The British Columbia government has just kicked off an initiative to help small businesses take their sales online with a program they are calling ‘Launch Online’. Grants are being offered to small and medium size businesses that invest in ecommerce website development, up to $7,500.
In most cases, $7,500 covers the cost of an e-commerce shop (depending on how many products), plus a little more to set-up online ad campaigns, sales funnel set ups to help draw traffic to your website and social media advertising. With Black Tusk Web Design, we will build a package that encompasses your full sales funnel + your website and even include your hosting and maintenance for the year!
Here is all the information you need to get started: Launch Online
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5 Compelling Reasons You Need a Better Website Now!
A professional website gives your business instant global and local presence which can help you build social proof and boost your brand credibility. According to reliable data from Google, as much as 63% of shopping occasions now start online.
If we’re being honest, then having a business website is a non-negotiable necessity for any growth-driven business in this age. However, there are a million and one reasons why you need a better than an average website. Below are five such reasons;
1. Take advantage of the coronavirus-induced shift in shopping behaviour
Since the first identified cases of COVID-19 in Wuhan, China, the novel coronavirus has spread across different continents leaving nothing but chaos behind. Despite the huge health and economic impact of the COVID-19, the crisis has triggered a major shift in human behaviour.
Everything has changed and social distancing is now the new normal. Here a few statistics that explain the situation better.
There’s a mindset shift currently happening concerning consumer behaviour.
Countries around the world are imposing different lockdown measures to curtail the coronavirus. Therefore, Health agencies have recommended social distancing, among other measures to reduce the spread. More people are now shopping online than ever.
Having a professional website is fundamental to maintaining a solid internet presence. Businesses that want to maintain resilience and drive growth in these challenging times need to be positioned right where the audience can find them.
2. Being ‘searchable’ helps you reach your target audience more easily
Having a beautiful website is good. What’s also important is ensuring your website gets found easily by your customers and prospective customers. In our post on what makes a great website design, we emphasized the critical role of Search Engine Optimization (SEO).
In the same way, Proper SEO should be at the core of your website design strategy to help you get found easily by searchers. When your website is able to garner higher SERP rankings (search engine results pages), you can rest assured that your business’s credibility, visibility, and marketing will also benefit significantly.
3. Your business website reflects your brand
Are you proud of your business website?
Does it do a great job of reflecting your company’s brand identity?
These are important questions because most people are going to equate your website to your business. About 88% of B2B customers referenced high-quality information in regards to their recent purchase decisions, according to a recent Gartner survey.
So, regardless of your industry, your business website should tick the boxes in the right places. In many cases, it will be your best chance to make a first impression.
You can’t afford to lose potential customers if you want to sustain business growth.
Everything from aesthetics to layout, website colour tones, information, and more, should, therefore, be top-notch and up to date. This is important to create a positive brand perception, that builds trust with prospects, converts acquired leads, and ultimately impact your business’s bottom line.
4. Your business website must be functional
You need more than just fancy web design. Your business website should be crisp, highly functional, and fully responsive to get customers on board.
This can mean navigating UI and UX in web design to ensure optimal functionality. It could also mean incorporating website features to greatly improve functionality. These features could include sophisticated web forms to boost conversions, online payment systems for products, services, and subscriptions, as well as proper booking systems as more customers want to take care of these processes online instead of in person.
All of these and more will be needed to make it easy for current clients and prospective customers to transact with your business on your website.
5. User experience impacts sales
Are customers enjoying the experience on your website?
You need to deliver a frictionless user experience for customers on your website as this can impact sales and conversion. Things such as minimizing clicks, for instance, can help to reduce user frustration. This can help with navigation and reduce the amount of time and effort it takes the average user to find information or get things done.
There’s also the DISC personality analysis as well, which should also be factored into your web design to help you design a better website for your audience (clients) based on their different personality traits. The DISC tool helps identify differences in personality by considering your audience (clients) as one of the four possible personality profiles.
Who’s your audience?
Clients that fall into this audience class just want results and are straight to the point. They can be quite blunt and not shy to take on challenges.
This audience class prioritizes relationships and more likely to influence others. They’re quite enthusiastic and optimistic but hate to be ignored.
Personality traits for this audience include being calm in their approach, being more supportive, sincere, and cooperative but hates being rushed.
This audience emphasizes quality and competency above all else. They’re not scared to be wrong, prefer getting full details and reasons objectively.
You’ll have to weigh up your audience with the DISC assessment tool to discover your audience’s viability and uniqueness as well as improve your chance of success by designing a website that best suits your target audience.
Overall, a great website design strategy should have user experience as one of its major objectives. Along with DISC analysis and clicks minimization, a user-centred website should consider;
- Using graphic elements, proper layout, text, and interactive elements in synergy to create memorable experiences; and
- Leveraging design creativity and consistency to achieve optimal clarity and simplicity to make the website easy to use.
It’s clear that while you need a business website, a poorly-designed website won’t cut it. Not only can this be a waste of time, but it could also ruin your company’s chances when it comes to brand perception, building credibility, generating leads, and maximizing conversion.
If you’re contemplating building a website that perfectly fits and promotes your brand identity, then the experts at Black Tusk Web will be more than happy to help.
Our teams of web designers, brand design experts, content writing professionals, and SEO gurus are the right mix you need to build websites that clients will find useful, usable, and desirable. The Black Tusk Web team uses an effective project management system that helps us streamline communication, level up the performance of our web design team that effectively takes the burden of website design off our clients.
Want to build a robust online presence?
The Black Tusk web design team will help you build a professional business website that’s not just an interface between your brand and its customers, but one that will help foster the kind of interactions and experiences needed to make your business and its products or services hugely successful.
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You’ve decided you need to build an online presence for your company. Congrats!
It makes sense that you want to start with building a professional-looking website. You’ve realized just how much this can mean for your marketing as well as business sales & conversion. The only problem now is; your head is spinning with too many options & you just can’t decide which website builder to use. Should you stick to WordPress? Are you tempted to try what Squarespace or Wix might offer? We understand your dilemma & this guide on WordPress vs Wix vs Squarespace has been compiled to help you make the best decision.
WordPress vs Wix vs Squarespace: Overview
These three are unarguably the biggest website builders out there.
All three have a lot of similarities as well as differences that account for their unique strengths & weaknesses. We’ll briefly touch the main points below;
*Let’s start with Squarespace;
Squarespace’s target audience is basically website builders without any coding skills.
The purpose of the platform is to make website building simple stupid such that anyone can build their own website without having to write a single letter of code. While this sounds great & truly quite great to an extent, the need for this level of simplicity has led to a ‘watered down’ & ‘walled garden’ approach to ensure the quality & functionality of Squarespace’s over 3.6 million websites.
*Then, there’s Wix also;
Another cloud-based website building platform for people who want to build websites without coding.
Wix holds 2.3% of the CMS market & powers 1.3% of all websites on the web. To begin with, you’ll want to use one or two of the main ways most people use to set up a Wix Website. Either you use the ‘Wix Editor’ mode where you pick a template & then add the content or you go the ‘Wix ADI’ mode route.
The ‘Wix ADI’ is the short form for Wix Artificial Design Intelligence.
This method builds your website with little to no input from you just by asking you a few questions & then using publicly-available information about your business. Both methods are aimed at people with no coding or web development skills. But there’s also a ‘Wix Corvid’ (this has nothing to do with COVID-19 lol!).
The Corvid mode offers the greatest functionality of all three methods but actually requires significant website coding skills.
*WordPress -the crowd favorite!
WordPress has got a tight grip on the website building niche of the digital industry.
This platform has the largest share (60.8%) of the CMS market, powering about 34% of all the websites in the world, including some of the biggest brands & corporations. While WordPress has two main forms, a hosted version, & another self-hosted version, the latter will be our reference for our comparison.
WordPress; much like Wix & Squarespace is aimed at users with little to no coding skills.
But unlike the others, it also allows room for users to make extensive customizations for more functionalities than either Wix or Squarespace. The WordPress platform can be used to build websites of all types from creating blogs to building ecommerce websites, portfolio websites, professional business websites, etc. There are also tons of plugins to help improve functionality, as well.
WordPress vs Wix vs Squarespace: Who wins?
WordPress will come out on top in this battle of WordPress vs Wix vs Squarespace.
There are currently more than 55,000 plugins in the WordPress directory with loads of features & benefits for WordPress websites. These serve a wide range of purposes from Search Engine Optimization to security & more.
While you may be tempted to take on the WordPress website building process. it would most likely require a bit or in some cases, extensive knowledge of web development. Even in cases where this demand might be minimal, it could take you like forever to get a grip on how to piece the most basic parts together.
You’ll have to decide whether all of this time & commitment are really worth it for you though.
But in most cases, you’ll be better off hiring a professional website designer to handle the process, regardless of whether you eventually go for WordPress, Wix, or Squarespace.
Need to design highly-converting websites for your business?
You can leverage our expertise & experience at the Black Tusk Web to help you build a website that’s fitting for your brand. Contact us to get started today?
We’ll be more than happy to help
Ecommerce: Selling Products and Services Online for the New World
Ecommerce has always been touted as the future of retail, and for obvious reasons
While it tends to make more products and service options available to consumers, it also comes with a certain level of convenience and could help both buyers and sellers save big on time and money. Ecommerce retail raked in $3.5 trillion in sales in 2019 and this is expected to see close to 100% growth by 2023.
Up until now, ecommerce adoption has been largely driven by the need for convenience.
The reality of today and more specifically, the global pandemic is fueling a new wave of ecommerce revolution that’s not just based on convenience but rather as a new, necessary way of life. If you’ve been contemplating it, right now is the best time for your business to take advantage of this revolution.
Jumping on the ecommerce bandwagon
Ecommerce has seen explosive growth over the years.
For your small business, this could represent a much easier way to sell goods & services, attract a larger customer base to grow your business beyond expectations. But while it seems easy, you’ll need to put a certain level of work into this to make it successful. If you’re keen on taking your piece of this trillion-dollar industry, here are a few things you should know;
Having the right ecommerce platform is important
Many people believe that ecommerce is one kind of fully automated business model that doesn’t really require much to become successful on its own. So they just build a website and find themselves struggling to make sales after months or years down the road.
Fortunately, you’ll have access to lots of ecommerce platforms from Woocommerce to Shopify, Bigcommerce, Magento, Squarespace, etc. But choosing the right one, depending on your business’s unique needs, will greatly impact the success of your ecommerce business. While many sellers prefer Woocommerce for its versatility & customizations, here are a few critical factors to consider when you have to choose a platform;
- How scalable is the platform?
- How’s it with SEO and mobile-friendliness?
- Does it support multichannel integration?
- What are the order, product, and return management like?
Knowing what to sell
Setting up an e-commerce website for your business will be much easier if you’re already in the retail business. If you’re however new to this, you might struggle with choosing the right products to sell. What are the best selling products online? How do you choose the best products to sell?
The best thing about ecommerce has to be the easy access to a wide audience.
While you can sell tangible products like apparel to household equipment, electronic gadgets, handcrafted products. you can also sell virtual products such as services & downloadables such as software applications, music or multimedia files, and eBooks, etc. It’s however important to know your target audience so you can customize your marketing & advertising efforts to them.
Developing your brand
This, right here, is also important for success in ecommerce.
You need to develop a brand that resonates with your audience so your product selection & marketing can be tailored to appeal to this audience. This should be evident in everything from your unique selling proposition to your website design and subsequent marketing and advertising efforts.
Taking your retail business online has a lot of advantages.
- The opportunity to position your brand and business before a much wider audience
- The ability to personalize your services and offerings so they can appeal more to your ideal audience.
- Greater opportunity to scale and grow your business over time.
- Opportunity to compete better, even as a small business.
But success here still requires as much work as you can.
You’ll need the expertise of an experienced web designer to help with a top-notch e-commerce site that will guarantee the best of SEO & user experience, while still portraying your brand in the best light.
At Black Tusk Web, we live and breathe design and can create custom ecommerce solutions to help drive your ecommerce business to success. If you’re contemplating building an ecommerce business in Squamish, Whistler, Vancouver and other parts of Canada. we’ll be more than happy to help set up your ecommerce business website for success!