As more and more people say goodbye to the giant Yellow and White Pages and rely more and more on the internet to find businesses or services, we rely on Google (mostly) to help us in our research.
As a mom, and a sometimes researcher for contact information, nothing is more frustrating when the only information available is a google map of where the business is, and a telephone number.
Why? Because we live in an world that demands instant information.
We live by our smart phones and rarely – actually – to PHONE people, but instead to look up information on what we need or want right there and then. Even a phone call seems to much effort for those living in cyber space. I also find it difficult to carry on conversations because I have noisy children at home. If I am out and about and searching…. I want the information at my fingertips.
If I have to choose between businesses that sell the same thing…I will choose the one with a website. Why? Because I want to know the basics right away.
I am looking at hours of operation, contact information, basic product or service information. All the things people USED to phone about or look in the Yellow Pages.
Those days are done. And if there is no email address!!!
People want to see a company that is reaching out to there customers and is aware of just how many potential customers are on the internet. And reaching out is the key. The more YOU give of your company…the more you represent yourselves as human beings behind a product or service….the more impressed your cyber customers will be.
It doesn’t matter what type of business you are…..you NEED a website to compete.
Small businesses worry about the cost of web development and can be overwhelmed with the whole ”let’s build you an online marketing plan.’ But it doesn’t HAVE to be expensive and it doesn’t HAVE to be complicated. Blog platforms like WordPress are simple to set up with LOTS of help online and many many free themes to get you started. There are also many talented blog designers out there who won’t cut too deeply into your bottom line either.
In fact, a blog platform is a great way to start out. A blog filled with content that is not just a sales pitch is a great way to reach out to your customers. A blog can cover all the basics and reach out to the community and be used to share information on sales, specials and related issues surrounding your industry.
Granted, blog writing takes time and some talent (we like to think so!) – but again…it doesn’t have to be big and difficult and complicated…..a blog or a website is what you make of it as long as you are covering those basics I already mentioned.