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Changing Times: the importance of a dynamic website in the online market. May 22, 2018

Times have changed, online sales have soared over the last 5 years, dominating 25% of the total market, consumer goods are available at the click of a button, from groceries to travel insurance.

We are now in an era where we are witnessing the growth of gargantuan corporations, predominantly based in the United States, the like of which has not been seen before. Companies like Apple, Amazon, Google, Facebook, Microsoft etc. dominate hundreds of sectors across the market, and we are left wondering how? How is it that such a broad range of consumer sectors can be monopolised by a handful of companies. The imposing reputation of these companies means that they now threaten to drive out smaller businesses who will either be absorbed by these mighty conglomerates or face extinction. But is there a way to fight back?

Many businesses, especially those in Europe, are under the impression that simply having a website is enough to attract customers and elevate your profits to rival those of Apple, Google, Amazon etc. However, this is no longer the case. The quality of a website is as much of a selling point as the products. When a customer lands on your page, it will take around 20 seconds for them to decide whether they want to remain. Every single page needs to be a draw and entice them to keep looking. This means that your web designer has to have the budget and time to create such a product. Oftentimes, this is overlooked and scoffed at by decision makers. Even though they have chosen to outsource, there is little thought given to how much time and skill, a well thought out, a dynamic website can take to build.  This makes little to no sense when we think about cars and houses that can cost hundreds of thousands. We reason that for top quality, high-end prices must be paid. Why then has online technology not caught up?

Amazon is the mammoth at the centre of consumerism, they sell nearly everything and are the first place many customers flock to. However, what are they? A huge supply chain? An accelerated delivery service? A trustworthy company? Well, yes, Amazon encapsulates all of the above, but at its heart, Amazon is a website. A dynamic, well thought out, easy to navigate, practical website, created by a team of web and graphic designers.  The website is so good, that most can use it with ease, and thus it is changing the landscape of the high street.

Amazon dominates online sales to point where they are slowly gaining a monopoly, killing off industry after industry e.g. bookshops.  Countless hours, hundreds of people and probably thousands of dollars went into creating that amazingly successful website. They did this because they were building a money-making machine, the future of consumerism

Of course, we cannot all build Amazon, or Google or Apple; these gargantuan conglomerates have made sure of that. While, we can sit here and reminisce over a  few years ago when the internet was still developing and web design and development was blooming, but those days are gone. Consumers have become hugely demanding, their attention span is diminishing and competitiveness online has reached peak levels. I know this sounds all doom and gloom, but there is a way to push back against these titans.

The overlooking of website design, usability, and lack of trust building are costing small and medium-size businesses their existence. Regardless of company size, your website should reflect the passion and belief you have in your business. A website is a vehicle to generate revenue, it is a mirror of our professional soul, and with every passion project, it needs love and attention. The website has to do its job of drawing people in or face falling into the dark void of being forgotten, Myspace, looking at you. Your website is a technological vehicle built to transcend style, ethos and business principles.

To conclude, if you depend on your website to generate a large part of the business, then you are only as good as your website. Just like with any aspect of a business, the more you invest, the more you get out of it, after all, Amazon was not built in a day.

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