The internet, along with new technology, is pushing the world forward. You could say that the internet has taken complete control of a significant portion of everyone’s life.
It’s a well-known fact that you can’t thrive without a website in today’s world of growing opportunities for online business. You’ll need a website to increase your online business audience and reputation. It’s the only way you can represent your business in front of the online world and minimize the risk of failure.
In this article, we’ll discuss the development of a website for small businesses. So, before you start working on your Website, there are few things that you need to keep in mind. Here are 10 things to do and consider when creating a small business website.
1. Establish the purpose of your website
A business website serves the purpose of providing general information about your company or as an eCommerce store. Whether you are creating a simple website that explains a bit about your company or an e-commerce store, the most important thing you must do is explain what your company does – in plain terms – on the homepage. Customers shouldn’t have to dig around to see if your company can meet their needs.
The first step is the one that most people find the most difficult. However, after you’ve gotten through this, you’ll have a great strategy in place that will act as the foundation for everything else. When people first start, one of the issues they have is not knowing what they want.
They see the need for a website and have a vague idea of what it should achieve, but they haven’t taken the time to plan out what they want to show the world about themselves and their business. As a result, you must do so before you start building your Website.
The goal of all of this is to create a successful website. You’ll need to think about who you are, what you’re passionate about, and what your company’s core values are to do this. How will you know what you need to create if you don’t know who you are? When you don’t clarify, it comes across to your Website visitors as a lack of clarity.
Remember that you’re delivering a message to your clients, customers, and visitors when you create a website. You can decide if the message is clear and professional or if it’s messy and confusing. It’s up to you.
Because a website is almost always the first point of contact between you and your customers, you must design it with great care. Because your Website is your most crucial marketing tool, you must conduct extensive research to ensure that it makes a positive first impression.
Check the websites of other pros in your field. Take notes on those whose style you appreciate and what it is about their layout and design that appeals to you. Before you start a web design project, consider who your target audience is.
What products does my business sell, and how do they benefit my target market? That’swhere design research comes into the picture. The most effective websites assist users in solving real-world issues, not those that are visually appealing. Website design research will assist you in coming up with intriguing and original ideas to engage your audience in unique ways.
3. Know your target market
Who are you aiming for, and who will most likely benefit from your product or service? And what you include on your Website will depend on the answer to this question. Statistics reveal, for example, that young men and women spend the great majority of their time watching YouTube videos.
That means that if your target audience comprises mainly younger consumers, you may be able to persuade them to interact with your site more effectively if you include more videos than written content. In other words, think about what your primary visitors enjoy and what will keep them on your site longer.
Make sure you get this right from the beginning because it will influence your theme, design, content, usability, networking efforts, and SEO (more on that later). In a nutshell, your target market is at the center of everything you do.
4. Domain name
One of the essential aspects of any website is its domain name. It’s the URL you’ll send to existing and new customers, as well as promote on social media. As a result, it should be descriptive and easy to remember and type in. To minimize customer confusion, keep it brief and eliminate abbreviations, acronyms, and numbers if at all possible.
Because good domain names are difficult to come by, they are pretty valuable. Your domain also represents who you are and provides you with the online branding you want.
Things to Consider:
- Keep your Domain name short & Simple
- To make it easier to find you, keep your domain name to one keyword.
Things to Avoid:
- Misspelled Domain Name
- Hyphenated Domani
5. Website hosting
Finding a secure server that will scale with your business as it grows is the next step in building a small business or start-up website. Your domain connects to the website host, which will then power your Website. Because of your hosting provider, visitors will be able to find your small business website when they type your URL into a search engine.
You can choose one of two routes, depending on your budget. The less expensive option shared web hosting, entails sharing a server with other websites. Dedicated hosting is much more costly, but it provides you with your private server and eliminates the need to compete with other sites that might slow down your speed.
6. Content management system
Content Management System (CMS) is a software application that assists you in managing your digital content. You will most likely desire a CMS that does not necessitate a great deal of technical knowledge. Each CMS is unique and designed to meet specific requirements.
The following are some of the most widely used content management systems:
- WordPress – It is the most widely used CMS. Because of the many plugins available to enhance your site’s functionality, I would suggest WordPress to most small business owners. WordPress is a very user-friendly tool.
- Drupal – Another popular CMS that is both flexible and user-friendly. It does, however, lack the same number of themes and plugin options as WordPress.
- Joomla! – Many developers prefer it over WordPress due to its better SEO, multilingual, and security features. However, with the appropriate plugins, WordPress can outperform Joomla!
- Squarespace – It’s ideal for beginners who don’t have any technical skills or the money to hire a designer. The site is jam-packed with small business website design ideas and professional templates to help you create a stunning website.
Ideally, it’s best to choose a user-friendly solution to create a website without any coding experience. And we would recommend going for WordPress.
Because anyone may download and use WordPress for free, it is free and open-source software, allowing you to use it on any website. And it can easily outperform any other CMS we have listed here with the appropriate plugins.
You might be asking where the cost comes from if WordPress is free? You can break down the price of developing a website into following categories:
- WordPress hosting
- Domain Name
- Plugins and Extensions (Apps)
7. Professional design
Layout design is an essential part of any website strategy, but people sometimes emphasize it while neglecting other essential components. People regularly allow their website design to become a barrier. Website design is pretty basic. People get drawn to aesthetically beautiful things. As a result, that is the aim. You should select a design that will attract people to visit your Website and stay as long as possible.
You must ensure that the user interface of your small business website makes a positive impression that leads to positive outcomes. You can accomplish it in several ways; however, here are a few ideas to get you started:
- You can utilize visuals that are attractive, eye-catching, and in font styles and sizes that are easy to read.
- Search Engines may penalize your Website’s ranking if the loading speed is slow. Ensure that your images are compressed and optimized for fast loading of whatever you’ve posted.
- Always look at the competition’s websites to see how they’ve built, developed, and optimized them; strive to incorporate comparable and better components that will work for your small business website.
- And perform a search on your target audience so you can figure out what they need from your site and make it simple for them to get it.
8. Make it mobile friendly
Making sure your Website is mobile-friendly is another step in creating a website for a small business. According to studies, people will abandon a page if it takes more than a few seconds to load. In case you’re working with a web design company, make sure your site is mobile-friendly.
Check to see if your Website works on mobile devices like smartphones and tablets. Because Google and other search engines have switched to mobile-first indexing, which emphasizes the performance of your Website’s mobile version when it comes to search engine results, don’t overlook this step.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) will be crucial in drawing visitors to your Website. It’s best if you offered the search engines with a short explanation of what those visitors will discover when they visit, in addition to including keywords or search terms that your audience is likely to type into Google (look out for our how-to guides on SEO coming to the blog soon).
SEO is the practice of improving your content to rank higher on search engine results pages (SERPs). There are a few keys practices to bear in mind, such as:
- Using relevant keywords in your posts and pages
- Optimizing Website for fast page speed loading time
- Choose a responsive design that allows your customers to view it on any device.
- Throughout your Website, provide both internal and external links.
- Using post as permalinks
If you use WordPress as your Website platform, you may use an SEO plugin like Yoast SEO to analyze your content and provide recommendations for improvement.
10. Implement a maintenance plan for your website
You can’t just build a website and then forget about it, allowing it to go stale. For a successful website, you must ensure that it is constantly well maintained. Keep an eye out for required updates, as well as anything that needs to be added or deleted.
Update your Website frequently with posts on current industry events, new products, offers, and business news to keep visitors coming back.
You should also make sure your software and add-ons are up to date at least once a month. Delegate the work to a reliable team member or a freelance website manager if you don’t have time to handle it yourself.
Starting a business website that costs less can help you create trust and reach a broader customer base than traditional marketing tactics might. You won’t have to worry about “not existing” to your current and future clients if you maintain your Website updated with new, current content and respond quickly to technical issues.