How can a Web site help your business grow during an economic downturn?

Even in the most difficult times, companies must continue to invest both money and time in technology. If they do not, they lose a key opportunity to gain a competitive advantage and maintain their ability to respond to marketplace changes quickly. Here are a few hints about how to use your Web site effectively in difficult economic times.
  • If your company does not have a Web site, you will be surprised at how affordable it can be, if done properly.

    1. Start small. Concentrate on the design and a few essential pages - the home page, a page about your business, the products or services you offer, and a contact page. You can always add more later.

    2. Use graphics and effects sparingly. Again, more can be added as time goes by.

    3. Use your site as an on line catalogue. If you want to accept orders, you can have an order form that can be printed out and sent to you via mail or fax. You can also accept orders via phone. This is a good way to “get your feet wet” and get used to working with the Internet, without incurring the expense of a shopping cart or secure server.

    4. If your site is designed properly, it will be easy to convert your “pseudo-shopping cart” into a real cart with an ability to choose size and quantity, and have buy buttons and secure processing.
  • Focus on your best selling products first. If they don’t do well off line, they probably won’t do well on line.

  • Use your Web site as a resource for your current clients. Create an on-line newsletter with news about your industry or area of expertise. Don’t forget to add some news about your company or yourself. Update this section regularly.

    1. A Web site is less expensive to maintain than your print ads, flyers, and brochures. It is quicker too.

    2. You can use your web site to communicate a position of confidence, stability and strength in your market place.

  • Conduct web-based surveys and promotions aimed at gathering opinions. Use the results to reevaluate your offerings.

Portions of this article have appeared in Business Talk, the newsletter for the Monmouth Chapter of the New Jersey Association of Women Business Owners (NJAWBO) 2002
Copyright Elizabeth Milio, Innovative Computer Services, LLC
All Rights Reserved

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