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Jan 29, 2001
Interview

Tom Antion Warns Big Business not to Overestimate Small Business People's Internet Savvy

SUMMARY: No summary available.
While leading educational seminars for the Main Streets Online program last year, speaker Tom Antion admits although he's a small businessperson himself, he was somewhat surprised by the very basic nature of many attendees' questions about the Internet. "These small business owners were experts in their fields, but a lot of them don't even know how to use their email effectively yet. They are busy with payroll and various crises, learning how to use email is the last thing on their minds." Antion notes these are not remotely stupid people -- just people who are far too busy with other things to spend time on anything non-essential.

Questions Antion encountered from small businesspeople during his Main Streets tour included items like, "What is a URL?" and "Are my Web page and my Web site the same thing?" Therefore he advises, "Big business has to make it extremely easy for these people. A lot of techies think like techies -- you've got to come down to small businesses level. The bottom line is how can you make things as basic as possible."

Antion praises Intuit as the big business that is best at this task both online and off. "Intuit's ease-of-use, back-up customer service and speed really impress me. They are doing a great job for busy small businesspeople."

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