These days you can’t run a business without having a website. Some people are super comfortable about diving head first into the process, but for most people the process of setting up a website can seem a bit overwhelming. We would of course recommend that you turn to the pro’s for the part of actually building your site – but we might be biased as we consider ourselves the pro’s, and do this for a living. But regardless, whether you built it yourself or let someone else do it for you there are somethings you need to consider when you create your own website.
What do I need?
What type of website do you actually need? It might be that a one-page site is all you need, or at least all you need for now, especially if you’re only just getting started and don’t have that much content to share with the world yet. Trust us, you don’t want multiple pages with little or no content. It does not look good. On the other hand – if you do have a lot you need to communicate, don’t try and squeeze it all in on one page. The one-page website is for condensed material. Not lengthy essays. If you need to be able to go in to a lot of detail or have a complex business structure a multi-page site will be the way to go, as you can spread the information out across the site.
But I am not a designer?
We all want a beautiful website and luckily these days with systems like WordPress most of us can get exactly that, with a large community of talented developers and designers creating new themes every day. Choose one which suits you and your business, and try to look beyond the imagery used on the theme’s demo sites. Look at the functionalities, the layout of blog and portfolio posts and if there is anything you really don’t like, look for another theme.
What you say and how you say it
We can’t all be copywriters, but spend some time honing your message. Figure out what story it is you want to tell, and then make it clear and simple. Remember to focus on what it is you can do for your customers and clients – what problem are you the solution to? And get someone to read your copy, both some one who knows what you’re business are and someone who doesn’t. Is it clear to them what you are saying? Have you over-simplified or over-complicated your message?
Making you look good online
Not all of us can afford to have a graphic designer develop beautiful graphics for us or hire an amazing photographer capture the essence of your business – but that doesn’t mean that you should just snap some pictures with your phone and upload them to your site. A little care goes a long way and carelessness might even turn potential customers away. Luckily there are plenty of resources you can turn to, to raise the visual level of your site. Check out our guide on Images for more.
Building the navigation
Be mindful of how you want your visitors to navigate through your site. Try drawing your site structure or use post-its to determine the flow. Where should the call-to-actions be? Should all roads lead to the same destination, or do you need different audiences to end up in different places? What can you do to steer your audience from the landing-page to your target goal, whether that is a sale, signing up for a newsletter or even just sending you an email.