SUBJECT: Don't over look some real power of the internet.
A website can serve many functions, besides the hope of driving new customers to your business. Building powerful referral networks, to find new customers by word of mouth, is hands down my number one choice. There are some huge success stories of companies driving customers from the internet to their businesses, but hope of accomplishing such a phenomenon is beyond my technical skill set. Knowing people who have spent thousands of dollars on websites that have produced a handful of new customers, the risk is beyond my level of tolerance.
The internet offers basic features that make it easier for customers to do business. Simple things like taking online payments. This is a great way to gather information and build a customer email list, for efficient communication. Call Now, Send E-mail, and Pay Now buttons are simple tools that make it easier for customers to conduct business.
Efficient communication with customers. Links to public or private web pages, with descriptions about products or services are easy to share. Customers appreciate receiving links to well written, pertinent information, when making decisions. If someone searching the internet stumbles across a public webpage, written to describe a product or service, to existing customers, even better. Being able to link customers to web pages specifically written for existing customers, is a way to make it easier to do business with them, as well as get them used to coming to the website.
Building and maintaining relationships with word of mouth network. Having a good website provides Information, that members of a referral network can easily pass on to people they know, when the need arises. The easier it is for someone to recommend you the more likely they are to do it. The reverse is generally true as well. Links to new web content can easily be shared with solid referral network to help create a buzz. When it comes to growing a business venture by word of mouth, creating a buzz is King of the Hill.
The possibilities for using the internet to make it easier for existing customers to business with you are endless. Such activities help build strong customer relations and higher customer retention.
Food for thought!
The Wise Guy