I was driving through rural Nebraska recently with my wife Samantha on our way back to Oklahoma City. We were looking for a place to have dinner and saw a sign for an Indian restaurant at the next exit. Indian food perfectly met our dietary and hunger needs, so we exited and looked for the restaurant. With trepidation, we entered the restaurant, or, I should say, we entered the convenience store the restaurant shared space with. We were in the indecisive mode of “should we try this or bolt,” but decided to stay since the rest of our choices would be minimal for many miles. So we ordered food at the counter and went to sit down in one of the numbered booths (seriously, each booth had a number prominently displayed). We both immediately saw this after sitting down:
There was one of these in each booth. It was clear that this was a situation where, in days gone past, someone would have ordered dinner and then spent time on a public telephone while eating. Really?
I am not sure what the effort would be to remove these. They are clearly a vestige of a time gone past and have no purpose still being in this restaurant. Looking around, the restaurant was cluttered with boxes of supplies stacked in the customer seating area. The vibe was “this restaurant is old and not particularly nice looking,” and so there was increased concern on our part about the food we ordered.
The food was awesome. But how many people have come into that space and never gotten to the counter to order food just because of the vibe? We cannot discount people’s perceptions when they experience our brand. That goes for your online presence, too. If you created a website 10 years ago and have not upgraded it in any meaningful way, then you have the equivalent of ATT phone jacks hanging on your walls. Look at your physical and online presence using the eyes of potential customers and correct anything that gives the wrong impression.