Well, it’s almost 2018. There are only a few days left, and it will then be January 2018. Things have been tough in 2017, and petrol just went up today by over 73 cents, and is now close to R14 per litre, which is just crazy at the moment.
There is a lot of uncertainty in the country at the moment, and people are becoming restless. Everyone is battling at the moment. People are just not spending as much as they used too. Most people just don’t have the money to spend on anything, yet alone, on high-end luxury items.
With 2018 just around the corner, we need to start thinking about hitting the new year with a bang. The strongest will survive, and the internet is the place to be.
Think about it, starting an online business, is just cheaper than trying to start a brick-and-mortar business. There are a lot less overheads, and you don’t have to be stuck in traffic every day.
Anyone can start an online business, and in most situations, all that you need is a roof over your head, a laptop and internet connection. You need to focus on cutting costs, and using things like Email, Skype and WhatsApp, as an alternative to wasting money on traveling and phoning people.
Working from home could save you a lot of money, but its also harder to find customers. You could spend a bit of money every month on targeted adverts. Owning a website can make the difference from being seen as a fly-by-night, or a professional in your industry.
For most small businesses, I would suggest a simple 1- 5 Page, WordPress, Content Management Website. You could easily add more pages in the future, and you will also get access to edit the website content from the backend. WordPress also offers a library of 3rd-party, plugins, and widgets that will be able to extend the functionality of the website.
Every website will also need to be hosted on a Web Server, somewhere in the world. In most situations, 1000MB, or 1GB of web space is usually fine for a simple website, with about 1-5 email accounts.
A website just makes you appear more established as a business. People have definitely become, more and more interested in seeing who is behind a business or a brand.
It’s important for a company to share their core values and company culture, and a website is probably the best way to do this. The most effective websites are those that are quick on loading, visually appealing, clean and uncluttered. I think that there are a lot of websites out there that are just over-bloated, with useless information.
At the end of the day, a website is an effective marketing tool. It’s not something that you should set-and-forget. It’s something that you should be updating on a daily basis. Your website is what most people will judge your business on. It’s the way that your company is displaying itself to the world.
There are a million ways to build a website, but it all depends on the level of quality that you are expecting. All I can say is that you get what you pay for. In most situations, even the simplest website, has taken me from 40 to 80 hours. Yes, it is possible to get the basics up and running in only a few hours, but this depends on any complications.
Most of the time that I spend, goes into designing and coding of the website. And then populating the website with any content that I might get from a client. But in most situation, 1-5 pages is more than enough for most businesses.
A website should be the center of all your marketing efforts. This is where you would want to send your clients, to find out more about your business. Yes, you should also have social media profiles, such as Facebook, Instagram or Twitter, which you would help you engage with your followers.
The perfect mix would be, a combination of all of them, but it can be very time to consuming, trying to update and manage, all of them. This is why most companies have now started hire their own graphic designers and web designers. It’s cheaper to employee people on a full-time basis, to change and update their websites, and social media profiles.
As a small business owner, or entrepreneur, you will need to try to do as much as you can yourself, you try cut costs. Somehow, you will need to focus on all of them, and it’s not easy. But I would suggest that you focus on building a successful website, and then in your spare time, connect and engage with your customers on social media.