Common Objections Business Owners Make Against Having a Website

We work with small businesses every day, and when it comes to not having a website, we’ve heard just about every excuse on the planet—and they’re all incredibly misguided. I’ve listed the most common objections below, and our typical responses.

OBJECTION #1: “MY BUSINESS IS TOO SMALL, AND I DON’T HAVE THE BUDGET FOR A WEBSITE.”

This is the most common objection we hear from small business owners.

Look…. your website is your number one marketing asset. Saying you don’t have the budget for it is like saying you don’t have the budget for an commercial license you need, you’re going to get in big trouble later if you don’t fork over that initial investment.

Get a website, it doesn’t have to be fancy and expensive, but it needs to exist, and it needs to be able to be found by search engines.

OBJECTION #2: “I ALREADY HAVE ENOUGH BUSINESS. I DON’T NEED A WEBSITE.”

Even if you have more business than you can handle, you need a website, no ifs ands or buts. I recently read an article on website ownership that argued against this. Here’s an excerpt:

“Recently I went to a popular restaurant in a tiny town to discuss a website with the owners. The restaurant was located right on the waterfront. I went just before lunchtime in the dead of winter on a weekday. I figured business would be slow and I could chat briefly with the owner.

The owner was gracious and allowed me to run through the basic benefits giving me her full attention — even taking a few notes.. I finally said, ‘Do you think a website is something you’d be interested in hearing more about?’

This was her reply: ‘We opened this place as a bait and tackle shop. Then people wanted coffee so we provided that. Then some asked for sandwiches, so we provided that. Later they wanted a few tables where they could sit and chat while they ate their sandwiches, so we got tables and chairs and began doing lunches. That led to dinners. Then we didn’t have enough room so we added the screened in porch for the summer. People loved the porch so much that we winterised for the colder months. Now that it’s January, we thought we might be able to close one day a week and get some time off. But we can’t. We’re too busy. We’ve never advertised and we’re tired. If a website is going to bring more people in here — no thanks!’”

Oh, how wrong that business owner is. If that were my client, here’s what I would have said:

“A website doesn’t need to be built for the purpose of adding new customers. According to the National Restaurant Association, 83 percent of people look up dining locations, directions and hours of operation on their smartphones or tablets. Did you ever think that your customers—now and future—may like to see specials and menu items while they’re on the go? What if they’re in a hurry and want to order quickly and leave? What if they want to know your hours and can’t make a phone call? A good website will answer basic questions right away—which could free up time if you’re spending a lot of it answering questions on the phone.

You can add a reservation widget, which again can save your hosts time and make operations more efficient. You can build an online community with recipes, blogs, and places to get local produce.  You can become not only a local favourite, you can gain popularity nationwide and turn your brand into a product all its own. There is SO MUCH a website can do to boost your bottom line without adding more customers, and while you may have enough customers now, you never know what the next decade will bring. It’s best to get your foot in the door with digital now in the event that it’s necessary in the future.”

OBJECTION #2: “I HAVE A GUY THAT SAID HE COULD MAKE ME A WEBSITE FOR FREE.”

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This is a bad idea unless that guy’s career is in web design for your industry.  Having a friend or family member make your website is like trusting a handyman to lay the foundation of a skyscraper. A LOT goes into having an optimised website—SEO optimisation, file compression, responsive design, schema markup, etc.—and if it isn’t built on the right foundation, it will likely topple over.

Even if you DO have a professional web designer as a friend, be careful different industries have different website design standards. For example, a website for health services will have completely different components and markup than a website for the elegance industry.

OBJECTION #3: “OUR CUSTOMERS AREN’T BIG COMPUTER USERS.”

Your customers aren’t “computer users?” That’s baloney. What this business owner is forgetting is that “computer users” aren’t just people using desktop computers. It also includes people browsing websites, social media, and apps on mobile devices.

Not only do 89 percent of adults use the internet, but 77 percent of them own a smartphone, and in 2016, mobile web traffic outpaced desktop web traffic for the first time.

Smartphone = computer user.

OBJECTION #4: I DON’T NEED A WEBSITE BECAUSE I’M NOT ECOMMERCE OR AN ONLINE BUSINESS.

This is a HUGE misconception a lot of people have. Just because you’re not ecommerce does not mean you don’t need a website. People still need to find you, learn about you, and trust you because they buy from you. The large majority of our clients aren’t ecommerce, and each one of them has seen considerable revenue growth from having a website.