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10 Steps to Take Before Building Your Business Website

Mar 11, 2024 | Web

Home > 10 Steps to Take Before Building Your Business Website

Creating a website for your business is a necessary step. Before you rush into creating a website, there are 10 steps you should take to ensure that you hit the ground running. These steps will help make sure you don’t have to spend extra time reworking your website after launch. Let’s dive into the 10 steps!

Step 1: Set Expectations

Your website is like the home of your business, so similar to your home, you also need to have a good foundation. Taking some extra time on the onset, can save you headaches, time and money down the line. This is also important to ensure that you and anyone else who may be involved in the process are on the same page. 

Step 2: Set a Goal 

Having a goal for your website is important because determining what you want users to do on your website will impact the layout. Ask yourself, what is the primary goal of your website? What do you want users to do? A website that attempts to do too many things, overwhelms users and causes them to leave before completing any action. Every page on your website should be aimed towards getting users the information they need to take your desired action. 

Step 3: Understand your website visitors

Just like it’s critical to understand your audience when you embark on any marketing campaigns, it’s just as important to truly know your target audience when creating your website. How old are they? What appeals to them? This will influence not only the content on your website but also its layout. Similarly, understanding your audience will ensure that you are designing your website with them in mind; for example, it’s highly likely that if your potential visitor is under 50 years old, they are probably primarily (or at least initially) viewing your website on a mobile device. 

Step 4: Secure a URL

Your URL is your website’s address. It is important that it is not only memorable, succinct and easy to spell but also that it relates to your business. If your company name is long, see if there’s a way to shorten it that is still unique and easily related back to the company. If you’re looking to secure your domain check out SpaceHost, the hosting arm of Peralta Design. 

Step 5: Do competitive research

The first step before you even begin to plan your website out further is to review 3-5 websites of similar businesses. This gives you a better frame of reference regarding what you like or dislike about their website. This could include items like: look, user friendliness, navigation, readability, and more. Having this basis makes it easier for you to then plan how you’d like your own website to look. 

Step 6: Plan out your website

Taking our house analogy to an extreme, planning your website is like creating a blueprint for your house. You not only want to ensure that you’re planning in a way that can help you scale if necessary long term – for example, placing the electrical and plumbing in areas where you may want to have a bathroom in coming years. But also making sure that the flow makes sense – we wouldn’t want users to open the front door and appear in a bathroom or bedroom – similarly, we want to ensure that the information we have on the homepage follows a logical and simple flow towards your goal. If you already have a website created, it is best practice to have an analytics tool such as Google Analytics running on it. This will allow you to gather actual data on how users are navigating your website and which pages are the most frequented, helping you make informed decisions on how to improve the flow in any coming updates. 

Step 7: Identify important keywords

One important aspect of having a website is showing up on Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs); this is often where users begin their search so ensuring you rank on these pages assists your visibility. To begin thinking about this, pinpoint 3-5 keywords that are related to your business’s products/services. These are words that will be sprinkled throughout your website copy. One way to start thinking about this is by thinking about what users type into the search engine in order to find out more information about your services. 

Step 8: Determine Your Content

Having your content outlined or at least having a clear idea of what content you want to share enables you to plan the layout of your website more effectively. It also helps prevent unnecessary repetition across pages. Keep your copy brief and focused, ensuring it communicates essential information such as your offerings and unique selling points.

Visual elements on a website can make or break your image. High quality images help your business look more professional. If needed, hire a professional for help or utilize stock photography where you can (for example if you do not need photos of your team, location or products). All images on your website should be high resolution and match your business aesthetic. To outline what photos you may need, use your sitemap in order to make a list and gather those prior to beginning your website.

Step 9: Ensure Brand Consistency 

We’ve said it several times before but the same remains true for your website: brand consistency is key. Having a consistent logo on your website solidifies your brand image and brings it to a whole new level. The same holds true for the other aspects of your brand identity. It creates a more cohesive look and therefore increases trust as it increases how legitimate your business looks. If you want to learn more about what that includes, read our blog on brand identity.  

Step 10: Select a CMS platform

Choose a website building platform that suits your needs. Selecting the proper Content Management System (CMS) depends on your needs. To learn more about how to pick the right CMS for you check out our blog post that outlines what you should consider as well as popular CMS platforms. If you’re not sure or already selected a platform but don’t want to build it yourself, we can help – simply reach out via our questionnaire.

In Conclusion

In conclusion, embarking on the journey of building a website for your business requires thoughtful planning and consideration. Remember, a well-executed website is not just a digital presence but a powerful tool that can drive results and propel your business forward in today’s competitive online landscape. So take the time to strategize, plan meticulously, and invest in the necessary resources to create a website that truly reflects the essence of your business and delivers value to your customers.  Building a website is a big endeavor, so take the time to do it right and be sure to enlist help if needed. 

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