Every business should have a website. It doesn't matter if you are a large corporation or a small mom and pop shop. A website provides you with the ability to reach customers far beyond your local boundaries.
As a small business owner myself, I have found that most of my customers come from areas far beyond my local surroundings. I have customers from right here in the East and from way out West. Without a website I could not have accomplished that.
When considering the type of website you will have, keep the following in mind:
- Hosting - I would stay away from free hosting sites. You've heard the old saying, "you get what you pay for." Most free hosting sites only offer you limited bandwidth and their uptime of your website is not adequate. Your website's uptime needs to be at least 98% of the time. You lose potential customers if your website can not be accessed.
- Necessary pages of your website include: Privacy page, Terms and Conditions page, Shipping & Returns page, Links page, About Us page, Contact Us page, FAQ (frequently asked questions) page
- Consider your colors. While you may like certain colors, your potential customers may be turned off by them. Do your research based on the type of products you are selling. See what your competitors are doing and if you see a common thread. If everybody else is doing something, there must be success in that area.
- Your website should embody a part of your personality. Give your website personality by designing with a little flair based on who you are. Of course, keep it professional