Small business owners have been warned they’re losing out on sales if they neglect their websites, but they might still underestimate the importance of this channel for their bottom lines. According to the latest data from comScore, consumers are opening their wallets wider than ever when surfing the web, and ecommerce spending increased 16 percent between Q1 and Q2 2013. During that time, people purchased $49.8 million dollars worth of products and services at online storefronts, which totals to about 9.6 percent of all discretionary spending.
If consumers are drawn to pages to buy, SMBs might assume they don’t need website content upon the principle that blog articles could distract site visitors from the items they came to purchase. This is not the case, as most consumers must develop a sense of trust before they will purchase from online businesses. Custom content allows SMBs to convey their personalities and express their values when there aren’t sales associates to convey these messages.
A recent blog by ContentLEAD’s Senior Editor Rebecca Crockett explains that hard sells are not always the most effective way to push internet users through the sales funnel. Often, website visitors simply want more information when they first come to a company’s page and they might be discouraged from returning – and buying – if they aren’t given anything of value.
As internet access becomes an expectation rather than an exception, it makes sense to assume consumers will only increase the amount of time and money they spend on the web. ContentLEAD recently reported Google is bringing high-speed WiFi access to 7,000 Starbucks locations throughout the United States in an effort to keep people connected more often. This is not an isolated example and customers with 24/7 web access will expect the businesses they patronize to be on the ‘net.