The best website builders, which include well-known brands such as Wix and GoDaddy, enable you to create a simple website for your mom-and-pop shop in next to no time. Many platforms come with specialized tools for Ecommerce, taking bookings, and various other actions.
Below, we take a closer look at a few of the top reasons why your mom-and-pop store needs a website.
1. You Can Drive More Customers to Your Store
This one is quite self-explanatory, and it applies to building a digital presence of any description. Putting together a high-quality website will help you appear in the Google search rankings for search phrases relevant to your business.
You should experience particularly good results if you engage in search engine optimization (SEO) to help your website appear higher. Let’s say, for example, that you run a small mom-and-pop butcher in Chicago. With a small amount of work, your website can appear for searches relating to “butcher in Chicago,” naturally driving more people to your physical store.
At the same time, creating a website will simply help more people become aware that you exist. Even if the people who see your website don’t take advantage of your services, they may speak with their friends and family, inadvertently advertising for you.
2. You Can Advertise Sales and Important Events
Another great thing about having your own small business website is how easy it makes advertising. To inform people about up-and-coming events, you can simply post an update to your website—but remember to share to your social media pages as well!
If your business model involves frequent events or sales, you might like to add a calendar to your website. With this, people will be able to view exactly what’s happening, when. You can even add special, online-only sales or benefits to encourage people to check up on your site from time to time.
You might also collect emails or other contact details through your website by encouraging people to sign up for a newsletter or promotional emails. Once you’ve done this, you will be able to send out emails advertising your sales and informing people what’s happening.
3. You Will Appear More Professional
Recent research indicates that 85% of Americans use the internet at least once per day. Over 31% are connected almost constantly. Without a website for your mom-and-pop store, you will be missing out on a large number of potential customers.
This is largely because shops without a website lose credibility in today’s world. Having your own website will help you appear more professional, maintaining a strong brand image in the competitive modern world. Especially if you put some time into your website's design and branding.
This is obviously more important for some business types than others. A small corner store on a street that gets a lot of foot traffic may not lose too much business if it doesn’t have a website, but a specialty shop that sells niche items might.
4. You Can Create a Website Within Hours
Modern small business website builders are designed for those with little to no tech experience. Using one, you will be able to create your own site in a matter of hours, especially if you don’t want anything too fancy.
To get started, you will usually be able to select a template. Once you’ve found a general design that you like, you will be able to customize it. Often, this is as simple as replacing the filler content and images with your own content.
Some of the more beginner-oriented website builders even come with AI design assistants. These usually guide you through a short questionnaire asking about your business and what you hope to achieve with your new website. Then, they present you with a personalized design that you can customize.
5. You Will Be Able to Display Customer Reviews
With your own website, you will be able to easily share and display reviews and testimonials from past customers. This will be particularly useful if you run a service-based or specialty mom-and-pop store. Most website builders come with integrated review elements, enabling you to quickly drag and drop them onto the page. You can often link to 3rd-party platforms like Google to display your reviews from them.
At the same time, your own website will make it much easier for you to collect reviews and testimonials. For example, when someone makes a purchase, you can send them a link to your website and ask them to leave a review. You might be surprised by how many people do.
6. You Will Be Able to Add Online Selling
Most modern website builders include some sort of Ecommerce tools that are designed to help you sell online. Many mom-and-pop stores won’t take advantage of this, but the ones that do can benefit greatly.
In 2021, global Ecommerce sales reached a huge 4.9 trillion US dollars, which equaled just under 20% of global retail sales. By listing your most popular products online, you can get an edge in an increasingly competitive market.
There are a few ways to do this. You might allow people to purchase online for physical pickup. You can offer physical delivery within your local area, or you might even decide to offer national or international shipping.
7. You Can Showcase Your Services
Having your own website can make it extremely easy to showcase your services. Small, service-based mom-and-pop shops are becoming less and less common as they are taken over by larger corporations. But showcasing your services on your website can change this.
Let’s say, for example, that you’ve been having trouble explaining to prospective clients exactly what you have to offer. You could put together a small informational flier to hand out to customers in person, but they may lose it or throw it away. But if you add comprehensive information about your services to your website, customers can refer to it whenever they need to.
8. You Can Run Promotions
Running competitions and promotions is possible without a website, but it’s much easier when you do have one. For example, you can add a special page to your site where people can sign up for your promotion and find all the information they need to know in 1 place.
Let’s say, for example, that you want to offer a 25% off coupon for anyone who completes a short survey. You can add this to your website and make it accessible to anyone who creates an account. Then, you can link the 25% off coupon to their account, enabling them to activate it quickly and efficiently when it comes to using it.
9. You Can Link Your Business to Google Maps
Linking your business to Google Maps can be an extremely beneficial process for a couple of reasons. For starters, adding your website and other business information to your Google Maps profile will help you drive more customers to your shop. When people who are traveling or have just moved to your area search for keywords relevant to your shop on Google Maps, they’ll be able to see that you have a local storefront.
At the same time, you will be able to integrate Google Maps with your website. By embedding a small code snippet—a very simple process—you can show website visitors a small interactive map outlining exactly where your business is.
10. You Can Create a Community
Having your own website will help you create a community around your mom-and-pop store. You can add an email sign-up field to collect people’s contact details, and you can also run promotions and campaigns to encourage people to join your community.
Then, you can send out regular emails. The type of mail you send will depend on your business. For example, a small local corner store owner might focus on community announcements and informational emails. On the other hand, a mom-and-pop specialty store may be best served by promotional emails advertising specific products.
If the thought has ever crossed your mind, then the answer is yes—your mom-and-pop shop needs a website. Having your own website is beneficial for numerous reasons. It will enable you to develop a community, drive more visitors to your store, and help you boost brand awareness.
Your own site will help you open up numerous marketing activities, enabling you to run promotions and display customer reviews. You can even add an online store if you would like to. Either way, your store will only benefit from it.