Establishing an online identity

Don't let technology intimidate you from boosting your company's customer base

If you haven't done so, it is time to take your business to the next level and focus on an online presence. The Internet has taken another step forward as a communication tool for businesses, and if you don't join the online community now, you will miss a pivotal opportunity for your company. Although this may seem like a daunting concept if you have not yet fully explored opportunities on the Internet, making an effort toward creating or improving your company's website and online marketing can positively affect your company.

During a study conducted in 2011 by my company, 1&1 Internet Inc., Chesterbrook, Pa., of which 2,000 U.S. adults were surveyed, we found 35 percent of customers don't choose companies with poor websites or those lacking an online presence. Unfortunately, small-business owners often are overwhelmed by the idea of creating a website and lose opportunities to lure new customers online.

Web hosting is a growing industry that focuses on various tools for using the Internet to fit different budgets, skill sets and strategies. For business owners and service providers who still are offline because they find the idea of marketing on the Internet and/or creating a website intimidating, it is time to explore different avenues for growth and success.

Why the Web is important