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Does a client list on your website encourage client theft by your competitors?

Posted by Colleen Wainwright on

Ilise sent out an edition of the newsletter this week about the importance of having a client list on your business website. (You can read it here and subscribe here.)

A reader emailed her with a question we thought was a good followup, so we decided to post the Q&A here on the blog.


I have been told over and over to never have a client list. It allows your competitors to target your clients. Is this something to worry about? Is there a way around it?


I think it’s more important for your prospects to see who you’ve worked with than for your competitors not to see.

Plus, if your relationships are so flimsy that anyone finding a list of company names (we’re not including actual contact names, mind you) can steal your clients, you’ve got bigger problems.

Make sense?

I agree with Ilise: far better to make things easy for prospective clients than to worry about whether someone might troll your site for client leads. Besides, if you have a portfolio site up (I’m talkin’ to you, designers/illustrators/developers), they’re going to see your clients anyway!

But I wonder if we’re missing anything. Are there particular circumstances where it’s a bad idea to share your client list? Industries where discretion need be exercised?

Or are there other valid reasons not to divulge your list? I’m really curious to hear what you wizards think.

  • More in: Ask the Experts, Connecting, Posts by Colleen, Posts by Ilise, Web Marketing

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