The Porch Light copyright by Revka (2006-2010). All rights reserved.

Sunday, June 01, 2008

Which Do You Prefer - Internet or Yellow Pages?

Linda and I are constantly coming up with ideas for new products to offer at RS Designs. We will soon be offering custom business and blog cards (the blog cards are custom made to coordinate with your blog) and pre-made mommy cards (see picture at left).

Another new service we will be offering is business website setup. We will handle everything from start to finish. The package price includes our purchasing a domain name and hosting for a year, setting up the web site platform, creating the design, putting in the content, performing Search Engine Optimization, and submitting the completed web site to appropriate search engines and directories. While we are not yet offering this service through RS Designs, both Linda and I have approached a few local businesses to test the waters.

Here is what I am finding: despite the growth of the Internet, many businesses do not have even a simple one-page static website offering their location, business hours, and contact information. That means that they are missing out on potential customers. For example, a friend of mine recently recommended that I contact a local business regarding setting up a website because she searched for them on the Internet, wanting to find out their hours of operation, and came up with nothing.

I think I am a pretty average Internet user (ignore my blogs and my business - that's not what I mean). I think I conduct business searches on the Internet almost as much as I do through the yellow pages. If I need information or a non-local product, I am more likely to turn to the Internet - to find out about a diet pill, for instance, I would probably search for a diet pills review site. If, however, I want to find a local business, it is a toss-up whether I turn to the yellow pages or to the Internet.

So we finally reach the question asked in my title - which do you prefer: Internet or Yellow Pages?


DramaMama said...

I vote internet. Sometimes I go to the 'net first b/c I think their site might have more than just their hours, like maybe a sample menu or price list if it were a restaurant. Or maybe there are coupons or special activities listed. The library has their kids' activity calendar listed which is so helpful! Not that the library is boring, but the experience is definitely enhanced if there is story time or a musician! Plus, a lot of times a website is more up to date than the phone book. Sometimes businesses move or change their hours and the phone book stays the same. Good luck in your adventures talking w/businesses! said...

Okay, being a librarian who works part of my shift in our Tech Center, I prefer internet. Sure we get the people who want local numbers, and usually I'll say "Let me look in the phone book." because they are too lazy to do so for themselves. But, I would have never imagined the number of people who want out of town businesses, or out of state businesses. Plus they want more information about the business, and quite frankly, they expect us (librarians) to know it. It would be of great help to have a website with more than the basic information.

Good luck...I really hope this works out for you, I think it's a great idea!

Anonymous said...

You do understand that a poll online will give you a skewed answer, right?

Revka said...

Hey, Drama Mama!
Thanks for sharing your reasons for preferring the Internet. Those would make good selling points as I approach businesses. :)

Revka said...

Hi, Seeryus Mama! I didn't realize that you are a librarian. I think that is neat! I bet you have to answer a lot of dumb questions. :)

Thanks for sharing your experiences. More ideas for making my pitch. :)

And thank you to both you and Drama Mama for your well wishes. :)

Revka said...

Hey, Anon. Of course I understand that, but I'm not really looking for a poll. I was just curious to see what my friends/visitors thought.

As you can see from my previous comments, the input I have received thus far has provided me with additional answers I can give when business owners ask me why they need a website when they are already utilizing other means of advertising.

Thanks for your concern. Next time, don't be shy about leaving your name. I don't bite. :)

jeannie said...

I am so the internet..... who has time to look in the yellow pages? (LOL) better yet find ONE!!!!

Revka said...

I'm becoming more and more that way myself, Jeannie. :) All to often, I end up not finding what I need in the yellow pages.