There’s so much more than meets the eye when it comes to making a website. It’s not merely creating the website that you need to think about— it’s all the other components of that site that add time, complexity, and value to your build. The goal of this blog post is to help familiarize small businesses and start-ups with the different components that go into making a website. We’ll also be sharing some expert tips and tricks we’ve collected over years of building websites for businesses just like yours. Let’s get started!
What’s the Purpose of a Website?
Designed to do many things for you, you’re the purpose of your website is to help you find customers or clients, communicate your services, sell your products, and tell your story. But most of all, your website exists to answer your customer’s and client’s questions.
…But I Just Want to Sell My Stuff!
Perhaps this isn’t something you thought about when you began building your website for the first time, but your website isn’t just a place to sell your products or services. It’s a vital component of your larger scale business ecosystem.
Your website drives people to find you through search. It’s also a tool that allows people to connect to you through social media. And, like all digital business tools, it has multiple components that have to adhere to the standards of the digital sphere— such as how it presents and functions on mobile devices, whether or not you’re hitting certain keywords for SEO, and more.
Rule #1: Your Website is Never Done!
Apple is constantly updating their software so that it performs seamlessly within their cutting-edge products. If they were to constantly design newer, slimmer, lighter devices without updating the software that runs on them, their products — no matter how sleek or shiny they might be — would be rendered useless.
Just like Apple, every business owner must adapt the mindset upfront that their website must constantly shift and evolve over time depending on their needs and the needs of their customers. Once you’ve recognized and accepted this fact of life upfront, it’s going to be a whole lot easier for you to plan your website. Which brings us to our next point…
Planning Your Website
When making a website, you must plan to include the following four elements:
Choose imagery that enhances your message and speaks to your customer. You can take your own photos/videos, use free stock or “royalty free” photos/videos, or pay for stock imagery/video. Be careful when opting for free stock visuals, for it can be a slippery slope. Make sure you are complying with the correct usage rights for any unoriginal images or videos you plan to use on your website—and always be sure appropriate credit is given when it is due. Don’t be afraid to reach out for written permission from the original photographer/artist/etc. to use their visual content on your site!
Browse our portfolio to see how TTG has implemented certain visuals on some of our client’s websites.
Copywriting is the art of writing text for your website. This can feel like a heavy task. Start with the five W’s (Who, What, Where, When, Why) and how:
- Who are you?
- What makes your business or products special?
- Where do your customers get your products?
- When are you available for services?
- When will your products arrive?
- How do your customers contact you?
- Why should your customers buy from you?
- Are you easy to work with?
Writing website copy that answers these questions ensures that you’re covering your most important bases. You’ll also want to determine how you’re going to layout your text on your website. And of course, you can’t forget about your messaging! Be clear, be direct, connect with your customers, and don’t hold back from asking for business!
Feel free to click around our website for website copy inspiration. You can also see some of the copywriting we’ve completed for our clients here.
When it comes to choosing a web platform for your small businesses or startup, start simply by getting your foot in the door. Don’t worry so much about whether or not you’ll outgrow your website in the future— cross that bridge when you get to it. Simply focus on getting started.
All-in-one Platforms: We recommend all-in-one platforms for small businesses and start-ups for a very obvious reason—their fees are all-inclusive. This means they’re going to take care of your website software/technology and hosting simultaneously. What’s more, all-in-one web platforms oftentimes offer excellent support services via call, chat, email and community/freelancers.
Add-ons: Opting for an all-inclusive web platform also gives you the added benefit of add-ons. Add-ons are features for your website that allow it to grow as you do. Examples include review sections, community tools, CRM software and more.
Cross Integration: Another important thing to keep in mind is whether or not you plan to sell on Facebook, Etsy, eBay, Amazon, etc. If so, be sure to choose a web platform that allows for cross integration!
We recommend the following web platforms for eCommerce & non-ecommerce businesses:
- Square Space
We’re Shopify, bigCommerce, and Wix partners—feel free to contact us to learn more!
Last – but certainly not least – making a website means making sure you have access to the data you need to gain better insights into your web visitors. This means setting up appropriate analytics and data tracking to include audience segments, filters, and possible places for integration.
Technology Therapy Group is a data-driven, full-service marketing agency. Click here to find out how our “Analyzing Your Analytics” digital auditing package can help improve your data tracking on your website.
Don’t Want to Leave Anything to Chance? TTG Has You Covered
If simply reading this blog post already has you feeling overwhelmed at the idea of creating your own website—we’ve got you covered. TTG offers full-service web design, development, integration and mobility. We also offer a “4 Weeks to Fantastic” web building package that’ll have your website up and running in 28 days or less. Get started today!