First – take the time to watch this video. The Business Development Bank of Canada put a lot of effort into providing it as a resource to help Canadian Entrepreneurs. As a Web Professional, I thought it brought up some great points:
Great – now we can talk about a few key points. First – ignore the statistics they’re using, as this video is at least a couple of months old, and things change every day. However, DO think about what the numbers tell you. The internet is here to stay, we all get that. There are a ton of opportunities for every new business owner, and it’s a great idea to use the tools out there. For example – they mentioned WordPress. This website (and nearly all of our websites) are built by Web Professionals using WordPress. It’s a great tool. They also mentioned “Low Cost Hosting Provider, GoDaddy”.
This suggestion rankled me a bit, as I don’t know that the BDC should be promoting a gigantic, low-cost, American-based provider. There are plenty of Canadian Hosting companies (us, for instance!) But that’s just my personal bias. A personal bias on a business Blog? Absolutely. I have been a Web Professional long enough to intelligently say that there are lots of hosting options. GoDaddy is one of them – and might be right for you. However, should the BDC be promoting them? I don’t personally think so, not when there are so many Canadian companies with Web Professionals that can help find the perfect hosting solution for you.
I am also skeptical of the low-cost online solution. While they’re getting better by the day, and they are definitely low-cost – this is your business. As a smart business person, you’re going to want to make sure you see a good return on your investment. You’re going to want to ensure you spend wisely. But you’re investing in your business and your web presence is not the place to cut corners and high-volume, low-cost providers simply don’t provide the level of service that a smaller company can. As a Web Professional, we can give you the service and advice you need to make the most of your web presence.
It’s a fairly well accepted statistic that 80% of businesses fail in their first 18 months. Google it if you like, I can’t remember where I last read it. 🙂
So, while I get that you may want to reduce your start-up costs – I don’t think you want to have your “www.freewebsite.mynewbusiness.com/sub-page” type website as your online presence.
There are ways to portray your business professionally online that don’t cost a fortune, and lots of tools available to help Business Professionals.
So while you’re starting your business, and you’re meeting with your lawyer, your accountant, building your supply network, building your marketing plan – take some time to meet with a Web Professional. It might be that there’s a low-cost solution to your online presence – or it might be an area you can invest in properly and give your business the best possible chance of being successful. I’ve looked into most of them and can help you choose the best solution for your business – why not take advantage of that?