10 things to think about when building a new website
When you start a business, one of the first things you think about is building a new website but what do you need to know?
When you start a business, one of the first things you think about is building a website. It’s exciting and your expectations are always high. You can’t help dreaming of the hundreds of leads that will fly in once your website is live.
Well, first the bad news. It doesn’t work like that. When you’ve finished building your website, it doesn’t suddenly appear on page one of Google, neither does it generate you instant leads.
Before we go into the 10 things to think about when building a new website, I’d like to give you this small piece of advice.
Seek out a professional. Unless you are a website designer, it’s unlikely you will be able to build a website that’s effective and it will cost you more in the long run.
That’s not to say you’re not amazing but we all have different skills, and a website designer will know how to get you noticed online.
10 things to think about when building your new website
Even if you do seek out a professional, you will still need to have some of the basics in place.
1 – Write a website strategy
When it comes to online marketing in general, you should always create a strategy. You need to know;
These are just some of the questions your website designer will ask.
2 – Do you have a strong brand identity?
If you don’t have a look and feel for your business yet, you will need one.
Many website designers can also develop your brand identity and design your logo so decide beforehand whether or not this is a service you need.
3 – What about content for your new website?
You’ll need rich and relevant content to successfully communicate with your ideal client and for your beautiful new website is picked up by search engines.
But content isn’t so easy to get right.
There are many things you need to consider, such as:
- keywords people will be searching for
- the use of plain English
- correctly nested headings
- chunking your content
- eye-flow and readability
- who will be writing your content?
- whether you’ll need help from a copywriter?
The list goes on…
4 – What are your keywords?
As mentioned above, you need rich and relevant content.
What words will potential customers be using to search for and find your product or service on Google?
Keep your keywords simple. Think about your product or service and location, and ensure that your keywords are sensibly used within the:
- page title and page name (slug)
- content of your page
- search description
- image descriptions
5 – What system will be used?
This is important. If you plan on managing your new website once it has been designed and launched, then we would recommend a system such as WordPress CMS.
Many website designers use this particular system because it’s really simple for business owners to use themselves. Essentially, if you can use software such as Microsoft Word, then you can edit your website using WordPress.
Your designer will help you to familiarise yourself with the interface and make your first few edits.
If you ask a developer to design your website using none CMS software, it’s likely to be hard-coded and may be more difficult for you to take over and mantain.
6 – How will you tell your story visually?
Visual content comes in many forms, including:
- and more
And it’s this kind of content that will help you to be more visible and tell your story in a way that appeals to your customers and helps them to decide whether to work with you, or not.
Let’s take photography, as that’s what we are experts in.
Do you have on-brand images for your website or are you planning on using stock images?
I would highly recommend seeking out a professional branding photographer and create a brand that is personal to you and your business. By doing this, you can be consistent across all of your online marketing.
7 – Blogging
Are you planning on writing blogs regularly? These are extremely effective for both marketing and Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) purposes.
If so, you will need to have a blogging area on your website.
Your web designer can set this up for you and make sure the look and feel of your blogs ties in nicely with the rest of your website.
8 – Will it be an e-commerce website?
If you are planning on selling products, then this is a whole new ball game. Designing this type of website is far more challenging so be prepared for a cost increase.
It’s best to scope this out with your designer early on so you can factor in costs and timescales .
You’ll also need to consider product photography.
9 – Your customer’s journey
It’s so important to make life easy for your customers. So ask yourself the following questions:
- How do you want them to feel when they land on your website?
- Where do you want them to go?
- What do you want them to do?
- How can you make their experience on your website a great one?
Get in the mind of your customer and map out their online journey.
If you’d like a little help engaging and involving your customers to tailor your website to meet their needs, please get in touch – user experience design is our bag!
10 – What is your call to action?
What do you want your customers to do? Do you want them to:
- contact you?
- buy from you?
- make an appointment with you?
- download your guide?
Make it clear what you want your primary call to action to be and make sure it stands out.
Planning on designing your own website?
If you’re hiring a professional to design your new website, they will worry about the technical bits for you. However, if you are planning on giving it a go yourself, you will also need to consider;
- domain names and hosting (we have a great recommendation for this)
- page load speeds
- mobile friendly
- social media integration
- Captcha tests
Having a website for your business is essential. Having the right branding for your business is essential. Building your new website yourself is not essential.
Want to talk websites?
We offer free 30 minute consultations. So if you’d like some help or advice on how to get the best out of your website, or if you’d like us to do all the hard work for you, book a date and time that’s convenient for you.