The virtual digital world is a huge marketplace with hundreds of thousands of potential customers who are looking for your product or services. With the world becoming predominantly virtual, people today prefer to communicate with a businesses and inquire/purchase/interact with them through their website. Digital marketing transcends traditional mediums by creating multitudes of opportunities at a lesser expense in comparison to print, advertisements, coupons, etc.
Having a virtual presence is crucial to survive in today’s competitive market. Hence, businesses need a website and digital marketing. In this article, we are going to explore 5 reasons why these two things are important.
Why Businesses Need a Website and Digital Marketing – 5 Reasons
1. Everyone is Online
By that, we mean everyone. Right from potential customers to competitors, almost every business and person is online today. People use the internet as a part of their daily lives, spending a greater part of their day reading, researching, buying, playing games, or something else. So there’s a very high possibility that a vast pool of potential customers are looking for your services or products right now, and going to your competitors’ websites. Having a web presence has become second nature, so much that most people don’t even interact with a new business unless they see it online first.
The difference between targeting people directly and virtually is that it limits the scope for publicity. You cannot print ads in all newspapers or magazines across the world. You cannot have an outlet or office in all countries in the world. Hence, if you target people using traditional methods, you won’t be able to tap into anything beyond the local market. Publicity will be limited to word of mouth. On the contrary, if you have a website and use digital marketing to target customers, there are millions of people who can see you and communicate with you. Publicity on the internet in the form or reviews and ratings can get you many more customers than traditional marketing ever can.
2. Niche Marketing using Thousands of Virtual Options
A major highlight of digital marketing is that it targets a niche market. This means that it targets people who are looking for products or services that you offer, and hence to whom advertisements related to your business will be relevant.Think of it like this. Print media is expensive, we all know that. Yet, you go ahead and put your ad in the local newspapers and some magazines anyway. How many people buy the newspaper and magazine? Possibly thousands. How many of them actually bother to read the advertisements printed in there? A few. And out of the ones that do read it, how many are actually looking for your product and service? Even fewer. So what does that say about the chances of someone getting in touch with you to avail your services?
Marketing is most effective when it is directed towards a relevant demographic. Advertising about makeup is not going to interest a male reader. Likewise, advertising about gym equipment is very less likely to interest a female reader or senior citizen. Combine that with the limited reach. Digital marketing reaches more relevant customers who are more likely to use your product/service, in all the countries of your choice.
3. Remarketing to a Short Attention Span
Remarketing is a marketing activity that aims to target people who have already viewed your ad/visited your website but left without converting into actual customers. Remarketing has huge potential because it aims to encourage a person to come back to your website and avail your service or buy your product.
Traditional marketing methods have no such luxury. Once today’s day is over, or the magazine/newspaper has been read, it will be tossed into the garbage or recycled for other purposes. Then, your ad is gone. Likewise, digital marketing can make use of interactive media to cater to the short attention span of people today. It is not uncommon to see people skim over a piece of content and move ahead within seconds. If there is a video or pictures, however, visitors are more likely to engage. You cannot add pictures or videos to a printed advertisement. But you can add it to your virtual ads and website pages.
All this makes it possible to give past visitors a reason for coming back to your website and engaging/interacting with it.
4. Let’s People Come to You
Having a website means your business is open even when it is closed. Let me explain. Digital marketing has a global reach. This means you can be sitting in the USA and targeting people in Australia, India and the UK. When reaching out to global audiences, time zones play an important role. Now you can’t keep your business open 24 hours a day and constantly be online answering emails and queries. And you certainly cannot expect your customers to communicate with you only during your opening hours.However, that’s always the case with business that uses traditional marketing.
On the contrary, digital marketing allows customers to view your website at any time during the day and communicate with you when they want. You must have ordered something from Amazon or eBay at 7 am in the morning, or sent an enquiry for a service at midnight. A website gives customers the luxury of interacting with your website on their own time. Thus, it sends customers to you instead of you having to pursue them.
5. Digital Marketing Improves Credibility
Today, businesses thrive on online mentions and reviews. Due to the burgeoning virtual presence, a business gets instant credibility if customers post positive reviews and give top ratings to it. People rely on other people they trust for information. If someone has ordered your product and liked it, and took the time out to post about it on the internet, it will encourage other people into trying out your product for themselves.Businesses rely on user reviews for building an online reputation. Digital marketing helps reach your audience, and their reviews about your business bolster your virtual credibility. It is an online form of word-of-mouth publicity.
So why do businesses need a website and digital marketing? To ensure success, revenue, reputation and profits. Basically to sustain in the market and grow. Traditional marketing mediums are, and will be, strongly constant, but they are not enough anymore. Putting your business on the net with a website and making people aware of it through digital marketing will ensure a wider reach, greater audience, and potentially more profits.
Atul is Founder & CEO at Xenia Consulting. He has over 22 years of experience in marketing, across corporates as well as SME,start-ups. Over the last 5 years, he has gained significant expertise and has helped several companies drive growth leveraging digital marketing