Unless you're a technical whizz or enjoy reading books on website composition in your spare time, all the different parts involved can be somewhat confusing, especially if this is your first website.
Here's your one-stop shop to the various parts and what you need to think about...
A domain name is the name of your website and usually includes the name of your business, for example if you're called 'Island Beauty' you might try and buy the domain name www.islandbeauty.co.uk.
It's important to buy your own so that you're the registered owner and have full control over it. Too many businesses get a free domain name with their hosting /website and when they try and move the website or want to make any changes to their settings, they can't. All their search history that they've built up and any brand awareness they've raised via the website's address will be lost and if they buy a new domain, any marketing materials (business cards/flyers) with the old address are wasted and they have to start all over again regarding search history.
This is the online 'space' that your website lives in. You can't have a website without it and the more room your website needs, the more expensive it will be. For example, if you have a simple, one page introductory website it will require a lower level of hosting than if you want a fully fledged, worldwide e-commerce store with 100+ products.
Bandwidth is the data transfer rate of your website provided by your hosting. Different providers supply varying levels of bandwidth, so if you plan to have videos (which are super hot in the world of web design a the mo) then check your hosting T&C's carefully.
Whilst not technically part of your website, they should be linked to your domain name so you appear professional. Would you buy anything from email@example.com? If you're stuck, your domain name provider should have some help available, or drop us a line.
The content of your website is important as it should tell potential customers what you do and why they should chose your business.
Copy – Text should be well written, tailored to your target audience and highlight the benefits customers get from your business. It needs to differentiate you from your competitors and grab someone's attention from the start as you only have a few seconds to entice them to read further. Not only that, it should be grammatically correct and easy to read as long, strung-out sentences filled with badly spelt waffle will quickly lose you any business.
Images – High quality, interesting images will instantly spark your audience's interest and keep them glued to your website. If you're selling products, make sure the photographs do them justice, nobodies going to buy your product based on a dodgy looking, mobile phone image which is dark and blurry. If you're selling services, think carefully about how to represent them in a way that communicates to your clients.
Extras – What kind of contact details do you want displayed? If you have a premises, do you need a map to show how to find you? Which social media links do you need included? Will you need your Terms and Conditions provided?
Your website is your shop front which promotes your business 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, so getting the design right is crucial and we highly recommend investing a small amount for a professional.
Branding – do you have a logo and style guide? It's important to maintain a consistent visual representation of your brand across all mediums, especially your website.
Responsive – Does your website adapt according to what sized device it's being used on? Over half of all searches are done via a mobile device... don't alienate that section of your market!
Call to action – guide your potential customers into booking or buying from you with well designed call to actions
Content Management System (CMS)
Most businesses want to be able to update the website themselves, after all, it makes sense rather than paying a professional every time you need to change a few words. Different systems offer different levels of control, for example, ours is super flexible and will let you;
are all e-commerce enabled
It will also provide you with a metrics system so you can evaluate how well your website's working, where traffic is coming from and the most popular content.
Search Engine Optimsation (SEO)
Optimise your website for search engines so that when potential customers are looking for you and are ready to buy, they can find you. There are lots of things to consider so we also suggest talking to your web designer about how to achieve the best results,
Add Google analytics
Use your keywords in content
Build incoming links
Optimise meta tags
Add descriptive alt tags
Use H1 headings
Run a blog
Update your site regularly
And if any company emails and guarantees you a number one Google ranking, don't fall for it. Google themselves have said it's impossible so don't be a fool – check out Google's article here https://support.google.com/webmasters/answer/35291?hl=en
Now your website is built how is anyone going to know it's live or find it online? If you expect to sit back and relax until business falls into your lap, think again. Be proactive in letting people know about your new website with;
Updated business stationery
Email signature including a website link
We hope that's helped and we'd suggest keep this post somewhere easily accessible. However, if you'd rather just have a chat with someone, grab hold of our Nemonet team on 01983 810505 or firstname.lastname@example.org