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Do you have a website?

I posted earlier about the MYOB survey of small business owners’ response to the global financial situation, but am startled by another part of their survey.

Apparently, 60% of surveyed small business owners don’t have a website for their business. That is incredible. They surveyed 1,503 business owners with no more than 19 employees, so it is a reasonable number but perhaps not statistically significant compared to how many small businesses there are in Australia.

Not all businesses are internet based, obviously, but offline businesses can have a website and use it to good effect.

Why am I so surprised they don’t have a website?

  • personally, I often refer to the website for further information or to get a feel for a business before I contact them – no website and there’s a good chance I’ll move on. This is especially true now I have a baby as it is easier to research and compare from home than to drive around
  • a website is like a brochure that works 24 hours a day, every day of the year, so why limit yourself to paper?
  • a website can be a lot cheaper to run than many traditional advertising options (I pay $5 a month for hosting – you won’t get much advertising for $60 a year!)
  • people generally find it easier to remember words than numbers so if you or a happy customer are inviting someone to learn more about your business, a web address could be more successful
  • people expect websites now – not meeting that expectation may decrease your credibility in their eyes

A website can be simple and as short as one or two pages; it can be static and need little maintenance (although search engines prefer more active sites). Some online directories offer full page listings which can act as a website, which is better than nothing, but the URL may be long.

SO back to the original question? Do you have a website? Do other business owners you know have websites? If not, why not?

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