Deciding to get a website for your business or even upgrading your existing site can be a daunting task. There’s a lot of choices involved and too many choices can be crippling in decision making. So if a new website is in your future, or you want to give your old site a face-lift, here’s some tips that can help you come to the right decisions and be prepared.
What Do You Want Your Site To Do?
A website can serve many functions for a business. Perhaps you want a web presence for your small business. Are you looking to use it to generate new leads? Do you want to showcase your work? Are you selling a service or membership? Will it be an eCommerce store? Figuring out a goal for your website should be the first step you take in planning a new site. Once you have that goal in mind it becomes much easier to narrow down what you want, or what you should be doing.
How Do You Want It To Look?
Not everyone is an artist. But that’s why we’re here to help! Do you already have a company logo with branding? If so, you may want to consider using a similar or complimentary color scheme to match your branding. Pick out a main color and 2 accent colors that you’d like to see throughout your site. If possible, include what you’d like those colors to be used for.
Looking at competing businesses is a great way to get an idea of how you want your site to look. Not only does it give the designers a good direction to follow but you can see for yourself what works and what doesn’t. Do a Google search for similar types of businesses or of your known competitors. See what they’re doing, especially those that come up higher on the search results. Next, take a look at the company or designer you’re hiring to build the site. Look at their past work. In our case, we have a large portfolio of previous clients you can get some ideas from. Between these two categories, narrow it down to 3 sites. List out what you like and what you don’t like, or would like to change about them.
Figuring Out Your Site’s Content
For some this may be the most difficult part of the process especially if you need to write new content. You can always hire a writer to help out, though someone within your business who knows the real ins and outs of what your site is about can usually produce more relevant content. If you have an already existing site and it ranks well in search engines, it’s best to preserve what content you already have as best as possible. Otherwise you could potentially drop in the search rankings.
Having original pictures is a great way to stand out as well. Consider hiring a photographer to take pictures of your products, office, staff, or something with your branding. Stock photos are acceptable in many cases but having original photos can help set you apart from the rest.