The thumbnail version:

  • Email addresses say something about the business’s professionalism.

The full version:

I received some good advice many years ago when business went online and email became a thing. Allow me to pass it on.

The advice assumes that you have a website in your business’s name—a fundamental requirement for any business if it is to be taken seriously in today’s market place. So, assuming you have a business website, the advice is to take the next step in the construction of a serious business image by having your email address reflect your web site address. This might sound a bit frivolous but, unfortunately, it’s how things work.

I believe that in order to compete, small businesses must display a degree of professionalism that allows them to compete with the carefully-crafted images of larger businesses. I’m not advocating that small businesses portray themselves as big businesses because there’s no disgrace to being a small business (in fact, there are many advantages) but customers are more comfortable with confidence-inspiring professionalism. So, back to your email address and what it does to convey a serious business-like impression . . .

You decide which of these fictional* email addresses are more likely to inspire confidence and which make the business look a bit rinky-dink:

A1 Signs and Shirts

A1 Signs and Shirts

Signs 4U            

Signs 4U            

Hotmail and Gmail email addresses are widely used, and that’s fine for personal purposes, but not for your business. You don’t want people to wonder how established and serious your business is if it apparently can’t afford a few bucks for a business-like image. This includes something seen many times a day by many people—your email address.

I think you get it.

* The business names and email addresses used above are fictional. If they resemble real-life names and addresses, it is purely coincidental.