5 min

The REAL reason you need a website

By David Lee

When I ask this question to new clients, the #1 reason they give me is: "Lead Generation!"

This is a totally valid COMPANY reason for having a website. After all, you are investing hard earned dollars into your website, so the outcome you are looking for is qualified leads.

But, people visiting your website have very little interest in signing up for your newsletter, be put into your nurturing email campaign or become a lead in your sale funnel.

People visit your website because they are looking to solve their problem.

They are looking to educate them selves on possible solutions.

And they will only press that [Contact Us] button AFTER you demonstrate that you understand their problems, have the expertise to solve their problems and you are easy to work with.

So, its time for all of us to stop thinking of our website as a lead generation machine and start to understand how your website fits into how people make purchasing decisions in the digital age.

It all comes down to this:

Three Reasons you need a website

#1: People are afraid of making mistakes.

I’m sure you’ve seen this:

You’re driving down a street (or freeway) and suddenly, a car cuts over two or more lanes just so that he can make the right turn or reach the freeway exit. He absolutely cannot acknowledge that he made a mistake and do a U-turn or take the next off-ramp. Instead he has to “win” and make that turn.

This psychological behavior of avoiding mistakes also applies when making buying decisions:

We do not want to choose the wrong product or hire the wrong company.

And that leads us to a conditioned response:

#2: We research before we buy

Can you recall the last time you bought something of material value where you did not research the snot out of it?

I certainly can’t.

Can you imagine walking on to a car dealership lot and not knowing the model, trim, option package, and color of the car you want?

In fact, the only question you want to ask the salesperson is the only problem that can't be solved with an online landing page: “Can I take that one out for a test drive?

This behavior of researching before we buy applies in the B2B world where your potential customers are looking to solve a problem and if they find you, then they are trying to understand if you, your company, and your products or services are the right solution for them.

I can’t imagine buying a product or a service from a company without researching them.

Can you?  

This leads us to reason:

#3: People research your company online

Maybe I am dating myself, but back when I was growing up, "research" was going down to the library and into the card catalog to find, maybe, something of value.

Old School Search Engine - dewey decimal systemWhile some of you miss those "good old days" of the Dewey Decimal System. I don't.

Today, when people want to learn something, the vast majority turn to search engines and it goes something like this:

  1. Ask Google search their question

  2. Skim through the search engine results page (SERP)

  3. Click on the link that answers their question

Usually this click leads to a website that the search engine overlords (Alphabet Inc and Microsoft Inc) deems the most worthy.

Now fellow marketers, don't split hairs with me. Yes, that click can go to a lot of other places like a image, a map, a pdf, a social media posts, or video. But I think we can agree that MOST of the time all clicks to other destinations eventually turns into website traffic.

So in the end, when potential customers research, they go to your website. Don't take my word, for it: according to Forrester, 

  • 68% prefer to research by themselves online

  • 62% of B2B buyers develop short lists based solely on digital content.

If you don't allocate enough budget to your website strategy and marketing efforts, then it is likely that you have not devoted enough time and resources in creating content that helps people verify that you: 

1) Understand their problems.

2) Have the expertise to help them find a solution.

3) Are easy to work with.

If your website is not addressing their purchasing concerns with targeted and focused content, then they will bounce from your site and look for someone else.

Next Steps

Some homework for you: Think about your own website and ask yourself:

  1. Does my company website help visitors solve their problems with educational content?

  2. Does my website reduce potential clients fear of making the wrong purchasing decision?

Don’t worry about the marketing fluff, SEO keywords, how pretty your pages look. or size of your logo.

Think about if you are guiding your prospective customer through their buyer’s journey and helping them make an informed decision.

Is your website doing that? 


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David Lee

David Lee

Leveraging 20+ years of experience with Fortune 500 companies including Toyota, Beckman Coulter, and Deloitte, I craft data-driven website and content strategies to help companies compete and win in the digital age. Explore my insight articles to learn what works and how to craft winning strategies and tactics to move the revenue needle for your company.