In business one of the first things we learn is that the three most important things about owning a business are; well you know. Ok. Just in case you need a refresher they are; Location, Location and, guess what, Location again. This is why Owners and Operators spend a lot of time doing traffic research, evaluating real estate for potential growth areas, and researching their target demographics before picking a location. Of course, businesses that don’t do the research have an uphill battle ahead of them and, most likely, will not make it. So what does this have to do with “Web Real Estate”? Actually…Everything.
The Webs’ Best kept Secret
One of the webs’ best kept secrets is the three most important things about owning a website and they are, drum roll please… What?, Location, Location, Location. Yep that’s it, and you might ask, “How can this be?” Think of it like this. The web is a collection of properties (websites) just like the real world, and the location of your property within search engines is what determines how much traffic you will see. Making it just as important to have the proper research done on the web landscape before launching a website to ensure a maximum return on investment.
Purchasing Web Real Estate
A question that might come to mind is; “The web has been around so long, how I can make sure I get a good location for my website?” And that is a good question. Much like in the real world, demolitions, renovations, and new office parks open providing an opportunity. In terms of the web, these opportunities present themselves as:
- Domain names that expire and are not renewed.
- New Domain name extensions (.Biz, .US).
- Search Engine Optimization (SEO).
- Graphic Design.
- Emerging Technologies (Blogs, Social Media, etc).
- Search Engine Changes (Focus on Local).
When an opportunity present itself you have to be ready. This is why it is critical to have a web management company on your side, looking out for your best interests, just like a Realtor or other professional. The web industry is just too complex to go it alone.
A Small Window of Opportunity
Right now the three major search engines Google, Yahoo and Bing along with other major web properties are beginning to shift their focus from being globally focused, to being more locally and globally focused. This means there is a small window of opportunity, (2 years or less), for businesses to purchase prime web real estate for low prices. Remember, web properties appreciate with age as long as they are maintained, making it much more expensive to try to renovate or buy those same properties in the future. It will still be possible to buy or replace these properties in the future, but it will be a lot much more expensive. Likely too expensive, for the average business owner.
In summary; Don’t make the common mistake many businesses do, and think that a website is purely an extension of your business when it should really be thought of as another location of your business. To truly build and maintain a web presence, don’t try to go it alone. A free website is simply not going to get it done. Lastly, take advantage of this prime market to capture a critical piece of real estate for your business and make it grow. It is an investment and will cost money. Remember, according to Google 82% of people looking for business services are doing so online, making it a good area to invest in to grow your business.
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