7 Things you should know before starting your website
It is a well-known fact that every business needs a website to be successful in this day and age. For many, this is hard to face because a lot of people simply don’t have the skills to build one themselves. You do have the option, of course, of paying a developer to do this for you and paying freelancers to load your site up with the appropriate content. The costs associated with these services keep this option out of reach for many new start-ups and small business owners, however, and truthfully, even when people have this done for them, their website remains unsuccessful. That’s primarily because people don’t really know what they need starting out.
The fact of the matter is that the work involved with building a successful website should be done upfront. There are 7 steps that need to be taken before you should begin building a website or even start to have one built for you. If you already have a website, the information to follow may help you to realize why your website isn’t as successful as it could be. Either way, by just reviewing the following steps, you will be able to save yourself tons of time, money, and frustration in trying to make your website work for you as it should.
The 7 steps are:
- Identify goals and understand your target audience
First things first, identify the purpose of the website. Understand and establish your business and communication goals. What is your website for? Who is it for? What are your customers or visitors looking for? Try to understand your target market. What nationalities are they? What are their position? What’s their interest/focus? Are they tech-savvy or conservative?
Next, do your research. Look around and see what you like – or equally important – dislike about the websites in your field. Consider their design, layout and functionalities.
- What Do You Want to Accomplish?
The most important issue is differentiate between features you NEED and features you WANT. Are these features all necessary? What will you get out of them? Can we implement them in phases? Features that websites generally have include Booking engine, Enquiry form, E-commerce function, Payment integration, Social media feed and CRM integration. It’s great to think ahead but do you need all of these? Will you be able to manage it? What we want customers to understand is that a website should serve as a tool to empower your business and marketing efforts rather than limiting your capabilities because it’s too complex to manage. We never encourage customers to implement functions they do not need because it is not worth their investment.
- You Get What you pay For
Speaking of sticking to your web design budget, it’s worth noting that you do get what you pay for in today’s world, but that doesn’t mean that you should choose the developer with the highest price just because they’re expensive. When you’re looking for the right person or team to come and manage your website for you, make sure that you do your research. Take a look at the company’s portfolio, and make sure that you like what you see before you commit to paying anything.
- Know your Brand
Your website is an integral part of your brand, and it’s going to help you for years to come when you’re trying to attract new customers and develop your reputation. With that in mind, you need to know what kind of image you want to have before you start designing. Choose your domain name carefully, using the name of your business in the URL if you can.
While you’re planning your website, think about where you can put your logo, how you can design your site to look as attractive as possible, and what kind of brand colours you’re going to use to capture the attention of your target audience.
- Patience is Key
While we all want to start a website and begin seeing success overnight, it’s important to remember that online success takes time – particularly in this highly competitive marketplace. Even when you think your website looks perfect, it will take a while before you start attracting customers and converting them into loyal fans. Stay dedicated, and you’ll get there eventually.
- How Will You Promote Yourself?
Finally, just because you take the time to build and publish a stunning website, doesn’t mean that visitors will automatically find their way there. When you’ve set your site up to go live, you’ll need to think about how you’re going to market yourself. People aren’t going to find your website automatically, and your SEO won’t kick in without a little help. Think about how you can develop your identity as quickly as possible through a range of solutions like social media marketing, content marketing, SEO and more.
Let’s get the ball rolling!
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