What are the advantages of having a website?

Development and distribution costs are extremely low. When you compare the cost of establishing a website to what it costs to promote your business in print or on the air, you'll see that a website is the cheapest form of marketing ever created. A radio campaign featuring several 30-second spots per week for three months could run you J$50,000 - J$100,000. That gets you five minutes per week of exposure for three months in the local area only. Newspaper and magazine ads are similarly highly priced, and only last for the life span of that particular publication.

A website has virtually limitless space. You could put up a website with dozens of photographs and several thousand words from as little as J$3,500 set up cost and hosting from as little as J$6,000 for the first year, and keep it up and running for years after that with minimal cost.  What would it cost to run a newspaper ad of this size for a year? Imagine how much it would cost to produce a catalog for 200 different products and keep it in consumers' hands for an entire year. You can accomplish this with a website very easily with low development cost and almost no distribution cost. Websites are in full color - a palette of 16.7 million colors for your photographs alone.

A website is globally accessible; that means your website can be viewed by anyone, anywhere, as long as they have Internet access. There are no physical limitations to broadcast areas, as in radio nor circulation region restrictions, as in newspapers or magazines.

You can keep your website more current more affordably than any other media. You can update a website immediately and as often as you like. Imagine you sell products whose prices fluctuate. With a website, you can change these prices every time they go up or down, so your marketing materials are always accurate.

The little guys can compete with the big guys since a website is economical and not limited by size. This means a small business can present as large or creative an image on the Internet as a bigger company — with the right design team.

A website also allows easy, safe communication between you and the consumer so that anyone who visits your site can contact you at any time by sending an email. Unlike communications that originate from other forms of advertising, consumers who send emails don't have to deal with many problems of everyday business: pushy salesmen, remembering to call during business hours, having to battle crowds to get to your stores, spending time waiting on voice mail or getting the wrong information. It's convenient, easy, and safe for the consumer. Email is also convenient for you. You can respond to all your customer inquiries at the same time, and do it when you have a free moment — not in the middle of rush hour when someone calls up to ask for product information or directions to your location.

You can save money on tech support and answering questions. If your employees spend a lot of time answering the same questions and sending out the same material, you can reduce that labor cost significantly by providing the information on the website. For instance, a client can avoid having to mail or fax information for over 1,000 phone call solicitations in a one-year period simply by providing the information on their site. That improves on labor costs and provides a real cost savings in reduced long distance phone bills (for faxes) and postage. Your website can also take orders while you sleep as people can place orders on a website at any time, day or night.

But most importantly, no salesmen manning the store, no utilities, no insurance, no payroll ... computers don't need a benefit package or overtime. For every second of every day, your website is working for you!


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