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Businesses Without Websites

Posted by on Aug 25, 2010

Many of you know that I write blogs for others. One of the sites I write for is a massive real estate blog. It concentrates on home communities and home builders, though I also get to write some commentary here and there.


World Wide Web
by Anthony Mattox

What surprises me is just how many home builders and contractors there are that still don’t have a website. Sure, they’re listed in some fashion via Yahoo maps and Google maps and Manta and other phone number tracking sites, but beyond that there’s no further information on these companies.

It’s frustrating for me because I try to find out more information about either a community or a home builder, and there’s nothing there. In many areas around the country they don’t have home communities, just neighborhoods, and sometimes it’s hard trying to figure out who built those homes. And when you can find them, there’s nothing about them, just a phone number. You don’t know if they build single family, multiple family, condominiums, townhomes… nothing.

Of course it’s not just home builders, but many brick and mortar businesses in general. My wife and I were trying to research snow removal companies that were in our area, but there were only two online, and neither one specifically near our home. Sure, there are plenty of numbers on the search engine, but it would be nice to know which specific neighborhoods these snow removal people like to work in because my wife leaves the house by 5:30 in the morning and it doesn’t do us much good if the builder is on the other side of our town most of the time.

I wrote an article on my SEO website titled Should You Have A Website, and of course I come out on the side that says “yes”. However, I also mentioned some reasons why a business might want a website, and though I could see why someone might, my bet is that most of these companies that don’t have websites do so because they just never thought about it.

In this day and age, when so many more people are internet savvy and would rather look information up on the search engines as opposed to grabbing the Yellow Pages and looking at an ad, it would behoove any legitimate agency to have a website, put up some examples of what they do, and let their online marketing serve their business in ways they’ve never imagined before. It’s the wave of the future; heck, it’s the wave now!
 

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17 Comments »

Of course I am on your side on this issue. It baffles me when I find out that businesses do not find the value in a website, especially when the Internet is in all of our lives. I am not saying that because I am in the website business, I truly believe it, as I know you do too.

There are so many ways that a website will increase revenue, build an identity, and provide value to customers.

I know that when I am trying to find a new service the first thing I do is go to Google. All of the businesses that don’t have a web presence are missing tons of opportunities.

August 25th, 2010 | 4:20 PM
Mitch:

Exactly Keith. I think I’ve opened a phone book once this year, but I’m always going on Google looking for someone to provide some kind of service for me. How so many small business owners are still missing this is beyond me. Then again, maybe that’s how we increase our businesses, right? 🙂

August 26th, 2010 | 12:50 AM
Carl:

Mich, I even can not imagine this, I made my first website 14 years ago and for 11 years I am professional SEO and Internet marketer. All my business is 99% web based. I believe in the power of internet and all the sales are coming exactly from there.

August 26th, 2010 | 8:01 AM
Mitch:

It seems unimaginable, but it’s definitely the norm.

August 26th, 2010 | 10:29 AM

This drives me nuts as I ALWAYS go to the web first, the phone book 2nd.

When we were looking for a campground,we had a heck of a time- most are not on the net- some aren’t even in the phone book.

Both places we liked we found by accident.

Guess who is going to try to barter with the campground owner? A blog or website for reduced camping…..

You never know until you ask….

August 26th, 2010 | 10:21 AM
Mitch:

That’s a good point; I wish I had that kind of nerve, as I see lots of websites that certainly need the work.

August 26th, 2010 | 10:36 AM

Hi Mitch,

I can give you a bit of perspective from the other side. I’ve been in business for 25 years and never had a website. I actually still don’t have one. My business is local and via referrals directly from CPAs, attorneys and existing clients.

I started up my blog for my client’s employees and it happened to take off with web readers. I will be starting a site but only because we want to have a site up for grandfather clause in case we need it in the future and it’s restricted.

50% of my clients don’t have a website because they’re B2B. Their business is via direct sales in very specific niche.

A website is a nice thing but it’s not necessary in some B2B industries.

August 27th, 2010 | 12:50 AM
Mitch:

I’m glad it’s all worked out for you, Kim. I dare say, however, that you’re probably in that .001% that’s lucked out working for yourself and never needing to have a website or to even have to advertise. My business is B2B, and without it I’d never have new business at all. I’ve also known people who had your luxury, so to speak, who suddenly didn’t have it and had no idea where to go or what to do next. I know my accountant friends, for whom I built a website, didn’t necessarily need it, but they’ve also gotten new business from it and thus haven’t only had to rely on word of mouth.

So, maybe not necessarily crucial for everyone, but it certainly can’t hurt anyone.

August 27th, 2010 | 6:41 PM

There are some industries who haven’t decided to explore the possible advantage of using online marketing for their businesses. Since we are currently facing very visible changes in our technology nowadays, businesses must at least consider these changes.

September 8th, 2010 | 4:38 AM
Mitch:

Thanks for your contribution, Cole. I think at least exploring these options makes a lot of sense, as it allows for an informed decision.

September 8th, 2010 | 9:17 PM

Yes, you’re right. But most of us tend to be conservative. You know, the old school way of thinking, way of doing everything…

September 10th, 2010 | 5:20 AM
Mitch:

Unfortunately Cole, old school thinking means getting left behind in today’s world. If you’re already doing okay then fine, but how often have you heard of someone doing well and suddenly losing their main client and having no idea of what to do next?

September 10th, 2010 | 10:43 AM

The possibility of losing clients will surely increase. Of course, clients want to get more or at least want to satisfy themselves of the amount that they are paying. Businesses have no other option but to compete with other businesses in their industry.

September 15th, 2010 | 11:12 PM

Internet is really a growing market nowadays and I think that many businesses that are not on the web is just because they existed before the web started and can’t really comprehend the benefits internet exposure can get bring. I can tell you from real life examples that older businesses don’t care about the internet and they would better place banner on the sidewalk or on poles for higher sums then would take them to open a blog/website about their business.

September 8th, 2010 | 1:43 PM
Mitch:

That is a good point, Alex. I know a guy who has a financial counseling business and he doesn’t have a website because he said he doesn’t have any time to even use the internet. There are going to be folks who just won’t see the value, but then again, if they’re already doing enough business then it’s all good.

September 8th, 2010 | 9:38 PM

Having a well designed web site is really important today. No question. A web site can serve not just one person or business but a group of people. We support over 325 local artists (some of who are the best in North America) and rely on a web site (as well as our studios) to tell people that its good to support local artists – keeps your $ at home.
http://blog.sidestreetstudio.com/wood/10-reasons-why-you-should-buy-local-arts-crafts/

September 16th, 2010 | 1:26 AM
Mitch:

Thanks for your thoughts, Nigel. I would figure that with the type of thing you do a website is a great way to share some of the types of projects people work on.

September 16th, 2010 | 12:05 PM