Dachia here. Welcome back to Focus on your Small Business.
I wanted to take a moment and give you some thoughts on platforms to build and platforms to build on. First, I encourage you to have a website. Even if a simple one-page ‘this is me’ site, I feel it’s important. You’ll use this as your hub. This is where you’ll send traffic and potential customers or clients.
That’s a platform to build. Now, Some of you could hire someone else to build this. But the people I’m talking to right now and in general are folks who are handling everything themselves. Or almost everything themselves.
These are people with a message, service or product that is very personal to them. They feel close to it. They care what happens to their business and their customers. They don’t want to add a bunch of team members with lots of fingers messing with their dream.
Now, these people might be members of the subscription service I offer where they can save many hours every single month in their online searching for what they need to do and how to do it. It’s a subscription of convenience.
Imagine somebody going to the store for you and doing all your grocery shopping and delivering them to your home. You meet them at the door and you put them all away.
Yes, you are very capable of doing your own grocery shopping. But you likely also have better things to do with your time.
Thus.. a subscription or membership of convenience.
I am a big supporter of taking advantage of tools that save you valuable time. There are loads of them, both free and paid. Some costs are tiny and some costs are not. Only you can determine if a particular tool is worthy of the cost, in how much time it saves you.
This leads me back to what I started with. In my opinion, you really do need a hub. A website or page to express yourself. A place to clearly state who you are and what you do.
You may have a facebook business page or a youtube channel… and that’s great. But I strongly urge you to think of those as support for your website. I am urging you to not build on rented land. And those platforms, all the social media sites: facebook, youtube, instagram. pinterest, twitter and google… and all the rest of them out there… are not yours. You can rent a little space there… but the lease can change at any time.
You DO need to be on those sites, whichever ones are a good fit for you and your customers… but none of them are home.
A few years ago, I heard a few horror stories of people who did not have a presence outside facebook. They had a group or a page there and when facebook changed their rules, and their algorithm… these folks lost everything.
Please please please take this to heart. Have your own website. Own your own domain name and theme and pay for hosting… all of that is your mortgage. Your own place. You can paint if you want. tear out a wall… have a dog… it’s yours. And everything you do there is an extension of you and your brand.
I’m going to keep coming back to this message because I feel it is so important.
Your website can be very simple. It can be one since page. You can use a free theme.
As a single small business owner myself I do understand the challenges of time and money. I want to help you to keep this as simple as possible.
Again, some of you are going to just hire somebody to build this for you. And that’s great. Whatever investment you can afford, I’m right there with you. Might be a pro charging few thousand dollars or your niece or neighbor doing it for some pizza. I get it.
Here is something I was to strongly urge you to do. Be part of the build. Look over their shoulder, give input, get familiar with the dashboard, just get your feet wet.
You don’t need to be an expert. But I do think you need to have at least a passing understanding of how your site works and how to make changes should you decide to.