Need a Website for Your Small Business? This is How to Do it!
There are many things to consider when planning a great website for your small business.
Answer these questions before you start:
- Why do you want a website?
- Are you considering adding an online store or blog?
- What is your budget?
- How tech savvy are you?!
It can feel overwhelming when you are in the planning stages! This article provides a framework to guide you.
Do Your Research
These are some of the basic requirements you will need:
- Web hosting
- Domains registration
- Website builder
- Content for your web pages
- A marketing plan
There are many more components to consider. For now we focus on – Web Hosting, Domain Registration and a Website Builder.
Why do you need a web host and domain registration? In our article – Web Hosting: What You Need to Know!, it’s discussed in detail.
This is a summary:
“What is the difference between web hosting and domains?
A website is made up of a lot of different files. These files need to be stored somewhere on a server and then ‘served up’ when searched for via a web browser, such as Google. Think of your web host as your websites home, the actual ‘building’.
Your domain name is the address which points to your website’s home. Like your street address for your actual brick and mortal home.
How do web hosting and domain names work together?
When an Internet user types your domain name – OpenHost – into a browser, such as Google, it is translated into an IP address (Internet Protocol) which is sent to the your web host’s server, which in turn ‘serves up’ or sends your website files back to the user to view.
To recap, you need a web host (website home) in order to have a website, and you need a domain name (address) so your website can be found.”
You will come across a lot of tech terminology that leaves you feeling confused. Our previous article – Web Hosting: Understanding the Terminology – will help you!
What is a website builder? This article – What is WordPress? – explains it very well!
“If you Google ‘website builder’ and check out Wikipedia’s definition, this is the answer: “Website builders are tools that allow the construction of websites without manual code editing.”
Remember our question at the beginning of this article … “How tech savvy are you?!” If you are not an IT guru you will need the help of a Web Host, Domain Registrar and Website Builder to get your small business website up and running and launched onto the Internet!
Find a Web Host Who Offers You: One-Stop-Shopping!
Now that you know WHY you need a Web Host, these are the most important points to consider when finding ‘THE ONE’ that suits your needs best:
- Acceptable Uptimes
- Great support
- Excellent security
- User-friendly interface
- Cost effective
‘One-Stop-Shopping’ – Find a host that offers you:
- Affordable rates when upgrading to bigger storage packages
- Compatibility with your chosen Website Builder
- An interface or control panel that is easy to use
- Email hosting
These articles have more details that may help you:
- Choosing a Web or Blog Host: These are the MUST-HAVE Features!
- Ask Your Potential Web Host These Questions
Choose the Right Website Builder
There are plenty of Website Builders to choose from! The market leader by far, is WordPress. WordPress offers theme and plugin choices to suit every business in every industry you can think of! As consumer’s needs evolve, WordPress works hard to make sure they provide solutions.
Get an overview of all the features on offer but don’t lose sight of the intended purpose of your small business website. Stay true to your business brand and culture.
Must-have Website Pages
Almost all websites offer the following web pages:
- Contact Us
- Landing Page
The About, Home and Contact Us pages speaks for itself. The Landing Page engages the website visitor with Call-To-Action buttons.
Here are some examples:
- Sign up for …
- Download now …
- Limited offer …
- Click here for your free …
Read more about it in our article – A Website – Deconstructed.
You Need Flexibility!
You don’t want to create a website from scratch each time your business grows or diversifies! Changing the website theme and adding different plugins should make updating your website quick and easy. Therefore choose a website template and a website builder that caters for this. Also, choosing a web host that allows you to grow will make it easy to add storage or move from shared to dedicated web hosting services.
What else to consider?
Don’t forget the overall look and feel of your website!
You want website visitors to:
- Recognise your brand – be clear and direct
- Enjoy the experience – easy navigation
- Recommend it to others – great content!