Do you want a website for your business? Here are a few ideas to think through before you start.
There’s a lot to consider before putting up a website. A website should fit into your overall business plan and should ideally function as the hub of your online presence management. I like lists, they keep me on course, so here’s a list of pointers to get your thoughts on track about getting your business online:
Firstly, what do you want to achieve with this website? Its purpose will determine a large part of the content and design, so this is important to establish.
Do you want to:
- Sell a product
- Build your audience,
- Attract new customers,
- Inform or entertain,
- Collect email addresses?
Do you want the visitor on your site to:
- Sign up for a newsletter,
- Call for a quote,
- Buy a product,
- Come to your location,
- Fill out a form?
How do you want your website to perform any of the above for you? A website needs to either save you time or money (both is nice). How is it going to do that? And how is it going to fit into your sales process or marketing plan?
The second big idea to set out clearly is – who do you want to reach? Knowing your target audience doesn’t just influence your website, but also your online marketing strategies.
What does the majority of your audience look like? Consider:
- Culture, geographic location
- Financial means
- Hobbies, lifestyle choices, activities
How is your website going to draw new prospects, and does it offer anything for your existing audience? Is it important that they share your content?
The third idea is mostly nuts and bolts. Think about:
- Who will update the content of your website and how often will that be?
- What’s your budget to have the website built?
- Do you have a deadline for when the website needs to be ready?
Lastly, once you have thought these things through, have these at hand:
- Branding: logos, company colours, good quality images of your products or company, etc
- Provisional site structure: the navigation points or menu people might use to get around your site
- Content: at the very least note down some keywords if you don’t feel you can write something about your products or services
- Websites you like (or don’t like)
- Competitors’ websites
- Links to social profiles and pages to integrate into the site.
This is just the beginning! Now, have you considered how you’re going to spread the word about your website? Well, that’s for another post…