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The Importance of an Online Presence for Businesses

With the use of the internet companies are able to do business 24 hours a day. Online shopping is consistently growing with approximately £135 billion of all retail shopping completed through company websites. According to Goldman Sachs Group Inc., by 2020 online shopping is predicted to surpass high street shopping and reach into the trillions. Not only is having an online presence an excellent way to bring in an excellent revenue, it also allows for advertisement and marketing opportunities.

Over two billion people as of 2011 are said to have internet access representing 30% of the worlds population. Therefore an online presence allows for individuals to access information and purchase items or services from across global distances. The online market offers unimaginable opportunities via marketing methods of online advertisements. Generally a company will have to invest some financial resources to pay for advertisements on other websites or to hire a company to design their website.

Amazon.com are one of the most popular online businesses with excellent online presence. This online retailer invests 19% of its financial resources in technology which includes ensuring that they provide a safe environment for their customers. In comparison other high street shops only invest 2% of their income on their online presence. However Amazon provide an excellent example of how having an online presence can increase sales substantially, with a predicted 25% growth rate and £7 billion increase during the next few years.

However, companies can fail to be successful online due to the presentation of a site that lacks professional credibility if not conducted properly. This is essential in website design as a customer may become more wary of sites that lack a proficient aesthetic appeal, and if they do not feel comfortable with a site that looks untrustworthy that company is at risk of losing potential sales.

A company's website is their advertisement to everyone with internet access. No matter the reason of the website it should be a pleasurable experience for an individual to visit. Therefore the primary concern when designing a website is the way in which its users will experience it. It should be visually appealing and easy to navigate otherwise if a customer becomes frustrated they will leave the site before looking at what that business has to offer.

Therefore some key points to designing a website include:

Developing an online presence takes time, effort and money, but the long term benefits are worth it. The highlight of having a company website means that customers can stumble upon them and purchase items that would not have occurred from a shop on the high street or ad in the local yellow pages. There is room for everyone and with such a large consumer base there is ample opportunity for businesses to establish themselves.



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