1 1 A Step- by- Step Guide for Building a Website for Your Business
2 2 Ge#ng Started With Your Website A well-built website is the foundation of your business And as we ve mentioned before, there s no better time than NOW to start building one. So, just the fact that you re reading this white paper right now is a great sign for your business. It signals that you are ready to truly take the next big step. But as a quick recap, let s outline some of the reasons why NOW is the best time to start your website project: Establish a presence and add credibility. Your website is your home base it s the place where prospects go to learn about your company, get their questions answered, and pay for your product or service. Establish a relationship with your clients. People do business with people who they know, like, and trust. Your website provides them an opportunity to get to know your business and feel more comfortable with you.
3 3 Ge#ng Started With Your Website A well-built website is the foundation of your business Collect and other contact information. With a solid list, you can streamline communication with your customers give them updates, alert them about special promotions, and build a trusting relationship. Get referrals. Your website makes it easy for your current customers to send your link to a friend who may be interested in your product or service. Your very own advertisement. A website is like a fullcolor, interactive advertisement that runs 24 hours a day, 7 days a week! You can drive traffic to it, and fill it with descriptive pages, interactive elements, and images. The reasons WHY are clear and, for the most part, businesses understand them. However, it s usually the how that trips them up. How to build a successful and profitable website and not just a run-of-the-mill, average website that doesn t do much for business.
4 4 Ge#ng Started With Your Website A well-built website is the foundation of your business Yes, the how can be a bit tricky. With tons of different content management software (CMS), hosting services, developers, and design aspects to choose from, it s tough to figure out just where to begin. That s why we created this white paper. To walk you through the process from a website idea, to a finished (and polished) website that generates leads, increases conversions, and builds authority for your business. So, without further ado, let s lay out the step-by-step process for building a website for your business!
5 5 1. Decide On The Purpose Of Your Website Like any worthy endeavor in life, your website needs a solid purpose. You need to decide exactly what you want your website to do for you otherwise, you ll be squandering your best online asset. But just any purpose won t do you need a purpose that s right for your business and its goals. Your best bet is to keep it simple. Basically, you have three strategic options: Sell products and services Generate leads Establish credentials and build authority How do you know which option is right for you? Well, the reason why a cafe needs a website is completely different to why a carpet cleaner needs one. The key? It s all about what your customers want.
6 6 1. Decide On The Purpose Of Your Website Since your service is high-end, visitors probably won t buy directly from your site, without at least talking to you first. So, the main thing you d want visitors to do is to schedule a call with you, where you could offer value and then pitch them on your service. Keep in mind, though: this decision is not absolutely set in stone. Even if you start off as a sales and e-commerce type of website, you can always add a blog and other elements at a later date.
7 7 1. Decide On The Purpose Of Your Website Do they want menus? Directions to your location? The pricing structure for your products or services? This is the type of information you need to know about your customers. Here are some questions to keep in mind when figuring this out: What are my customers looking for on my website? What can I offer my customers on my website? Why should they come to my site instead of my competitors? Why should they visit my website again? These answers will put you on the right path to understanding your customers. You may want them to: Sign up for your list Schedule a call Purchase a product or service Download a PDF/eBook Leave a comment Read some important content If you offer a high-end consulting service, then your website will probably fall under option two or three. The main focus would be on generating new leads, but you d also build out a blog with valuable content to establish authority in your field and show prospects your consulting expertise. Once you develop this understanding, you need to determine what you want your visitors to do once they get to your website. Again, this will differ depending on your type of company.
8 8 2. Choose And Register Your Domain Name Once you ve figured out the main purpose of your business website, it s time to choose and register your domain. Your domain name is what visitors will type in their browser when they visit your website. Here are some important things to keep in mind when choosing your domain name: Try to include the name of your company Domain names are important for search engines like Google. So, when possible, include words that people are likely to use when searching for your business and/ or the products or services that you sell Make sure your domain name is easy to pronounce and remember. Keep it short and sweet, and avoid weird punctuation Make your domain name unique, so people don t end up on a different site when trying to find your business.com is always best To register your domain name, you can use a service like GoDaddy. Through GoDaddy, you can also search for available domains, so that helps with the selection process too.
9 9 3. Outline The Content And Pages For Your Site Before you start designing your website, you should outline the content and pages. To start off, your website should the following five basic pages: 1. Homepage. This should include the name of your business, your location, plus benefits of doing business with your company, along with a call to action (which will differ depending on the purpose of your website). 2. Products and services. This page should detail your products and services, and display the main benefits of each. 4. About us. Tell your company story, include team members, list organization memberships (like the Better Business Bureau), and aim to get visitors excited to do business with you. 5. Contact us. Include your address, , phone number, hours of operation, and links to social media accounts. If your business has a physical location, you should also include a Google Map of the location, for easy navigation. 3. Testimonials. Show your experience through social proof with testimonials. Remember, people buy from people who they know, like, and trust.
10 10 4. Choose Your Web Content Management System A content management system is an application that allows you to publish, edit, and modify content, along with deleting and maintenance, from a central interface. The content management system you choose will depend on your business goals and the purpose of your website (and most CMS are free [open source]). The most popular CMS are Wordpress, Joomla, and Drupal but there are many other great options as well. Here are four questions you should ask before choosing a CMS for your site: 1. Does the CMS match your needs? Your CMS should align with the purpose and needs of your website. Some are better for ecommerce, while others are better for blogging, and so on. Make sure to do your research beforehand. 2. Does it allow for growth as your needs grow? This questions takes into account your vision for your business and the website. You want to make sure that your CMS allows for scalability, so you can extend functionality when needed and truly grow your website. Does it have the plug-ins and add-ons that you ll need later on? 3. Is there a support community? Support isn t always great for free CMS, so find out if there is a strong community and/or forums that you can utilize if you need help.
11 11 4. Choose Your Web Content Management System 4. What is the learning curve? This is where you want to avoid overwhelm. Opt for a simple CMS that does enough to suit your needs, and that allows you to get up and running quickly, without causing unnecessary confusion. This is much better than a CMS with too many advance features that you won t use. No matter what CMS you choose, you may want to consider hiring a web developer to, at minimum, do the initial setup for you this will save you countless hours of frustration, especially if this is your first website or your first time using the specific CMS.
12 12 5. Choose A Web Host Your web host is the remote location where your website and related software will be held and made available to visitors. This decision can be tough, because there are many choices available. There are a few important things that should factor in to your web host choice, such as the volume of traffic you expect (bandwidth), the quality of support services, whether your website contains a lot of images and video, the price, and the room for growth. Another big factor is whether your web host allows for automatic installation of your content management software. Most popular web hosts enable you to do this with one click, and you can usually use the same host for more than one website. Scalability is crucial here, because your business and website will (hopefully) always be growing and if your web host can t handle that growth, your website may have temporarily crash or have other issues. In terms of price, you can usually get a host for around $9- $10 per month.
13 13 6. Choose A Template For Your Website Now you ve got your CMS, hosting, domain, and a general plan and purpose for your website. It s time to actually start putting everything together. The first step is to choose a template for your website. For most CMS like Joombla and Wordpress, you can pick from hundreds and even thousands of templates that give your website the preferred look and feel. For example, Elegant Themes and Woo Themes offer many beautiful Wordpress templates at very affordable prices. There are templates geared more for ecommerce, others geared more for general blogs, and everything in between. No matter what kind of business you have, you ll be able to find a template to fit your needs.
14 14 7. Organize The Website And Develop The Content Once you ve chosen your template, it s time to organize your website and start filling it with content. What type of content do you want to display on each page? What images and videos do you want to appear? How do you want to structure the header, footer, and menu? This includes your logo and other visuals, as well as where your content will go, and on what pages. It also includes the placement of calls to action. On your homepage, there should be a call to action relating to the purpose of your website. The call to action may be a newsletter sign up form, a free-trial sign up, a buy now button, or any number of other things. This will depend on, as we mentioned before, what exactly you want visitors to do when the go on your site.
15 15 Need Help? A website is a crucial asset for your business. With a well-built website, you can accelerate your business, generate a massive amount of new leads and sales, and build authority in your industry. By following these steps and you ll be on your way to success with your business website! If you want some help along the way, or you want to leave it to the experts, we here at Caffeine Consulting would love to help you craft a vision for your website and bring it to fruition! Just click the link below to schedule a free call with me to discuss your website! Go Here To Schedule a Free Call:
16 Contact Us 16 Visit: caffeineconsulting.com Phone: Bending Oak Dr Dripping Springs, TX 78620