Why You Might Not Need a Website After All

Why You Might Not Need a Website After All

During the past several weeks, my husband and I have been in the process of selling our house and buying a new one.

Thanks to help from our amazing Realtor, we opted to buy a new construction home from a local builder who primarily focuses on our neighborhood.

When considering working with this builder, we didn’t have a fancy website to review. The Realtor simply sent over the house plans and the builder’s Facebook page.

That’s it.

No website or fancy brochures. Just a Facebook page filled with pictures of the builder’s previous projects.

But, that was enough for us to get a sense of this company’s style and craftsmanship that we wanted to meet with the builder and tour a home.

Facebook Likes = Potential Buyers
 

When we met with the builder, he shared the Facebook has been a tremendous marketing tool for him.

Thanks to Facebook, he’s able to tell when he’s about to hear from a potential buyer.

When he gets a new “like”, he knows that he will typically hear from that person in about four days.

FOUR DAYS.

That’s incredible business intelligence.

And for him, Facebook is doing everything he needs it to — it provides a simple and cost effective way to showcase his work for interested buyers.

Could a website be beneficial for this builder?

Sure.

But, as the builder put it, he can only build so many houses in a year. Because the builder owns small company that works in a narrowly defined market, he doesn’t need to spend a ton of time on marketing.

Between his signs, his Facebook page and word of mouth referrals, the builder has no trouble quickly selling his homes — all without the time and expense of a website.

Do You Need a Website?

The conventional wisdom is that every company needs a website (and yes, I’m a big proponent of this). But, the reality is that’s not always true.

There are definitely times when a website might not make the most sense for your company. Here are just a few examples:

  • Other marketing efforts are more cost effective and beneficial to your company.
  • Your customers prefer other forms of communication or marketing (social media, email, mobile app, text message, etc.)
  • Your business is built entirely on referrals, government contracts, etc.
  • Your company is hyper local and relies heavily on foot-traffic.

Marketing gurus are often quick to prescribe things that every company needs to do.

But, here’s the thing — you are not every company. What works for one type of business does not work for everyone.

You have to discover what works best for your business, your brand and your customers.

And, this thinking doesn’t just refer to websites. This same thing goes for social media and plenty of other marketing tactics. Ultimately, that might mean cutting some marketing efforts that don’t fit your needs or your budget.

I’m not suggesting that you throw out the idea of building a website altogether or your abandon your latest marketing effort because of this post.

However, don’t simply assume you need to employ a marketing tactic because every other business is doing it. Build the marketing strategy that makes sense for your business and budget.

On rare occasions, that might mean you don’t need a website after all.

What do you think? Are there ever times when a company doesn’t need a website?

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Laura Click

Laura Click

Laura Click is brand strategist, speaker, podcaster and the founder of Blue Kite. Learn more about Laura and her work at Blue Kite.

4 replies on “Why You Might Not Need a Website After All”

Hi Laura, I totally buy-in where you say, “You are not every company. What works for one type of business does not work for everyone.” It’s kind of a Pepsi 1/1 thing. (BTW, congrats on the new home, how exciting!)

Here’s my one reservation…and I’m sure you’ve dealt with this before (in fact, I thought you wrote a post on it?) I call it the “Facebook Effect”. The danger of not hosting your own content is how quickly you can find yourself on the outside looking in. Virtually overnight your business can either be “made invisible” by the whimsical algorithms of the 3rd party service itself, or the 3rd party service can become yesterday’s news by the whimsy of society.

(Your builder does not provide us a good example, since offline referrals drive traffic to his page, which might as well be on MySpace.)

Hi Stephen – You’re absolutely right about Facebook. And yes, I’ve written about that too. I was wondering if someone would remember that!

I certainly don’t advocate making Facebook (or any other social media platform) your home base. It makes more sense to have your content on a place you “own”. Putting everything on Facebook’s platform certainly makes you vulnerable to changes they might make. I even told our builder that! But for him, spending the time and money to a website wasn’t worth it.

This might be somewhat of a rare situation. And, I hope this story doesn’t leave people with the idea that Facebook is a suitable website replacement. My hope is that people see that you don’t necessarily have to invest in certain marketing tactics because “everyone else does”. I love marketers (and I am one), but I think sometimes we give advice that’s more helpful to our own bottom line than recognizing that some of these things aren’t necessary for every single business.

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