I believe that any business will benefit from having a website. I have worked with internet marketing for many years, and I have seen that people feel like a business has “validity” when they have a website. I do not do this commercially, however it is a passion and hobby of mine. I have created many websites.One main point is that it should not cost a fortune to have a website. An excellent one page site and maybe a contact page is easy to accomplish. Microsoft Office Live http://www.officelive.com/ is offering a free domain and hosting for one year, as well as providing an easy way to create your own website without any experience.Keep it simple is an adage that works well here. People need to only know the vital information about your business. IE: Cuisine, address, contact info, reviews, etc.There are many ways to promote yourself on the internet. One example is the last restaurant that I owned. Go to google and type in: hot dog charlotte My place is the first that comes up. City Hot Dogs, or my site www.cityhotdogs.com .. My site is still active, however it tells my friends in Charlotte that I have relocated to Atlanta! I would be glad to assist anyone who wants to increase their presence on the internet if you currently have a site. Any GRA member is welcome to contact me, and we can meet at my office for 30 minutes and I will provide you with enough information and simple tips to get you started, at no charge! I will provide this information on a personal basis, but not publish it here, because I support the small business folks who are making their living doing this type of work while supporting the restaurant industry.If you don’t have the time to make your own site, look at the GRA website buyers guide and you will find great resources to create a website for you, and these people can help you optimize your site to be found on the search engines. I would highly suggest that you use one of the GRA partners to do you site. The main thing that you have with these folks is personal contact. Every day, every restaurant receives solicitation phone calls (especially during lunch hour, don’t they know they are calling a restaurant!!!) and many big companies try to sell you a site for more than 250.00 per month. Once your site is up, their job is done. Spend your money wisely, and preferably with a local designer who knows their stuff (and preferably a supporter of GRA)So, in summary, Yes, in my experience, a website is important, however, it does not have to cost an arm and a leg!
Doug MarranciAtlanta Restaurant ExchangeRestaurant Brokers Atlanta GeorgiaWe sell restaurants in Atlanta and the Atlanta Metro Area