A Virtual Business I Would Start

I'm always shocked to see the number of service-based businesses in my city that lack websites. Often, all they have is a Google My Business listing, where the 'website' tab sometimes links only to a Facebook page, or not to anything at all.

Whenever I'm genuinely looking for services, such as an electrician to come and install a power point, an air conditioning technician, or even a pest control company (yes, all recent experiences), I'm reluctant to call up a business that doesn't have an official website.

I know this is in no way an accurate depiction of whether they're qualified for the job or not, but to me, it's just a red flag and an almost instant no. I feel like a website is a window into the world of that business, and if someone doesn't think their own business deserves a website, then I feel like they don't deserve my business.

I have to imagine many other people share this sentiment, and I imagine that doesn't bode well for "Pete's Painting."

If I had the time to start another virtual business, this is absolutely the first market I would go after: busy tradespeople who wish they had a website but don't even know where to start. But I would not ask for permission! These people are busy. Between quoting new jobs and invoicing the completed ones, ordering materials, and actually doing the work, they don't have time to jump on a call with you and see what kind of website they'd want you to build for them and listen to you blabber on about a bunch of terminology they don't even understand.

Just do the work. Build them a site.

Use a dead-simple and ultra-fast website builder like Carrd to display the services they offer and make it effortless for customers to contact them.

If they already have Google reviews, use them on the website.

If they have photos posted on Google or Facebook, use them on the website.

Make it in a way that when they see it, they're going to think, "Wow, they've really gone all out on this."

Then send them an email, a text message, and a direct message on social media (all at once!) to make sure they see it. With a subject that will catch their attention like, "I Built You a Website for Pete's Painting."

Explain to them how you and many others turn away when they realize a business doesn't have a website.

And then ask them for $500.

Put yourself in their shoes. They haven't had to mess around with finding the right person or spending any time explaining what they want. This incredible website is just delivered right to their inbox, already functioning. They don't want it to just disappear.

If I did this for 100 businesses, I think I'd get enough sales to justify the effort. I also think enough of them would end up wanting nicer, more feature-rich websites eventually and turn into much higher-ticket, longer-term customers.

I also think it could open many interweaving streams that you could not anticipate beforehand.

This is an example of a virtual business I would love to start.

It will cost you time on your computer, but no physical world restrictions like getting a lawnmower to the customer's house or being at a specific place at a specific time.


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