SOWPub Small Business Forums  

Click Here to see the latest posts!

Ask any questions related to business / entrepreneurship / money-making / life
or share your success stories (and educational "failures")...

Sign up for the Hidden Business Ideas Letter Free edition, and receive a free report straight to your inbox: "Idea that works in a pandemic: Ordinary housewife makes $50,000 a month in her spare time, using a simple idea - and her driveway..."

Also, please no insults or personal attacks.
Feel free to link to your web site though at the end of your posts.

Stay up to date! Get email notifications or
get "new thread" feeds here


Go Back   SOWPub Small Business Forums > Main Category > Original SOWPub Forum Archive
Register FAQ Members List Calendar Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read

Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Prev Previous Post   Next Post Next
Old November 19, 2000, 09:04 PM
Posts: n/a
Default Article on resistance of small businesses

>In my post below I meant to share an
article about some of the apprehensions
of small businesses to getting a website
and note also the comment about websites
and local business development..
this is the article:,1323,10098_243871,00.html

Hi Sandy!

> If there's one thing I do enjoy, it's a good
> discussion like this one... which is my way
> of saying thanks for posting. : )

> The first part of your question is almost
> two questions, or perhaps two answers, so
> I've divided it in half..

> In a sense, the root of the problem (in my
> humble opinion) is the same thing that's the
> root of the problem for many things. Money.
> You would think that with the proliferation
> of ecommerce companies out there, that there
> would be an abundance of information to help
> the business owner, right? Not so. You see,
> the ecommerce companies want to make
> "their" sale.. and often at the
> cost of the bottom line to the consumer.

> Here's a prime example. I had a design
> client come to me because his site
> "didn't work." He wasn't making
> sales. The first thing I did was test run
> his ecommerce system by making a
> "dummy" purchase using a test
> credit card number. The cart was slow, took
> over 5 clicks to get to the point where a
> purchase could be made, and was hard to
> navigate. I asked him if he was open to
> changing to a new shopping cart. He replied
> that after signing up for his merchant
> account, he was told that "this"
> was the only shopping cart that was
> compatable with his merchant gateway.

> I know of at least two merchant account
> companies that pull this garbage. They make
> it "easy" to qualify... sign up
> the client for a 6-12 month term - and
> *then* comes the fun. "Oh.. you need a
> shopping cart? We didn't realize that. Well,
> we do have one that works with our gateway.
> It's *x* number of dollars to purchase
> outright or "y" number of dollars
> to lease per month.

> It's pretty scummy... but it happens all the
> time. And - while it makes the sale for the
> ecommerce company, it sure doesn't educate
> the business owner very well. In addition,
> it puts the business owner in the mindset of
> "once burned, twice shy".

> I wish I coulc tell you that most designers
> educate their customers. Sadly, it's not
> true.
> You see, with the arrival of html tools, a
> lot of "designers," armed with
> their software, have hung their shingle out
> without having the first clue about how to
> develop a business.. which, in essence, is
> what we do when we develop a website.

> I had a lawyer email me in a panic one day.
> She'd paid handsomely to have her site
> developed and was ecstatic with it. Until a
> client told her that the page had huge white
> (blank) spaces in it - and was missing
> information when loaded in the
> "other" browser.

> Then there's the story of the company who
> bought a series of ads in a huge publication
> (with over 22 thousand subscribers) ..
> blissfully unaware that their site loaded in
> only ONE version of ONE browser.

> Then there is the website design company
> that contacted me for consultation about why
> no one was signing up for their newsletter.
> I went to check it out and asked "what
> newsletter?" The designer replied
> "You know... the one in the popup that
> loads when you load the main page"
> Turns out the popup only worked in Netscape
> 4.x.
> Considering that 75% of the net is now using
> some version of IE, and some of the
> remaining Netscape users are using 6.0 - is
> it any wonder?

> I could go on and on.. but the sad fact is
> that finding a website developer that knows
> how to build a business (not just design a
> site) and also knows what "works"
> on the internet is as rare as the proverbial
> needle in a haystack.

> *smiling* It tells me that we humans still
> like and need entertainment... that a smile
> is still a welcome addition to every day and
> that laughter is good for the soul. Heaven
> forbid that should ever change. Even when we
> "work" we need to be able to feel
> good about it and have something to laugh
> about.

> Do you know what I really think, Sandy? Your
> comments about your co-workers reminded me
> of a situation that happened about 20 years
> ago when I was working in the corporate
> jungle. Being in management in Canada's
> largest retail chain, it was often my
> responsibility to oversee staff training or
> assigning someone to handle relevant
> training. We brought in computerized cash
> registers... one of the first stores in town
> to get them. I remember one sweet little
> lady.. she was about mid 40's then .. coming
> to me and asking me if I would demote her
> and assign her a position in the store
> cafeteria cleaning tables or washing dishes.
> I was stunned and asked her why. She said
> she did not want to learn to use the cash
> registers. I promised her that it would be
> just fine and she would learn them along
> with everyone else. No, no, she insisted,
> she did not want to. I took the lady for
> coffee and we had a heart to heart. She was
> crying as she told me that she was sure she
> was going to make a mistake and mess up and
> wreck the machine. Then - she got to the
> heart of the matter... and told me that she
> was afraid she would find out that she was
> too stupid to learn it, and that it was
> better not to try.

> I made the lady a promise. I told her I'd
> personally train her myself and stand by her
> side until she told me she didn't need me
> there if only she would try it. She did. I
> don't know which of us was prouder when she
> told me she didn't need me to stand there
> anymore.

> I really think that a lot of people are
> intimidated by this "new" medium.
> They don't know if it's "safe" and
> they don't know what to think of
> "privacy" issues... they are out
> of their element in a sense, so they revert
> to familiar ground... the telephone.

> That's why they "dont want to get
> it.." - we humans, as a whole, have a
> tendency to gravitate to the familiar. It's
> the rare few that embrace change with
> excitement.

> As for the media, I don't know that they
> have failed to inform the public so much as
> perhaps many of them aren't any more sure of
> it than many of your co workers. There are a
> couple of media people that have great
> knowledge about the Internet and I see their
> articles regularly at Salon Magazine and
> Clickz... but on the whole, I think a lot of
> the media "doesn't get it" either.

> Then again, perhaps it's deeper than that.
> Perhaps it's that the media is writing for
> their target audience, and their target
> audience "doesn't get it" so they
> write at a comprehension level that the
> public can and will understand. You know, I
> think I might put that question out to some
> media contacts. : )

> I agree. In a sense, it boils down to the
> same situation as the ecommerce companies.
> Every portal site wants the numbers.. they
> need them to get the advertisers. Their
> concept is good.. their follow through isn't
> so good. In a sense, many of them are
> learning what works as they implement it.
> Trial and error.. and the small business
> that follows the advice given during the
> trial and error phase ends up paying the
> price.

> In a sense, yes. Not intentionally. I don't
> think anyone can learn "how" it
> works without actually doing it. A tarde
> journalist isn't depending on their website
> to provide their income. They are relying on
> information provided by third party
> resources... by interviewing this person or
> that. If the information they are given
> isn't accurate, they don't know that because
> their paycheck does not depend on it.

> The person being interviewed often wants the
> publicity, so they say what they say for
> their own reasons.

> The sheer number of "marketing
> gurus" that spew garbage amazes me..
> and journalists print it.. and people read
> it and follow it.. and who pays the price?
> The small business person that followed
> erroneous advice because they thought it was
> the right thing to do.

> (I think I need to start a thread on good
> advice versus bad advice... *laughing*)

> You're very welcome... and thanks again for
> posting..

> Sincerely,
> Linda Caroll

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

vB code is On
Smilies are Off
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On
Forum Jump

Other recent posts on the forum...

Seeds of Wisdom Publishing (front page) | Seeds of Wisdom Business forum | Seeds of Wisdom Original Business Forum (Archive) | Hidden Unusual Business Ideas Newsletter | Hotsheet Profits | The Art of Leverage | The Success Report | Persuade via Remote Influence | Affia Band | The Entrepreneur's Hotsheet | The SeedZine (Entrepreneurial Ezine) | The Fly Low Collect Dough Update Hotline

Get the report on Harvey Brody's Answers to a Question-Oriented-Person

All times are GMT -4. The time now is 03:53 PM.

Powered by vBulletin Version 3.6.0
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.