Nowadays, it's expected for a business to have an online presence, including a website. Not having a website can affect the perception of potential customers. As we move deeper into an era of digital connection, even the smallest businesses can have a global presence.
Millions of websites do not attract any visitors; therefore, how can you ensure that you don't fall into the same trap of wasting your time, money, and energy? You need to understand and plan many features of your website, such as a strategy, content, design, and user experience.
We've seen patterns appear from working with thousands of business owners, highlighting some common problems that are easy to avoid. So here are the 4 things you need to know BEFORE you build a website.
As a business owner, you always have to remember that your brand strategy is the foundation of your business.
You have to take time to determine your business' purpose, uniques selling point, target audience, and your business's core values.
How will you know what you need to create if you don't know who you are and who you are selling to? When your brand strategy isn't defined, the lack of clarity comes across your website's visitors. Remember that you send a message to your clients, customers, and visitors when you put up your website.
You need to make sure that your message is relevant to your audience and clear across all platforms. That is why you must begin by implementing a successful strategy.
It's time to start considering your website's purpose and what type of journey you aim to lead people through.
Throughout your website build, you should keep in mind your initial message because it's the foundation of your website. You'll want to visualise and predict how will people move through your site and consider what impression you are giving off at every step.
Another vital aspect is having a clear idea of the average visitor to your website - your target customer. A substantial amount of what you include on your site has to be based on the answer to this question.
For example, suppose your target audience primarily consists of younger consumers. In that case, you may encourage them to interact with your site better if you include more imagery and videos than written content. You have to consider what your desired visitors prefer and what will make them stay on your website longer. That will determine the type of content you should include.
Creating your website will be more straightforward and efficient if you start with clear brand guidelines: your logomark and logotype, colour palette, fonts, image aesthetic, graphic elements and patterns.
To streamline your brand design on your website, here are some basic design questions that you should consider:
What fonts will be used? It's best to choose two fonts, where one will be used for titles and one for paragraphs.
What are the core brand colours? How will these be used throughout the site, for example, links, buttons, etc.?
What type of imagery will be used to convey my message?
What will the logo be like?
The content you create as you build your website will bring more visitors to your site, and it will cause them to stay longer and interact with your website. This is extremely important for getting people to purchase and increase your site's rank on search engines like Google.
The content you include will help your business to stand out and help you establish yourself as an expert in your market.
You want to pay close attention to your user and their preferred content. It's good to have a mix of written content, images, and video in most cases. When you create content for your website, take time to examine whether what you are providing aligns with the message you are trying to send and what your overall brand is all about.
Next steps for building your website
After doing the pre-website preparation, here are a few extra things you should consider:
Custom Web Design vs Website Templates
Domain Name and Host
Search Engine Optimisation (SEO)
Website Legal Requirements
Tracking and Analytics