When I listen to people talk about how to use the Internet for their business, I often hear the same logic that doomed the Internet in the 90's. That logic? Viewing the Internet as "The" channel and not "A" channel. Many potentially great companies died due to this thinking.
The Internet is a channel for business and while it has many great positive attributes, it is not the only channel and your customer base knows that. Look at ecommerce. You would think that would have taught us something since shopping should be an easy habit to change and influence, but ecommerce, while very big, is still only a relatively small piece of the shopping pie. People still go to malls, shop through catalogs, shop through mail order and the like.
The point? Remember that the Internet is only a channel and your customer base has more than likely gotten the services and/or products you are selling before the Internet arrived and therefore has no problem using a channel other than the Internet. Have at least one other method for clients to buy from you. Whether it's a telephone number, fax number, or actual people walking the pavement. Add another channel, because the Internet is not "The" channel, it's only "a" channel. It is then that you will trly reap the benfits of the power of the Internet to bring channels together.
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