If you are a new business owner, and you are in the process building and/or designing a website for the first time, you’ve probably realized by now that it can be an exciting and daunting process at the same time. There are many aspects to consider: choosing the people you work with, the technical side of the site, SEO positioning, and much more.
We all know that when there are many choices to be made, the probability of making errors increases. Well, let me try to help you there. My name is Ofir Bar, and as an angel investor, I’ve helped many young businesses come to life. Let’s take a look at some guidelines, which I believe can help you save time, money and a whole lot of energy.
Find the right domain name
The first step to setting up a website is giving it an address – what’s known as a domain name. Ideally, the domain name is the name of your business (like mcdonalds.com or bestbuy.com). Those are usually not cheap and sometimes not even available. If that is the case, keep the following in mind when choosing an alternative:
- Pick a name that is easy to remember, short, and free of numbers.
- Use .com when it’s available.
- Try to add your main keyword or service to the domain.
Keeping your domain name short and simple helps increase the amount of traffic you get for your website, since it is easier to remember. When picking a domain name and registering it, you have to consider the price as well. Naturally, short and catchy domain names will be more expensive than long ones. You’ve got to find the right balance between an attractive domain name and the price you’re willing to pay for it.
Choose a good hosting provider
Choosing a name for your website is just step one. Next up: finding a host. Selecting a hosting provider is an important part of your website’s infrastructure since some of the most common functions are all part of the hosting service’s role, such as:
- Storage space (for files)
- Website speed (how fast the site will load)
- Domain privacy (protection of information)
- Email privacy (protection from spam emails)
Essentially, when you choose a hosting company, you want to go with one that offers fast, secure, and reliable servers. You also want them to be able to guarantee all of their services come at an attractive and competitive price, and yes, it is ok to negotiate sometimes.
Some companies to consider are Siteground, Cloudways, Namecheap, and Bluehost, but I advise you to do some of your own research, because you may be able to find something more suitable to your specific needs or region.
Design the Website
Now that your website has a home, you can start designing it de facto. There are many ways to do just that, and you don’t have to be an expert in it to understand just how it’s done. You can use a CMS builder such as WordPress or Shopify, or you can hard-code the website using HTML, CSS, Java, and other text-based languages (if you have an understanding of how these things work).
A good website design should be engaging and aesthetically pleasing. I’d personally recommend looking around and spotting design elements which you find pleasing.
Don’t forget SEO & PPC advertising
Once you have your website live, you may think the work is done and business will start rolling in. Unfortunately, that could not be further from the truth. For a website to be successful, there needs to be a consistent emphasis placed on digital marketing.
SEO and PPC ads are two of the best ways to do this. SEO is a natural marketing strategy that focuses on building your website’s presence through the use of search engines to drive traffic. PPC (pay-per-click) ads, are a great way to quickly make sales from your website.
When paired together, these two forms of advertisement can consistently generate new leads, which will in turn produce ROI (return on investment).
A Final Thought
Over time, working with many young businesses, I’ve realized that if a website wants to be remembered and stand out from the rest, it needs to be consistent. Sadly, too many businesses neglect their website. It’s not enough to just have a website. In this current eCommerce climate, a website is one of the most important tools for conducting business. Creating a website will come with challenges, but I hope this guide will be of assistance to you.