Your competition has a web site. Knowing what your competition is online and being found means they are getting work you are missing out on. Do they know something you don't?
A web site is the only form of advertising that works for you 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, and doesn't have peaks and valleys like print advertising. The web site is always fresh, always inviting, and always ready to serve.
Two Words Say Everything
A web site is the most in-depth information that you can give the public, usually in a word or two. By promoting your web site, on the front door (when you are closed), on your business cards, on the telephone to someone looking for your location, in your radio advertisements, on your yellow pages ad, everywhere - you can essentially tell everything about your operation with that simple word: MyBusiness.com
No More Yelllow Pages
People don't use the yellow pages. Almost every employee in the country that gets paid more than $30,000/year has a computer at their desk. Few have a copy of the yellow pages nearby. Habitually, they will type in gift shops in Google long before they hunt down the one copy of the yellow pages that was left in the break room.
Time is Money
How much time do you spend on the phone giving out trivial information? Directions, what you carry, what you don't carry, what hours you are open, directions again, the price of some service, how one of your services works, directions once again, and yes you will be open until 6pm tomorrow night. You will be surprised how much your web site will take off your shoulders while simultaneously driving business to you.
Your repeat business is your whole business. I'll say it again. Your repeat business is your whole business. When your customers are reminded of you more frequently, they'll be in to see you more frequently. Did you want to mail those specials (at considerable time and cost to you), or did you want to email those specials to them (at no cost and little time to you)? Most of your clients (even seniors!) will prefer an email - you will be surprised if you haven't been doing it. Don't let those clients discover somebody new. Keep them coming back to you!
The New Word of Mouth
Some business owners say, most of our business comes from word of mouth. Isn't that great? Of course, the business has little choice to grow any other way if the owners aren't pro-actively soliciting new clients. Word of mouth is the only way anyone will find out about it. But the New Word of Mouth is email and the internet.
Existence is Everything
Without a web site, you don't exist to numbers of potential customers. Now before you look back at all your success and dismiss this idea, consider this simple exercise. It's 3:00pm, Friday afternoon. I have to get my hair done this weekend. (Or find a kennel for the dog, or an auto transmission shop, etc.) I type in my favorite search engine at work: Palm Bay hair salon The first three links all look promising. I look at their hours, their locations, read a little about the owner of one (Wow - she's been doing this for 23 years!) and pick up the phone and make an appointment. But guess what I didn't know. I didn't know that you run a hair salon six blocks from where I'll be having lunch tomorrow. I didn't know that - because your web site didn't come up. For me, you didn't even exist.
The Future of Automation
Even though you aren't selling things online, you can highly automate some parts of your business online - even today. You could give your customers the option to pay for their storage unit online. You can automate furniture deliveries to them. You can allow them to book appointments with your salon online - or make restaurant registrations. And it is only getting easier and more convenient for customers to shop at places that serve them around their lifestyle.
Inexpensive and Delivers
All the above benefits are great. In the past, these benefits would have been costly. But while every other advertising medium has increased in price over the past decade, web site development and hosting has decreased significantly. For a small investment, you can obtain all the benefits above. There is virtually no risk. You don't have to spend thousands of dollars and wonder if you should have bought a bigger yellow pages ad. You can guarantee a new beginning for your business today for a very small investment in yourself and your future.