A Good Website Leads To Increased Sales & Brand Credibility For SMEs

By Phesheya Mkhonta

Gone are the days when potential customers would look for your company’s service or product offerings in a physical directory. The first thing they do now is going through Google’s search engine to see what your company does.

It is imperative therefore that when a potential client inquires about your services online they land on your website, a landing page, or at the very least, an active social media page.

The proliferation of the internet and digital media consumption has made it a must for Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) who want to increase their brand presence and awareness to be highly visible and active online.

In actual fact, the Eswatini Communications Commission (ESCCOM) states that more than 82% of emaSwati have a smartphone (2022 Annual Report). This means that your potential client or customer is a cellphone away.

The Small Enterprises Development Company (SEDCO) ran a campaign in 2021 encouraging SMEs to create websites for their businesses. The entity revealed that they witnessed a direct correlation between companies with an online presence, particularly a website, and companies that experience notable growth in sales.

NMT Consulting, (www.nmtconsulting.co.za) a specialized local Legal & Management Consultancy firm that provides business transaction services across various economic sectors shares similar sentiments with SEDCO regarding the importance of having a website as an SME.

“The obvious benefit we derive from having a website is increased visibility, which results in increased inquiries and inevitably sales.”

The Management Consultancy adds that since introducing a website they have witnessed that clients now take them more seriously.

“We have noticed that having a website cements the business’ brand identity and credibility because it assures prospective clients that we are organized and established. We also benefit from showcasing our previous project involvements, our media where we share the latest company news, and most importantly we get an opportunity to display our clients. The data collected from the website and social media reactions also assist in generating market analytics and measure the reach and response towards our services offering.”

Indeed, it is an expectation for any reputable company to have some form of online presence in today’s modern world. Potential customers would not trust a business that does not have a telephone number or a physical address. The same is true for not having a website and email address.

Meanwhile, according to SME South Africa, a one-stop-shop for business owners to access advice, business tools, and resources, Google search offers SMEs by far the biggest opportunity of any marketing channel to date.

By leveraging Google’s paid advertising services, businesses can bid on relevant keywords and attract traffic to their site as long as they’re willing to compete with other brands paying for those same users to click on their ads.

This, essentially, is the science of search engine optimization which is the process of improving a website’s visibility and ranking on search engines such as Google and Yahoo.

Moreover, the organization also encourages SMEs to find ways to connect with customers directly through their social media accounts, and by supplying an email address for newsletters, supplying a phone number for SMS alerts, and signing up for web push notifications.

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