We all know that to have a business in our climate, a website is absolutely necessary, but where to get started often feels overwhelming.
We are here to help.
What’s in a Website name
Before you begin, find a url name. In this post, I will address all-in-one sites like GoDaddy, but for now, let’s assume you are building your website and not going with a template site. Go to a site like NameCheap and find a unique name.
Keep in mind your brand. Your name will need to be memorable, tie directly to your company, and be easy for your customer to type in. Try to avoid using dashes or underscores as these are keys not often used by people in every day typing. Remember many of your clients will be using a mobile device to type in your address.
Find a good server
Now it is time to start building. Building a website has 2 main components, a server to hold the data and a platform to display the site. First, you need to find a good company to host your website. Please, and I cannot stress this enough, do your homework on these companies. Unless you have a developer background, it is easy to make mistakes on setting up your server that will take down your site.
Finding a company with great customer service and tech support is essential to your success and stress management. I personally recommend WPEngine.
Just yesterday I made an error on my wife’s site that took it down. If it weren’t for their help, I would’ve been lost. As it turns out, I had a single typo that while I am sure I could find, they were able to troubleshoot it with me.
When choosing a provider, choose the better customer satisfaction rating over the technical ability of the company.
Why not a template website
If you read my post on Pinterest SEO, you may remember that Google places high value on the content of your site behind the scenes. With many of the template sites like Wix or SquareSpace you are given minimal SEO abilities to have your site show up on google.
These sites are great if you are trying to get out there and just have a website, but your SEO will suffer. It is much better to hire a developer or struggle through the process yourself.
Another note on those sites is you are incredibly limited on your themes and setup. Next section we talk about themes, but with the ready-to-go sites you often can’t easily change themes without disrupting your entire site.
Get a good theme going
Every website absolutely needs a theme. We discussed your brand often in our social media posts for the exact same reason. Don’t let your brand differ here as well. There are 2 major reasons to keep a consistent theme. First, your client found you and they want to know they have the right person.
If they follow you on Facebook and then come to your website and it looks entirely different from the brand you built on social media, they will think they got the wrong company. Then, they start to worry; reason number two. A client that is uneasy about the site they are on will not purchase on your site.
Having a consistent and easy flow theme will keep your customers happy and ready to spend money. Stick with 2-3 fonts and consistent colors loyal to your already established brand.
Don’t forget the blog
Blogging is the best way to hack the SEO game. When you blog, you are able to use keywords like digital marketing, website development and CCSE to help google find your page. (Yes I just used three of mine. Don’t hate).
But I know what you’re thinking. I am not a writer! I am a dance teacher or a contractor. My advice is for you to hire a good copywriter if you don’t want to put your own words out there. A starting rate is around $50 for a post and your site should have a new post every week at a minimum.
However, remember that those finding your website are customers that will hopefully buy from you. Just think of a blog as talking to your customers. 500 -750 words is sufficient for a blog post.
Create a follow up system
Lastly, your site needs a call to action. Most sites create this through a form. WordPress has built-in forms you can use if you choose not to purchase a third-party theme. To manage these contacts from your site, find an easy to use CRM.
MailChimp is a good one to use, but the free version is not worth the effort. I recommend upgrading. They charge based on the number of contacts you have being managed.
Thank you for reading today. For more information on social media posting or digital marketing in general, check out our blogpage and feel free to comment or contact us with any questions.