As you go through all the steps of starting a new business, the one fear that is probably running through your head is, What if it fails? While it is impossible to predict the future, you want to do everything you possibly can to make sure your business gets up-and-running as well as it possibly can. One thing you want to concentrate on is your web presence it’s a bigger deal than you might think.

Your Customer Base is Larger Than You Think

If you have a small business, you may not think about the possibility that your customer base can reach outside your general area. Shopping online is huge. A Techcrunch article estimated that nearly $43 billion dollars were spent in the fourth quarter of 2011 alone. Even buyers based outside your home country are willing to shop online and give you business if you’re willing to offer a means to do it.

There are an abundance of online shopping cart options that you can work into your website including:

  • Volusion
  • Shopify
  • Shopping Cart Elite
  • Ashop Commerce
  • BigCommerce
  • 3DCart
  • ShopSite Pro

Customers Expect to Find Your Company Online

In today’s internet-driven economy, customers expect to easily find a business online. Customers want to view offerings in a web storefront, and many people find that communicating online is a convenient way to do business. If you have never run a web page, you may want to look at a site like that aggregates information about web-hosting providers.

Creating a simple web presence using WordPress or another similar program is much simpler than coding a page by hand like you had to do in the past. Conduct a website review and make sure you provide ways for your customers to contact you, either by email, social marketing or by simply providing your phone number on the web page.

Social Media is a Free Form of Marketing

According to PC Magazine, more than 51% of Americans over age 12 have a Facebook account. Connecting with your customers using social networking is easy. Simply choose a network (or two or three), make an account and get your name out there. Find your regular customers and encourage them to “like” or “follow” you. When you conduct a web-site review, add buttons where your customers can easily follow you. When having a sale, or recently added a new product, make sure you announce it on your social-network account. When your following becomes large enough, you’ll find that your messages are shared and liked. This is called viral marketing and expands your reach with no cost to you.

As you can see, going online is one of the best ways to stay connected with your current customers and allow new customers to find you. If you are willing to put in the effort to build a strong online presence for your company, you will reap the benefits and find your startup is more likely to experience long-term success.