Many small businesses run a lean operation: little to no overhead, small payroll, and very low expenses. Oftentimes, their main focus is on the day-to-day necessities and any issues that arise. But unless you are not interested in growing your business, having a modern, optimized website needs to be a priority.

However, 40% of small businesses don’t have a website. This doesn’t mean they aren’t online. Having a presence on social media can only help so much in establishing a reputable brand. Being present and engaging with customers and similar brands on social media will help grow visibility and relationships, but it doesn’t serve up the bulk of your brand. Websites are not just for selling a product or a service, but for educating your customers and offering value.

Your website is the greatest form of marketing and communication you can provide. Traditional marketing, such as mailers, billboards, newspaper ads, radio, etc. are not designed with small businesses and local brands in mind. Those forms of marketing are incredibly costly and provide a low ROI.

Proof in the Numbers

Around the world, there are 3.5 billion Google searches everyday. And that number grows by roughly 10% each year. When a person searches for something online, they want to find results quickly and efficiently. Social media sites do not affect your SEO (Search Engine Optimization) so having a website will get you and your brand found. Out of the 86% of consumers that rely on the internet to find local businesses, 29% of them search specifically for local businesses once a week.

In fact, websites are more beneficial for small businesses because of Google’s ability to refine local searches. If someone in Baltimore, MD searches for “bakeries near me,” Google will not show them bakeries in New York or Florida. They will see bakeries that are local and in Baltimore. (But more on why local searches are so important later!) A website is a great opportunity for local businesses to connect with local consumers - 70% of U.S. households use the intern