by: Scott Lindsay
The best role of business online is that of interdependency. We’ve all heard the old saying, “No man is an island.” When it comes to online business this is especially true. If a business owner who takes their business into the online world determines they will be self reliant and never accept the help of anyone then that individual will not be in business long enough to change their minds. It is accepted fact that the greatest tool for long-term exposure to your website is through Search Engine Optimization (SEO). Without it potential customers can’t find you. It is unreasonable to expect that you can adequately develop a website without optimizing your website for the best possible search engine ranking. Search engines also place a high value on sites that have links placed on existing sites. These ‘backlinks’ demonstrate to search engines that others trust your site. By placing your link on their website these other businesses indicate a trust and recommendation for your site. In effect the two strategies listed above rely exclusively on what others can do for you when it comes to your online business. Shirley Temple once proclaimed in her movie Rebecca of Sunnybrook Farm, “I’m very self-reliant.” American westerns are filled with lines dealing with pulling yourself up by your bootstraps and holding down the fort. Many of us have grown up to believe if we want something done right we have to do it ourselves. This thinking is in opposition to the rules associated with an online business. The online world can only exist because people share. Individuals share technology, but the also share links, reviews, blogs, forums and a wide range of other marketing strategies that find a commingling of interdependency. In online business you are as dependent on others as they may be on you. Unlike the word ‘dependent’, the term interdependent indicates a mutual dependency. In other words you are depending on others to help provide links back to your site while they are equally dependent on you (or others) for the success of their business. Have you really taken a proactive approach to networking? It’s possible you are reading this today and you’ve never considered asking someone else to place a link to your site on his or her online business site. It can feel awkward depending on others to achieve online success especially if you’ve been lead to believe reliance on others is also a sign of imposing on their otherwise brilliant generosity. I suppose it could be a deep-seated sense of pride that makes it hard to consider the need to ask others for help. However, the truth is depending on others is really what has made the Internet possible. The growth of this online world is comprised of a link of computers, networks and servers that are connected in a way that provides the maximum benefit for all. Building an online business can feel a bit like trying to build a house of cards. Without the ability to rely on the other ‘cards’ around you it is virtually impossible to build. Interdependence. This is the essence of online business.