In recent weeks, a number of reports have been circulating about the online presence of small business – or lack thereof. Results of the latest MYOB small business report highlight just how widespread the problem is, with 60 percent of small businesses missing out on online opportunities by not having their own business website.
This worries me as I feel that these businesses are missing out on some incredible opportunities. (Mainly a chance to target us Gen Y’s who live our lives online and are not likely to be reached using any other medium!)
The internet is transforming the way we communicate with each other, providing opportunities to stay connected in ways previously thought unimaginable. Gen Y’s have grown up with technology, we are confident, technically savvy and without wanting to toot our own horn, are THE new customer market to target. If you don’t have an online presence you have lost us straight away. If we want to know about a particular product or service, we go online first. It’s on to Yahoo (“Do you Yahoo?”) or Google, “just Google it.” If we can’t find you on the web, then more often than not we will give up, and find another business that does have a web presence.
Our resident staff blogger James Adonis, recently blogged about the benefits of getting a business on LinkedIn, (read all about it here). Sites like LinkedIn and Twitter take business networking to a new level and put you in contact with people you would have never thought possible. Utilising these sites is a great way to do a bit of free promotion of your business and its products and services. Better yet, if you have an engaging and informative website to complement it, then you are in the game.
As the economic crisis takes hold, businesses are looking for ways to stay afloat. Online communication is the most cost effective way to get your brand noticed, while building your customer base at the same time, AND reach us pesky little Gen Y’s. Now is the time to get connected!
So what I want to know is why the majority of small businesses don’t have their own website?
I would love to hear your thoughts on this.
( For those of you who may just be thinking about getting online, but don’t know where to begin, we have a number of interesting articles that may be of use. Check them out below).
Integrating online and offline marketing
Social Networking to boost your business
Engage customers with web marketing
Ten steps to promote your business online