The best way to convince change-resistant small and medium businesses (SMBs) to do things differently is to show them proof. Earlier this week, we ruminated on the fact that most small businesses don't have a website but should. Today we look at the tangible benefits of having a web presence and how IT professionals can lend a helping hand.
Website picture from Shutterstock
Sensis Australia surveyed 1000 SMBs to find out just how they are using the internet to improve their business. Around 56 per cent of companies surveyed have a website and 61 per cent of them said it has increased business effectiveness. Breaking that down further, 43 per cent saw increased customer awareness and 13 per cent experienced increased sales or orders.
Having a website is definitely a start when it comes to SMBs taking advantage of the internet but there are other considerations as well. For one, Google recently changed its search algorithm which favours websites that are mobile friendly. Unfortunately, according to the Sensis research, only 35 per cent of SMBs have optimised their websites for mobile devices and only a small portion of those that haven’t are planning to (28 per cent).
We know there are many SMB owners out there who are not particularly tech savvy or still think it's a massive headache to create or manage a website, let alone making it mobile-friendly for Google search purposes. This is where there is a lot of opportunity for the IT folks out there with the know-how in this area.
On average, medium businesses spend $7500 on websites while small businesses spend about $2200, so there's money to be made here.
Why not offer up your services to some of the local SMBs that have yet to start their own websites? If you're an independent IT technician and are already working with SMBs, the next time you visit them for a job, you can sell them the benefits of a website and offer to help them create or manage their page for a nominated fee. If they already have a website, you can help them optimise it for mobile devices.
Not only will you be making life easier for your customers, earning a bit of extra cash on the side isn't bad either.