Are you beginning to feel as if every small business is launching their own website? That’s because, well— they are. Digital marketing isn’t just for big name brands anymore. In fact, according to the SBA, roughly 64% of small businesses had their own dedicated website in 2019. The reason why the remaining 36% of small businesses don’t have a website is because SBO’s simply don’t know where to start. For those of you who fall within that 36%, there IS hope; with over twenty years of insider know-how on launching your website online, Technology Therapy is here to help.
Creating a Plan
First things first, it’s important to recognize upfront that your website is never truly “finished”. Just as a business owner never stops building their business, you should never stop working on your website. Your website is more than just pretty pictures and well-chosen words. It takes real, quality effort, and your commitment to sustaining said effort is crucial. Establishing this expectation upfront guarantees you’ll see significant return on your investment.
Determining Your Goal as An Organization
Now that we’ve established that your website is a continuous work in progress, the next step is to determine your goal as an organization. Is your company B2B or B2C? Are you selling products, services, or both? Is it your goal to have customers buy from you directly? Or does your goal involve a path to purchase— meaning you want to touch the same buyer multiple times throughout their buying experience? (Pro Tip: If path to purchase is part of your goal, you’ll need to ensure you’re building in several touch points throughout the customer journey; and remember—a website is NOT the equivalent of physically standing in front of your customer, so you cannot bury a request for an opportunity!)
Selecting Where You Want to Market Your Website
Once you’ve determined your goal as an organization, it’s time to ask yourself: “Where do I plan on marketing my website?”. The answer to this question has the power to determine just how much traffic your website receives, and therefore it will shape your focus moving forward.
To put it simply, where you market your website influences who flocks to it and how often—not to mention their rate of conversion. There are a number of places and ways to push your new site, including social media, digital advertisements, organic search and more. It’s best to start with some keyword research. This doesn’t need to be an all-out SEO strategy; simply some basic research to get in the mindset of shaping the content of your website around the keywords and phrases your ideal customers are searching for:
- Who is your customer?
- What are their needs?
- When they come to your website, what are they looking for?
- What information do they need to find quickly?
- Does it connect to the person you’re talking to?
- Did you pick images that represent the relationship your customer has with you?
Regularly outlining and understanding these components will help you create and maintain a website that can help your customer and make your business grow.
Other Key Factors to Consider When Launching a Business Website
In addition to the steps detailed above, there are a few other things you’ll need to consider when launching a website for your business:
Selecting a platform for your SMB website.
If you’re selling products online, you’ll want an eCommerce solution like Shopify, Big Commerce, etc. For business owners looking to create awareness and promote services, WordPress, GoDaddy, and Squarespace are other platforms you might consider looking into.
Technological tools you need when you launch & why they matter.
There are a number of tools available for small business owners to take advantage of when launching their new website. These tools work to create excitement over the launch, draw users to the site, and ensure everything on your website is running as it should. Not to mention, they make your life a whole lot easier. Email marketing tools like Klaviyo and Mailchimp can help you grow your list and create excitement over new content as you add it to your site. Social media post-scheduling tools are also something to take advantage of when launching your site, along with Google’s several free tools for small businesses, which you can learn more about here.
Requirements for getting your website listed on Google & Google Shopping.
You’ll need to make sure you submit your website to Google to appear in search and on Google Shopping. Choosing the right keywords, managing meta tags, and optimizing for mobile are just a few other things you’ll want to take care of prior to launch.
Set time and budget expectations.
Don’t forget the importance of setting time and budget expectations for creating and launching your website. Failure to do so is the fastest way to turn both your website, and its launch, into a walking nightmare. Trust us—we’ve been doing this a while.
Your New Website, Start to Finish, in Just 4 Weeks
For small business owners who need a bit more hands-on help with setting up a new website, or simply don’t have enough time to go it alone ,TTG is here to help—and you’ll love our “4 Weeks to Fantastic” web package.
Trust the digital marketing experts when we say that your very first step in planning for your own website should be determining your goal as an organization. Our web-building experts will create/update and launch/re-launch your business website in just 4-weeks’ time—handling all the behind the scenes work necessary to make it happen! Learn more about 4 Weeks to Fantastic here.