More than 30 years have passed since the first pioneers ventured into presenting their company, their products, their services in the then almost unexplored universe of the web.
The first sites were static, slow connections and 56k modems were used with that sound that now smacks of nostalgia for those who remember it, loading a page with dynamic images was not an easy task, but such was the surprise for those who had the patience to wait for some to take the risk of leaving visitors waiting in order to appear with an impactful and innovative result for the time.
The first Aliweb search engine was slowly joined by other browsers to find information on the net and Virgilio, Altavista, Lycos, Yahoo arrived, in 1998 Google appeared, what would later become the reference point for internet surfers and ate the market leaving the crumbs to others.
The first service in this sense was Sixdegress, created by Andrew Weinreich and launched in 1997, with the aim of combining meetings and relationships without the danger of false identities and the presence in chat of people with bad intentions.
Similar is the Friendster concept by Johnatan Abrams, founded in 2002 and launched in March of the following year, also with the aim of creating a safe environment for making new friends.
Also in 2003 comes MySpace by Tom Anderson and Chris Dewolf, a virtual community that offers users personal profiles and multimedia products where they can upload their audio files, images and videos, up to a certain Mark Zuckenberg who lands on the web in February 2004 with Facebook, the platform that will in fact open the doors to social media as a mass phenomenon.
In 2007 another important event takes place which will contribute significantly to the use of these platforms and to the even more frequent use of the internet by all of us.
In January of that year, Steve Jobs presented the iPhone and with it a new way of communicating through a device on the internet, the concept of the mobile phone was changed and disappeared to switch to the smartphone.
All this must be remembered not only to make a brief summary of the previous episodes, or of how the universe of the internet world appeared when the precursors decided to access and communicate through this technology or to do simple teaching to the ‘millennials’ who do not have lived that period, who came into the world already with a Smartphone in hand and who will be reading these lines as if immersed in a history book with dusty and faded pages, but to underline the gross error that still too many do today, that is to treat their own communication strategy and think of a website as 25/30 years ago, without having understood its evolutionary dynamics.
Not having this in mind can even lead to hearing some improvised pseudo communication professionals who come to say that today there is no need to have a website for a company or a professional, that it is not essential and that it is enough to be present only on social networks, a decidedly ridiculous statement .
Instead, what we need to understand is that today we are not present on the web with our own site to prove that we are innovative or because we find customers as it could have been at the beginning, but simply because we cannot afford not to be there.
I explain better. Have you ever seen a shop in any street or inside a shopping center without a sign and without a window to display the goods?
Have you ever tried to introduce yourself to a customer and then leave without leaving your contact details, a business card with contact details, an information brochure and thinking of being called back? How could that person do it? Using telepathy? Ok, if you believe in telepathy as an effective means of communication and promotion, then you may think that you don’t need a website, if instead you believe that a shop needs a showcase and a sign, rather than someone needs to have your own. address to be able to call you back then the concept of the usefulness of this means of communication should begin to clarify today.
In fact, the website is your showcase, your sign, your business card on the internet and it is obvious that it is essential, whoever says the opposite is saying a blasphemy.
Having said that, an analysis of what you expect from your website must be done carefully, because that showcase needs to be treated like any other physical showcase, it needs to be renewed in the setting up from time to time, it needs to be captivating to to attract, it needs to be ordered to be clearly perceived in its offer and to make the passer-by be enticed to enter to find out what you have to offer and be able to buy.
But this is another chapter and we will talk about it specifically in another article, for the moment the important thing is that it is clear the concept that not having a website, to date, is like having a shop without a showcase or being a professional. who visits customers without leaving a business card.
In order to dispel any doubts that creep into the minds of the most skeptical, below is a short list of questions and answers among the most frequent on the subject.
What do I need a website for?
A site is used to let anyone who uses the internet find you, to effectively, quickly and clearly illustrate your products or services through a showcase space that attracts visitors in desires and satisfies their needs.
Is a site used to advertise and find customers?
Only under certain conditions. A site is something you need to have to be on the market, not necessarily to market. To use your site as a marketing tool you must necessarily interact with other communication tools such as social networks, blogs and forums; you have to work on search engine rankings through SEO strategies and you have to make it interesting to the public.
Is it enough for me to only use social media?
No, social networks have communication dynamics that do not fill the lack of an ‘institutional presence’ on the web. Social networks are used to convey users to your showcase, or your site, they are not your showcase.
What are the sites that work?
First of all, those who manage to convert visitors into customers as much as possible. To do this, they need to be structured with precise communication strategies and designed for the target to which they want to introduce us. The content of the site must not only be graphically appealing, but demonstrate substance and personality and at the same time simple to explore and clear in the descriptions.
How much do you have to spend to get a site that works?
Even a few hundred euros can be enough to create an excellent showcase site with everything needed and functional for a complete and effective presentation.
Only in case you want to add other services, such as the possibility of dedicated download areas for visitors-customers, multimedia areas or in the case of hotel structures of forms for booking rooms and connections to management systems, the cost can reach a few thousand euros. . The most important thing is to set it from the beginning considering the basic rules of marketing related to the market that we want to attract and work with the right communication strategy within the pages.
There are 1000 euro sites that yield more than others that have cost much higher figures, because they have been designed and built correctly.