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How to Market Your Pet Business Online (Yes, That Probably Means A Website...)
Think you need a website for your pet business? Odds are, you're right, but adding a website means adding a whole new level of complexity to your business marketing. Here are some factors to consider:
Who needs a website?
In my opinion, and the opinion of most business marketing experts, you should have a presence on the web so that customers, potential employees, business partners and perhaps even investors can quickly and easily find out more about your business and the products or services you have to offer.
Bottom line if you don't have a website, you're losing business to other companies that do.
Do you need a website even if your business is small or sells services rather than products?
To begin with, business size doesn't matter. On the Internet, you benefit from having a level playing field. It's easy to compete with businesses smaller and larger than you. If your site is well done, it's easy to project the image and professionalism of a much larger company.
And re: selling online?
Frankly, there's very little that CAN'T be sold online these days! And Internet marketing research firms predict that the number of online consumers will grow at a rate of 30 to 50 percent over the next few years. These numbers alone should be enough to persuade you that your business should have a website.
Besides, websites are important for more than direct sales.
(Read the case study of one dentist who used a popular site building system called SiteBuildIt! It's about 3/4 of the way down the page. He found out that his website was a LOT more effective than Yellow Page advertising for his local community business.)
Is there anyone who shouldn't have a website?
Anyone who isn't willing to invest the time and effort to do it right. If you want to be taken seriously - seriously enough to be given money for a product or service! - seriously enough to have some stranger hand over their precious pup to your care - your site must look and function professionally.
Your website is an important part of making a good first impression on a potential customer. If it looks crappy, loads slowly, has a nightmarish navigation system and oh yes, if you never answer your email - forget it.
On to the nitty-gritty of domain names, website building, and hosting...