A guy who owns a small business asked me what he should
put on their company’s website. He wanted to make sure they included the right
information for their customers but not too much. My response was this:
“Publish everything that won’t get you in trouble.”
If you’re on the Web, you’re there for a reason. It’s either to attract new
customers or serve existing customers. If you’re not trying accomplish either
The Web is all about information and easy access to it.
The way to attract new customers and serve existing ones using the Web is by
providing them information and easy access to it. So, for new customers, you
give them everything that will help them find you, trust you and make an
informed decision to become your customer.
For existing customers you provide what they need to best utilize your
product or service to meet their needs. Maybe it’s product information or
shipping data. Maybe it’s support and service help or maybe its detailed
“how-to” educational information. Figure out what your customers want in the
context of the Web and give it to them.
The less you put out there the less you’ll be able to attract new customers
and help existing ones. It’s like driving a car on two tires instead of four.
Let the Web work for you by using it the way it’s meant to be used.
To be Safe, Build a Process
If you hesitate or have doubts about publishing something on your website
then stop and get a second opinion. To be safe, build a process that filters
your content. Include your staff and maybe some customers and vendors. Get their
help in establishing guidelines. Then update these regularly.
But above all, know why you’re putting information on the Web before you do
it. Your purpose will drive your execution. Have a clear purpose and stick with