The coronavirus pandemic changed how we do everything in 2020. Work, learn, entertain ourselves, buy food, shop. People spent more and more of their lives online this past year.
If your business wasn’t ready to handle those changes with a good website, or you weren’t online at all, you probably found yourself scrambling to adjust when the pandemic hit. Here are just a few of the reasons why this year has made it clear that we all need better websites.
Why 2020 Showed Us We Need Better Websites
1 | Lockdowns kept us indoors
Quarantine. Stay-at-home orders. Shelter-in-place restrictions. All around the world, lockdowns kept people at home to try and prevent the spread of the coronavirus in 2020. In fact, Collins Dictionary declared “lockdown” the word of the year.
What did lockdowns mean for your business? If you ran a brick-and-mortar store, a space at your local farmer’s market, or set up shop at festivals and big public events, that all changed for your business in 2020.
You might’ve had to take your business fully online. And if you didn’t have a solid website that met your needs, I’m betting it was tougher than expected. This year, we learned that anything can happen, and having a good website is important no matter what products or services you offer.Here are 4 Lessons 2020 taught us about the importance of having a website!Click To Tweet
2 | Online shopping became more popular
So, we realized that websites are essential when you’re an entrepreneur, in case quarantine forces everyone to stay home. But what exactly did we learn about our websites?
If you’re a product-based business, you might’ve realized that you need a reliable site that showed off your items and met your customers’ needs. A site that allowed shoppers to search for specific items, and allowed you to display all the details (color, size or dimensions, fabrics or materials) for every product.
Service-based business owners, did you notice that you got decent site traffic, but then most visitors left without booking or buying anything? If your website didn’t clearly explain what you offered and why customers should choose you, they likely left to look for someone else.
Without these features on your website, you probably had to handle a lot of customer service messages in your inbox…or worse, on social media.
Related post: Top 12 Tools You Can Use To Run Your Online Shop
3 | People needed to connect
Online shopping and browsing might’ve increased in 2020, but people were looking for more than just that. People also wanted to stay entertained, learn new things, and connect with other people.
Think about how many people started trying to bake bread, learn a new instrument, or start a garden during quarantine. During the early lockdown months, Netflix got 16 million new signups alone. And Zoom saw massive success when people got together with friends, family, and coworkers through video chat.
I’m not saying you have to provide a revolutionary service or start a viral challenge on social media! But you can attract and retain customers by offering them ways to learn, connect, or be entertained when they visit your website.
Do you have a blog that answers your customers’ most asked questions? How about product tutorials? In-depth demos or free resources? All of these provide value to your customers.
You don’t have to limit yourself to writing, either. If you prefer other ways of expressing yourself, why not create YouTube videos or TikTok videos to teach, connect, and entertain your audience? You can always link or embed social media on your website.You can attract customers by offering them ways to learn, connect, or be entertained when they visit your website. Start a blog, offer tutorials and demos, or provide free resources to keep them around.Click To Tweet
4 | Businesses needed to build trust
Without in-person customer service and sales, it’s up to your website to show off your business as trustworthy and credible. People rarely buy a product or service without researching a brand first. Over 90% of customers read online reviews before buying!
If you don’t have a website that looks modern and professional, you risk making your business look outdated, untrustworthy, or even worse, a scam. A good website legitimizes your business.
How businesses adjusted their practices in 2020 mattered, too. Think of a brand that pleasantly surprised you when the pandemic made everyone feel at their lowest. Apple’s ads poked fun at the challenges of working from home (while still subtly showcasing their products.)
Compare that to McDonald’s failed ad campaign that promoted social distancing… which didn’t make sense for a brand that kept many locations open and risked their workers’ health. Yikes.
In short, your website is a place for you to build trust between your customers and your brand. To work well, it needs to stay up to date and with the times. Otherwise, you risk getting attention for the wrong reasons.
Related post: 9 Reasons Why You Must have a Website to Build a Successful, Long-Term Business
What we’ve experienced in 2020 is our “new normal,” as everyone calls it. A lot of these changes, like online shopping and spending more time online, aren’t going away any time soon. It’s up to you to stay relevant with a website that meets your customers’ needs.
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