Commentary

Web Sites: An Industry MUST!

  • by , December 14, 2007

Imagine going to a store with brick walls all the way around so you couldn’t enter the building to make a purchase. You’d think the owner was crazy. Yet, that’s what businesses are doing when they don’t have a Web site. How do businesses stay in business without a Web site? I don't think they can anymore.

I have a personal example of this short sightedness: I went online to search for my doctor’s phone number and the first thing listed was his divorce decree! Horrified, I called him to tell him about it. He thought he could make a phone call and have it removed. I had to explain how the Web worked and if he didn’t get a Web site soon, everyone would know that he didn’t want to pay for his daughter’s out of state college expenses…(yep, I read it). Does he have a Web site yet? You guessed it…nope. Why? Because it’s “difficult to take time out to get one made.” He doesn’t understand the power of the Internet and how much his decision NOT to have a Web site can hurt his business.

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So, how does this doctor stay in business? Word of mouth and the yellow pages…or, that’s what he thinks. Online-Publishers.org, a not-for profit-that tracks these things, says the Internet dominates ALL other media during the purchase process. In fact, 48% of online users said their initial awareness of a business came from the Internet. Compare that to the 23% who said they knew about the business from word-of-mouth. Even stranger, our friend the doctor actually believes people still use the Yellow Pages!

So, I think the moral of this story is:

a) “Google yourself" so you know what comes up
b) if you don’t have a Web site…Get One…before everyone knows your divorce record.

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