Should Small Businesses have a web presence?
In one word, yes! The internet is the most effective marketing tools in existance nowadays, have the capability of reaching far more people than any leaflet drop or advertisement in the local paper ever will.
Should you produce your own website?
It all depends on your skills, if you have the ability to produce a site that looks good, then go ahead, it will save you money and will work wonders as a marketing tool. However if your skills are limited or non-existant then we'd say no. Why? No, not because we want your money (although we don't mind if you want to give it to us...), because if your site doesn't have a professional look to it, then it is going to reflect badly on your company's image.
Do you need to spend lots of money?
It really depends on the size of your website, if you're looking simply get a presence on the internet, then you can easily get something for around £250 if you take the time to look, if you're really getting into the idea of being online and effectively having your shop exist in cyberspace you're going to be looking at more money, however even then, there are many self-build options such as Ekmpowershop.
What content do you need?
This all depends on what you want from being online, if you want to sell online, have your products online is going to be very useful! If you're just looking to get your company online, then there are TWO elements that we believe are imperative:
Information about your company
How to contact you
Without these two no-one is going to know who or what you are, with the former being your chance to sell yourself. Remember when people look at websites, if its well designed they won't know if they're dealing with a multi-national company or a one person organisation, this is your chance to play alongside the big boys!!
What to do now?
So you're convinced a website is the way to go? Excellent, this can only be of benefit to you! Now you've got to find a designer (there's one right here!!!), things to keep in mind when looking is what kind of style are you looking for, find some websites that you like then find some designers and see if they can produce something along that line! If they can, you're on the way to bringing into being what can be one of your best employees!!