on your needs.
The advantages of this are:
- Professionals create the website
- You can fully customize the website
- If you need help, you can turn to them
- In many cases, they have a unique admin interface that can be difficult to see as a layman
- There are a lot of brokers in the business
- We have heard many times that as an incompetent one does not dare to reach into the system, but we have to wait too long for the programmer.
Not to mention that custom development can be terribly costly – and in many cases isn’t even needed.
Third solution it can be when one puts one’s website together if one feels an affinity for it.
- There are plenty of tutorials available on YouTube
- There are open source CMSs (content management systems) that anyone can freely edit
- There are free solutions like WordPress.
- A lot of time while one learns
- In unskilled hands, the system can easily crash and there is no one to ask for help
- The website may not look the way you envisioned.
However, there is one fourth option also, namely, when one buys a ready-made website.
What does WebsitExpo offer?
Many people are afraid of this possibility, as unfortunately it is a common misconception that the website will not be unique.
WebsitExpo is actually an online website marketplace where you can buy ready-made, custom-developed websites. It is important that we do not use templates and all websites we only sell it once . So it can’t happen that your website “faces you” while you’re surfing the net.
We developed the concept because we have seen and experienced that businesses need an easily accessible but unique alternative. On the one hand, with all this so far we made it faster that the contractor has access to his own website, on the other hand, cheaply – for a fraction of development prices.
How much does it cost?
Our cheapest custom website is currently € 75 and the most expensive is € 225. We try to cover as many market segments as possible so that every entrepreneur, from the beauty industry to the gastronomy, can find the site that suits them best.