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Marketwatch: Online

Using the Internet, there is so much more you can do to enhance your business beyond just a simple Web site.

As the Internet continues to pervade nearly every aspect of our personal and business lives, there's often a lag between the time that new Web tools and toys become available and when we actually put them to optimal use. That's certainly the case with the adoption of online capabilities by pro AV system integrators, consultants, and even manufacturers. Not surprisingly, most (nine out of 10) responding companies said they do have a Web site and almost half also publish an e-newsletter. But beyond that, the Web is clearly not being used to its greatest potential to enhance the businesses of the pro AV community. This was found to be true regardless of company size, vertical market focus, or region of the country. One parameter, however, did change relative to company size — among the larger companies in our survey sample (greater than $20 million revenue), 68 percent of them publish an e-newsletter, compared to only 35 percent of companies with less than $20 million in annual revenues. Cause or effect?

Even more surprising was the lack of knowledge among respondents regarding their own internal Web activities — many questions were met with a surprising number of “I don't know” responses. The e-tools are available, as is the expertise to properly develop them — let's use them!

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