I think we're all in agreement that having your own website is a good idea. But I think the more important question is knowing when it's important to have one, and when it's a distraction.
Let's remind ourselves of some key reasons why it's a great idea to have your own website.
- You own it, there is zero risk of fees increasing or algorithms changing which affect your business negatively
- Increased branding opportunities, you're not restricted by the proprietary platform's rules
- You're spreading the risk, not putting all your sales eggs in one basket such as Etsy
- Gives you automatic authority, you establish yourself as a serious business
- Can use more advanced marketing features such as landing pages and collecting email addresses
- More profitible, all the income from a sale from your website goes to you
All sounds great, right? So why wouldn't you have one?
Well....because sometimes setting up a website can be a distraction and an additional resource drain on your business, if you are not at the appropriate stage.
3 reasons why you shouldn't consider a website...yet.
You're only 0-6 months into your business journey
I wouldn't recommend that you even think about having a website at this early stage. Why? Because you need to spend the formative months validating your craft, honing your brand voice and researching the market.
I would hazard a guess that if you asked any business owner their vision for their brand in month 1 versus month 10 it would look very different. So save yourself the headache of having to redo a website and put it on the back burner until you are sure of the fundamentals of your business.
Considering a change in direction/rebrand
If you're thinking that you'd like to take your business in another direction and you haven't created a website yet, then hold off until you have that clear in your mind. Again you might need to test the market, check with your current audience their desirability, check if the new direction is feasible first.
You're busy enough with your current online presence
One of the biggest assumptions about having a website is that you create one and then the sales will come rolling in. You'll be found on google as quick as a flash and it's a sure fire way of generating income. Afraid it's not that simple.
If you want to run a successful website, and create it yourself there is a huge learning curve from SEO to metatags, and you have to dedicate time and energy to it. Of course you can outsource it to a web designer, but even then you will still need to guide them to understand your vision and brand voice.
In synopsis, don't rush into having a website thinking it's an essential business tool. You can run a very successful business from social media and Etsy/Shopify alone, however when you are at a stage to start upgrading, it's a great next step.