Small Business Strategy & Website Design

Let me start by thanking you all for the tremendous (and voluminous!) response by questions, queries, suggestions and of course criticism... (Psssst.. for those of you who asked me who I am to analyze Ajay's book, I can only say that if you are reading this blog post I am successful enough in my work to analyze this book) Well, Ajay's book is what he says it is "just a comprehensive knowledge" of internet strategy for small businesses. Planning or setting up a business on the internet is a daunting and an arduous task for most. There are several parameters to be taken care of. It's a question of Why to do it Where to begin How to do it What is the best way to do it? Ajay's ebook tells us the why, the where and the how very precisely. As for the best way to do it, he leaves it for the reader to decide. Quite a lot of business users ask us about the relevancy of having a website. Another set do not want to spend money on upgrading it. Ajay argues that small businesses benefit more from websites than large businesses as large businesses already have brand recognition. Customers, especially in the US check products online before entering a store to make a purchase. Small businesses or relatively unknown businesses can benefit out of this. Does your business really need a online presence? Still in doubt? See these stats. Source: Nielsen Online, December 2008 An average surfer spends 38 hours from his home and visits an amazing 65 domains. So he is not just replying to emails, he is searching or researching The next question is 124 million websites out there, do you stand a chance? Yes you do, if you are smart enough to analyze your business and client behaviors and plan accordingly. However, one of the requirements for a successful online business is that the product or the website should stand out. It has been observed that businesses can become successful sooner if they have
  1. A niche product with a well defined niche market. e.g. selling organic produce to health conscious stores or customers
  2. A product, very different from products available in the market, e.g. the iPod. In this case, Apple first created the market and the demand.
  3. A remarkable business idea like the Aeron chair or Starbucks, where the product fires your imagination and is being most talked about either because of the atrocious price or unique offer.
Do a lot of research on what you want your website to be.
  1. Primarily an information site
  2. An e-commerce site
  3. A combination of both?
These issues will help determine the orientation and budget of your website. To make a website popular you need to add a lot of unique content. Content is the best way to make a site popular and in these days of viral marketing content is said to be king. Load your website with information on products as to how to the product is good or useful or remarkably different from other products. Make your website stand out from other websites. Seth Godin in his book 'Purple Cow' says in this age of bombarding of information and ads to prospects we have become immune to all the stuff. Only the remarkably different stand out. So come out with remarkable new business ideas. Remarkable website idea. Or a remarkable product.
United States: Average Web Usage on Home Panel Month of December 2008
Sessions/Visits Per Person 36
Domains Visited Per Person 65
PC Time Per Person 37:56:49
Duration of a Web Page Viewed 00:00:54
Active Digital Media Universe 153,326,129
Current Digital Media Universe Estimate 222,723,436
Source: Nielsen Online, December 2008 An average surfer spends 38 hours from his home and visits an amazing 65 domains. So he is not just replying to emails, he is searching or researching The next question is 124 million websites out there, do you stand a chance? Yes you do, if you are smart enough to analyze your business and client behaviors and plan accordingly. However, one of the requirements for a successful online business is that the product or the website should stand out. It has been observed that businesses can become successful sooner if they have
  1. A niche product with a well defined niche market. e.g. selling organic produce to health conscious stores or customers
  2. A product, very different from products available in the market, e.g. the iPod. In this case, Apple first created the market and the demand.
  3. A remarkable business idea like the Aeron chair or Starbucks, where the product fires your imagination and is being most talked about either because of the atrocious price or unique offer.
Do a lot of research on what you want your website to be.
  1. Primarily an information site
  2. An e-commerce site
  3. A combination of both?
These issues will help determine the orientation and budget of your website. To make a website popular you need to add a lot of unique content. Content is the best way to make a site popular and in these days of viral marketing content is said to be king. Load your website with information on products as to how to the product is good or useful or remarkably different from other products. Make your website stand out from other websites. Seth Godin in his book 'Purple Cow' says in this age of bombarding of information and ads to prospects we have become immune to all the stuff. Only the remarkably different stand out. So come out with remarkable new business ideas. Remarkable website idea. Or a remarkable product.
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Sangeeta Kumar

Sangeeta Kumar is the Vice President of Web Marketing for GMR Web Team, a global online marketing, strategy, development and maintenance agency. Sangeeta is a jack-of-all-trades kinda person in the world of Internet marketing, excelling in market research to come up with a strategy based on the latest trends to get a website on page 1. She knows her stuff and enjoys a good discussion on SEO anywhere, anytime.