Friday, October 28, 2016

"Our Website Address Is More Important Than Our Street Address"

We might have a very prestigious business address - in a well-known office building, on a well-traveled street, or a road known for having contractors or design professionals located along it. Maybe it's a great address, such as 1000 or with the road the same name as part of our business name. 

Possibly we are located in a business park or plaza where well-known businesses are found so we have a credibility just for being in the same area.

We might have a home-based business.

Where we are physically located - even in an executive suite set of offices or a virtual office location - is not particularly important unless we need to visible to the public so that they can physically come to us.

Nevertheless, we need to have a much more important address - a website or domain name - for people to find.

Even at that, it doesn't need to be a name that becomes a household word, one that is so descriptive or what we do that no one else can have a better domain name, or one that is a marketing gem. It just needs to be an address that people can use to find information about what we offer and contact us.

We do want to create and maintain our personal brand so that people will want contact and do business with us, and we want them to ask us to help them renovate their homes for them so they can remain living in them successfully as they age over time.

Therefore, we need to be ready for people to contact us, and that starts with having a website for them to find us.

A website is no longer a luxury. Every business has one. When a vacant lot or an empty building begins preparing for a new tenant, a "Coming Soon: sign goes up, and on that sign is always a website address, It used to be a phone number to call for information, but now it is a website because every business is expected to have one - and they do.

In a website address, we can use our name, the name of our business, or a small descriptor, but the main thing to keep in mind is that people need to remember it, to find it relatively easy to say and type, and not confuse it with similar sounding websites of others - in a related business or not.

If our website name has multiple repeating consonants or vowels - several of the same letter - or needs to be spelled for someone because it is unclear what we are saying or how it actually is spelled, we should choose a simpler name to use for our site. 

We want people to feel like they are visiting a professional site. Therefore, a "dot com" address is the best one to use. We are not a "dot net" or "dot org," and other extensions aren't as professional for us to use. We need to ask ourselves how we would feel looking for a business like ours when we typed in the name that we will be using as our domain address. Does it look or sound like a business or more like a hobby or casual pursuit?

Even if it will be a little while before actually launching the business, we should have and register a domain name now.

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Steve HoffackerCAPS, C.E.A.C., MCSP, MIRM, is a licensed Certified Aging-In-Place Specialist instructor and best-selling author of universal design books. To learn about this and other programs for aging-in-place or universal design, visit stevehoffacker.com or call 561-685-5555.