Not everyone succumbed to the advances of the last decade and tossed a website onto the Internet. Small business owners thinking of taking the plunge may wish to learn more first.
Many businesses benefit from the small one started by entrepreneurs. Technology companies seek ways to cater to small business needs; Microsoft and Google do so, as does long time tech firm HP.
HP possesses a distinct interest in small businesses, as it manufactures PCs and printers. Positive outreach toward potential customers in an industry with razor-thin margins gives HP a chance to build a relationship.
Education serves as one way to reach out to small business owners. As part of the HP Learning Center, the company offers several free online courses, one of which caught our attention: Taking Your Small Business Online.
HP said it will cover the reasons for starting a site, basic components it will need, building and designing the web presence, and maintaining it on an ongoing basis.
We advocate an online presence for a few reasons. Major Internet companies have a vested interest in making one’s business easy to find, especially in the growing markets of local search and the nascent mobile search sector.
Keeping pace with the competition, or leaving them behind by stepping up with a website, helps with marketing efforts. A carefully collected and managed email list of interested customers opens up a new avenue for advertising to them, and giving them an online destination for their curiosity.
A prudent small business owner will want to take advantage of whatever life seems willing to hand out, and some free lessons at going from brick and mortar only to adding a digital complement should be useful.