1. Be Open For Business 24 Hours a Day
Your business is open to the world 24 hours a day, 7days a week with no labor costs to watch it. An online store never closes. And a website faces no time zone barriers.

2. Reach New Markets With a Global Audience
Internet is the most cost effective way to trade nationally and internationally. A website will broaden your base of customers, members, distributors or suppliers. You can generate more and more clients for your business without doing additional marketing. Today, more and more customers are making purchases through the Internet. Why should you limit your business to your immediate locale when the whole world may be your potential market? Thanks to the Internet, it is as easy to sell halfway across the world as it is to sell across the street.

3. Nerve Center for the Global Economy
The Internet has become the nerve center for the global economy. Many world leaders are realizing that those organizations will thrive in this global Internet economy who will grasp its importance before their competitors do. A well-designed website is not only an Internet identity for your organization, it is an essential part of the success and future of your company in the 21st Century.

4. Present a Professional and Credible Image
Your organization must make the leap into the 21st century if it is to be perceived as professional in today’s marketplace. Today, customers, employees, and suppliers expect to be able to find and communicate with a business online. It is very much like being listed in the Yellow Pages, if you do not have a listing, potential customers will not be able to find you and trust you? Organizations that still do not have a Web presence are inadvertently making a statement about their ability to embrace technology and adapt to change in today’s dynamic environment. For a small business, a well-designed website is a great way of creating credibility and looking bigger than you actually are. You can look like one of the big corporations at a very small cost. When one compares the cost of establishing a website to what it costs to promote a business on the traditional media (newspaper, radio, television), it is evident that a website is the cheapest form of marketing ever created.

5. Improved Customer Service
You can provide 24 hours customer services without hiring any additional employees. Your customers are better served when they can access information about your product or services immediately via your website rather than waiting for a mailed brochure or a return telephone call. In today’s fast-paced market, how quickly and conveniently customers can access the information or purchase the product is frequently the factor that determines who will win the sale. Provide answers to frequently asked questions on your website. Information requests can be processed immediately via online forms and autoresponders whether someone is in the office or not.

6. Save Money on Printing and Distribution Costs
A website is your online brochure or catalog that can be changed or updated at anytime at a much cheaper and faster rate than print material. It saves you money on printing and distribution costs.

7. Create A Product Or Service Showcase
Provide photos and detailed descriptions of your products or services. Explain why your products or services are superior to your competitors. Show them how your products or services can help them in their personal or professional lives.

8. Automation, Productivity, and Profitability
Through Internet automation you can increase productivity and profitability. Online automation can reduce costs for advertising, sales personnel, and other support staff. A website increases your company’s productivity because less time is spent explaining product or service details to customers since such information would be available 24 hours a day on your website. A website saves costs by allowing users to download invoices, proposals, and other important documents. Your website can also allow the customers, employees, and suppliers to have their email address added to your mailing list. Sending an email to your entire email list can be done at virtually no cost.

9. Sell Your Products and Services Online
Selling through your website is much cheaper and a great way to supplement your offline business. Providing secure online ordering is very affordable today. That explains why the worldwide online commerce has reached $6.8 trillion by 2004.

10. Stability
You may move your place of business, change your phone number, or even change your hours, but your website address never changes, and your website is always open.

11. Your Own Internet Identity
Your own domain name (www.yourcompany.com) establishes a strong online brand identity, and allows you to set up email addresses specific to your own company. Today, email is the most common way to communicate efficiently and professionally with the rest of the world.

12. Promote Your Services
Lawyers, doctors, financial consultants, entertainers, realtors and all service oriented businesses should take advantage of the massive reach of the Internet. Millions of users are logging on to the Web to compare various specialists and practitioners before they purchase a specialized service.

13. Customer Feedback
You can gather information about your existing and potential customers by using online forms and surveys. Provide a feedback form to make it easy for your customers to send their input. Conduct surveys to find out how you can improve your products and services. Your site statistics can also help you understand how your visitors and customers use your site.

14. Worldwide Exposure
There are numerous ways you can promote your website to enhance prominence, drive targeted traffic, and get worldwide exposure for your business. You can register your site with various search engines and directories that reach more than 800 million Internet users around the world. Most of the search engines and directories allow free registration of websites. Leverage the massive reach of the Internet and the precision targeting of the search engines and directories. You can send press releases to news media about your website that features unique aspects of your organization. You can also promote your site through free banner advertising on various link exchange networks.

15. Many Money From Your Site
You can also earn revenue for sales, leads, and traffic driven from merchant links and ads placed on your site. Take advantage of free access to various affiliate networks on the Internet.

16. Great Recruiting Tool
You can post job opportunities with your company on your website. Your website is a great recruiting tool for building your business.

17. Transfer Information to Branches and Affiliates
Transfer of documents through your website is cheaper and faster than by UPS, FedEx, etc. You can password protect your files if security is needed.

18. Viral Marketing Without a Marketing Cost
You can have your satisfied customers refer you to their friends and relatives through an online form on your website.

19. Improve Your Advertising Effectiveness
Your website address on all of your promotions will give your company a cutting edge corporate image and it will encourage the viewers to check your site for additional information. The addition of your website address on your ad increases your exposure without adding any cost.

20. Educate Your Customers
Your website can offer free advice about your services and products including ideas and suggestions for maximizing the benefit of your products.

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Article by: Global Commerce & Communications Inc.