I don’t need a website… do I?

By | September 22, 2008

Lee Sargent from Quit your Day Job http://quityourdayjob.com.au/ kindly has written an article for the Small Business Tech Blog. Highly recommend you check out Lee’s blog and fantastic art work. Thanks Lee.

As a business no matter how big or small it is extremely important to have a website.

You could be excused if you think the above line comes directly from the starving web designer’s phrase book, of course you’re going to say that, but not every business really needs to have a website though… do they?

As a business no matter how big or small it is extremely important to have a website.

The answer is always going to be the same, I don’t care what type of industry that you are in, the size of the organisation or that your core business has nothing to do with computers or the internet.  Yes you need a website.

Your competition probably has one and if you were a gambler you would always back better to have a website rather than not:

  • If you don’t have a website and they do, you are behind your competition.
  • If you don’t have a website and they also don’t, you’re both equally behind (waiting on someone who does get one to get ahead).
  • If you both have a website, then you’re on equal footing and it becomes an issue of using your website better than your competition.
  • If you have a website and they don’t then you are ahead of them.

Notice that you are never behind your competition if you have a website, it’s just playing good odds and stacking them in your favour.

People do their research online now, yes you’re probably listed in the online telephone directories but consumer confidence is always going to go where they can get more information.

Say for instance your Indian restaurant is listed in a directory, it has your address and your phone number.  Next to your restaurant’s entry is Joe’s Indian restaurant with a link to his website.  Your potential customer clicks on his link (the easiest thing in the world to do), because they’ve already gotten all the information they can about your restaurant (phone number and address).  On Joe’s site he has the menu, photos of the restaurant and a map on how to get there.

Joe wants my patronage more and he’s made it easier for me to give it.

But my business doesn’t have any information to put on a website!

Remember the Who, What, Where, When and Why:

  • Who are you?
  • What do you do?
  • Where can I find you?
  • When are you open?
  • Why should I give you my business?

So here is an example of smallish business that you may not think can benefit from a website, think about it though if you were a potential customer and how useful this information may be:

A Small Family Dry Cleaner

What time do they open, how do I get to the shop, can I get same day cleaning, do they treat leather, what type of chemicals do they use, do they do alterations, any specialities, do they offer repeat business discounts etc.

The importance here is that anyone looking for a dry cleaner in this area (and probably surrounding areas) has been armed with information about the business and whether it suits the customer’s needs.  It also presents the business owner as an expert in their field, especially if they were to include tips such as how to care for garments and minimise damage after a stain.

My point is that as a small business you shouldn’t underestimate the power of empowering your potential customers with information about your services and a website can be paramount to this endeavour.

As a business no matter how big or small it is extremely important to have a website.

4 thoughts on “I don’t need a website… do I?

  1. Dan Waldron

    I found your site on technorati and read a few of your other posts. Keep up the good work. I just added your RSS feed to my Google News Reader. Looking forward to reading more from you down the road!

  2. smallbusinesstech

    Thanks Dan for the kind feedback, much appreciated.

    Cheers for adding the rss feed and hope you enjoy our future articles also.

  3. Amber

    Great article Lee! Good read and full of important information. I find that it really annoys me when I can’t find a company online. I always go online to find addresses/phone numbers of local businesses first, before heading to the phone book. When trying out a new restaurant, we really like to pull up the menu online since my husband is a bit of a picky eater to make sure that there is something he can eat there. Once again great article!

  4. leesargent

    Thanks for saying so Amber. It’s through my own frustration with small businesses having no website.

    There is something that is almost as bad: outdated badly put together websites designed by 14 year olds 🙂

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