With the popularity of blogs and social media, some companies are thinking they may not need a website. Although a business can be successful without one, I feel it is important to have one. Your website is your home base, the place on the internet where your company/brand lives. All other places on the internet like blog platforms, or social networks are places that you rent space, so if you are serious about your business you don’t want to just RENT, you want to OWN!
According to dictionary.com, “A website is a connected group of pages on the World Wide Web regarded as a single entity, usually maintained by one person or organization and devoted to a single topic or several closely related topics.” Your website really is the place where people will go to learn about your company. Since people go there to learn about your company, your website should include the following:
- The story of your business, including the who, what, where, when & how
- A showcase of your products and/or services
- Appropriate messaging directed to your target audience
- A way to capture leads by offering an email opt-in form
- A way to convert your visitors to purchases with the use of links to sales pages
- A way for people to contact you
- Connections to your social media networks
- Connection to your blog
So what is a blog and how does it differ from your website?
According to dictionary.com, “A blog is a website containing a writer’s or group of writers’ own experiences, observations, opinions, etc., and often having images and links to other websites.” Your blog is where you express your opinions and share your insights about your particular topic with your audience. Your blog should be used for the following:
- To show your expertise
- To offer advice, tips, techniques related to your products and services, or your industry
- To build an audience
- To subtly promote your products and/or services
- To build a community
- To spread the word about your business
- To capture leads when people subscribe to your blog
- To convert visitors to purchase your product or service by using links to sales pages
So now that you know the difference between your website and your blog, do you need both? It depends! If you want to be known as an expert in your industry and you are committed to consistently blogging (posting articles) on your blog, then blogging should be included in your online marketing strategy, but if you are not sure you will have the time to consistently blog and be committed to maintaining your blog, then you should not start a blog. Although it has many benefits, blogging is not for everyone!
On the other hand, having a home base for your business/brand is important, so I feel having a website is a MUST for a business while having a blog is OPTIONAL.
So what do you think, does a business need a blog and a website? Do you have a business blog and a business website?