Do you know what totally drives me? What makes me tick? Small business owners! The unbelievably hard working, passionate, dedicated, intelligent, creative and forward thinking small business owners, and their teams, that we get to work and collaborate with every day.
I get so excited at the opportunity to work with someone who needs our help to get their business online. It’s not just a website I get excited about – it’s learning about who they are, how they got there, what they do to open the doors every day and how they make their dreams a reality by running a small business. I know they need to run their business, just like I do. I know they are up late at night or in the wee hours of the morning, because their minds can’t stop thinking about ways to grow and succeed. I know they want to use the internet and a web presence to make their business even better, but they don’t have the time and resources to do it themselves – they are trying to help their customers too. An opportunity to help another small business succeed is what fuels my passion!
And boy does it seem like behind every small business owner is a unique and special person, who has a one-of-a-kind story. I find so much value and joy in getting to know each person and the path they have traveled to get where they are. If I could just tell you the stories I hear, the life lessons and experiences I get to talk with these amazing people about – let me tell you, it’s what makes me tick and keeps me going. It’s what makes me want to provide opportunities for my children and family too. I want to learn more, I want to be better, I want to provide the best services so we can all succeed together.
Lately, I’ve been thinking about all of the people I’ve had the chance to get to know and work with over the years. I’m so grateful for the people we work with, not as much the services we do. Sure I’m proud of our websites and services we provide, but it’s so much more important to me when I make a new friend and get to help with a tiny piece in watching them live out their dreams.
I’ve been doing website design for 15 years now (what? 15 years? where does time go?!) and I love it more now than ever before. I love the opportunities the internet brings to people just like me. I love that we, small businesses out here in rural America, can grow and serve our customers, doing something we love. And I love that we can do this because other people care enough to shop, buy and work with us too.
Creating New Business Adventures Online
This past month we worked with a local bakery in Southwest Minnesota (in a town of 1,132) to launch a new website. I had the opportunity to meet the owner, Scott, and a few of his team members and try his amazing baked goods. We launched a website for his business, which he has owned for 20+ years, because people have have been asking for their award-winning Almond Patties and other bakery items to be sent right to their door.
I’m so excited they chose to take the leap and get their business online. Yes it might take some time to grow their traffic and online sales, but I know that word spreads fast in a small town and I’m excited for the future of their business and this new online adventure. And I will selfishly be able to get those Almond Patties delivered to my door too!
Convenience and Shopping, Even When Your Doors Are Not Open
The bakery making the decision to provide their products for sale online is a great reminder to everyone with a small business, that you too, can offer your products and services online. It’s a good reminder that your customers want convenience and shopping, even when your doors are not open. In a time where we’re up against the big box stores, take a look at what value you provide to your clients and how you can extend that value through your website and online presence. Now is the time for small, local businesses to think about the “same day delivery” model. You too can provide the convince of online shopping and same day delivery in your local area!
Shop Local, Grow Local
As Small Business Saturday approaches and we’re in a Black Friday frenzy, I’ll always try and shop locally first, to get those items we “need”. Because that’s what Small Business Saturday and shopping local, whenever possible, is all about to me – the opportunities to work with amazing small business owners and their employees, who are dedicated to serving their customers, every day – right here where I live. I hope you’ll join in and remember to support local businesses whenever you can too!
Thank you to all of the business owners, employees and team members I’ve had the opportunity to work with and get to know! You’re a true inspiration – keep doing what you do!