Top 5 Reasons Why Business Owners Don’t Take Their Businesses Online
These days everyone and everything is online — presidents, shops and restaurants, governments, even your grandparents. Only your business is still sticking to the traditional, old-school way of operating, away from social media. But is that actually good for it, or are you missing out on a large new pool of customers?
Taking your business online comes with numerous benefits, the biggest one being precisely those new clients who wouldn’t find your services otherwise. Despite that, many business owners refuse to take this final step, thus limiting their own potential. Why are they doing that, though? There are several reasons — so let’s take a look at some of the most common ones.
1. Fear of Failure and People Judging You
Trying something new and putting yourself out there is always scary, often even terrifying. You might feel like you don’t know what’s waiting for you, and thus, you’re doomed to fail. Then, your failure will be out there for everyone to see, comment on, and make fun of. And that will, inevitably, lead to feelings of embarrassment and shame.
Even if you don’t fail, once you join an online platform, you open yourself up to criticism. You’re worried that you’ll receive negative comments and rude emails, that people will attempt to expose you as a fraud, or otherwise try to ruin what you’ve created. And that thought alone is enough to prevent you from even trying.
In a way, it makes sense — it’s far more comfortable sticking to what you know and what you’re good at. But at the same time, a comfort zone never lets you grow and reach your full potential. You’ll never know what your business could become if you don’t try pushing it further. And failure, no matter how scary it may seem, is always worse in your head than in reality.
2. Fear of Negative Reviews
Social media allows a free flow of thoughts and opinions — positive and negative. Once your business goes online, you can expect to encounter both of these, and that might be scary. After all, reading a comment that criticizes your business and services (often in colorful terms) can hurt. It usually feels quite personal too.
But consider this — even when you’re not online, your clients can discuss your business, praise it, and criticize it. The only difference is that you aren’t able to see it and participate in the conversation. Thus, you live in ignorance, which might seem like bliss, but is actually detrimental to your business.
So instead, take control of the conversation. Take your business online and be open to criticism and feedback. Show your customers that you care about their opinions and want to answer their questions. That way, you’ll quickly build a loyal client base, which will spread the word about you far and wide.
3. Fear of Success
Fear of failure is pretty easy to understand, but what about fear of success? Those who’ve never felt it might find it a bit ridiculous. But think of it this way — you have your business with its small but loyal customer base. Then you decide to go online, and suddenly, hundreds of people show interest. You’ve hit a real jackpot, right?
Well, yes, but you might start worrying that you don’t have the skills or capabilities to satisfy that many customers. That brings a whole new host of fears — that dissatisfied clients will ruin your reputation, and everything you worked so hard for will disappear.
But remember — to become that successful, you must be doing something right. That means that you definitely have the skills, and now you just need careful planning and determination. No one’s ever really ready to be on top — but if you find yourself there, you might as well make the most of it.
4. You Don’t Know Where to Start
If you haven’t used social media for your business so far, the whole feat might seem impossible to you. How do you even start? What should you post about? How to attract the right audience that will eventually turn into clients?
You may feel like you can’t take your business online before you have the answers to all these questions. But actually, many smaller companies that have successful online platforms started just like you — not really knowing that much. The important thing is to take that first step, and you will learn as you go. Or, if you feel that you don’t have the time, you can hire an expert in the online marketing field.
Now, if you want to have some prior knowledge before you take that leap of faith, examine other online businesses. See what they are posting about and what image they are projecting into the world. You may even ask another experienced entrepreneur to give you advice. After all, who knows more than someone who’s already taken their business online?
5. Your Business Is Fine As It Is
Why would you go online if your business is thriving already? Surely making an online platform for it can’t change things that much, right?
As satisfied as you might be with your business’ results, there’s always room for improvement. And though you may not be aware of it, you’re losing a lot by not taking it online. In fact, shops with an online presence have 32% more sales than those without it! That’s certainly not a small advantage.
Not to mention that things can go south quite fast. Just look at what happened during the pandemic — so many formerly successful businesses suffered terrible losses or had to shut their doors. But not those that managed to adapt and join online platforms — they survived, and many are thriving!
A pandemic is, of course, an extreme situation. But who’s to say it will never happen again? So play it safe and join countless other businesses that went digital!
If you really look, you’ll always find some reason not to take your business online. It’s too scary, you’re not ready, you’re happy with the way things are — all this and so much more. But instead of looking for excuses, force yourself to take that first step. Yes, it is uncomfortable at first, but eventually, the benefits will far outweigh everything else!