Many small firms’ work and investment in websites could be undermined very quickly by poor URL choices, as one in four men and one in five women who use SME websites regularly struggle with web addresses that are difficult to recall.
The choice of URL becomes even more important for entrepreneurs who target younger groups, as new research reports that one in three consumers in the 16-35 year group judge the SME domains they use to be “unattractive”.
“The data suggests that many small businesses undervalue the effect their web address can have on their consumers’ behaviour,” says Steve Holford, marketing director at Streamline.net, the web hosting company that conducted the survey.
A further poll of 189 small UK firms showed that whilst 34 per cent were not happy with their web sales, only three per cent were considering making any chance to their primary domain name.
“There is a real danger their work and investment on the web can be undermined by the simple fact that consumers cannot remember their URL,” says Holford, adding that with 70 per cent of Britons willing to conduct business with SMEs via the web, the ability for a consumer to easily recall a web address has never been so important.
Graham Jones, an internet specialist who advises businesses on how to connect with consumers, believes the key is to have a URL that people can easily remember and pass on to others.
“If a page is quite important for your business, then nothing really beats having a specific domain name that is easy for people to remember, that can then be linked to your company’s other sites as necessary.”
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