Need a website; you’ve come to the right place. We are going to assume that your business is set up but need a website setup.
According to a recent survey, 81 per cent of consumers now look online before making a purchase. I take it that that’s not a shock.
Where do I start?
Well to start, you need three things: domain, website hosting and a website. But you need to know much more. To see what, here an easy to follow guide.
WHY IS YOUR COMPANY’S WEBSITE IMPORTANT?
If your business is to withstand the first couple of years, you’d better make sure you have a website. According to the Welsh Government, 93% of all business purchase decisions start with an online search and a visit to a company website.
That means you need to create a credible site your potential customers can trust. Luckily, building a website is faster, cheaper and easier than at any time.
Covid-19 has changed the way we shop faster than ever before. Businesses are now forced to have an online presence to satisfy the demands of shoppers. There are many restrictions in place by governments around the world advising people to stay at home where possible.
As a consequence, people who would normally prefer to visit the shop to make a purchase are experimenting with online shopping. As a business, you don’t want to be left behind.
SHOULD YOU BUILD A COMPANY WEBSITE MYSELF OR EMPLOY A PROFESSIONAL?
Countless people utilise the internet to obtain information about the stuff they need. This way, it’s vital that companies must have well-designed websites that offer information such as working hours, contacts, etc.
Now, one of these decisions you’ll make while designing your website is whether you’ll do it yourself or hire an expert. Someday back, there would have been no debate about hiring a professional to get perfect results.
But, thanks to online tools such as website builders, even non-tech savvy individuals can build an excellent website. Yet, before you begin this building website yourself design or pay someone to create your site, you should weigh up the benefits and limitations of both.
WHAT IS MY BUDGET?
Like countless things, you get what you pay for. So it would be best if you were practical about your budget. Perform some research also shop around. But start by being honest. How much money you have to spend?
You don’t have to try to do it all within one go. Think of an incremental plan. Think minimum viable product – MVP. You may not know this, but it takes a while for Google to rank you.
It could be as little as 3 – 6 months or longer, depending on how competitive your industry is, in other words, how Google trusts you.
After all, you’re a new website. Why should Google show your website other a well-established site?
The cost of a business website varies because the requirements are not all the same. Try to factor in on-going maintenance and running cost. Try to plan between £400 – £600 for a year. If you spend less, consider it a bonus.
But if you want something more custom, be prepared to spend between £1000 – £5000.
HOW TO CREATE A BUSINESS WEBSITE
Creating a website for your business has never been cheaper or easier. So why, according to Companies House data researched by Glass.ai, do just 30% of UK registered companies have one.
With drag and drop capability, a generous selection of ready-made templates, website builders enable anyone to make a professional-looking website.
That’s not to say you couldn’t hire a web designer if you’re after something more bespoke, but it would cost you a lot more.
Wix came out on top, thanks to its ease of use and variety of templates, followed by Squarespace and Weebly. However, WordPress is the number one platform for building websites. The top theme is Astra with the top page builder being Elementor.
The industry is split between the like of Wix and WordPress. Wix is a lot easier to set up but as you evolve it harder to customise. For instance, try to change your design completely. WordPress, on the other hand, is highly customisable but has a higher learning curve.
We prefer WordPress because of its flexibility. Who likes being held to ramson? We’re not saying that Wix or simpler products are bad. Actually, they are a great product if you intend to be a small business. However, if you have any aspirations on growth, WordPress is the way to go.
In fact, WordPress currently powers around 34% of all websites!
WordPress and Drupal are the two most well known and popular open-source content management systems. In fact, WordPress currently powers around 34% of all websites! (calliaweb.co.uk)
WHAT IS THE PURPOSE OF YOUR SMALL BUSINESS WEBSITE?
So a potential customer comes to your website after hours of research. The user will make 2 choices, leave or stay. It’ll all depend if your website provides a solution to their problem.
If you got asked by a web designer, what was the purpose of your website, what would you say?
- Do you want to sell online,
- What services will you provide?
- Do you want an online presence or otherwise known as a brochure website?
- Are you an informational or a how-to site?
- A news site
- Plus many more.
MAKE SURE YOU KNOW THE LEGAL REQUIREMENTS FOR BUSINESS WEBSITES.
Fake news and dodgy websites are throughout the internet. The Uk government does have laws in place to protect consumers. If you are a business owner, it’s something you should take note.
Here are some examples of legal requirements websites in the UK:
- Terms and conditions or website use notice
- Privacy notice if you gather consumer information
- You must include your company’s contact details.
- You must include your company’s registered office address details.
You can find these on the UK Government website if you’d like to check out your options.
DECIDE WHAT YOU WANT PEOPLE TO DO ON YOUR WEBSITE – CALLS TO ACTION.
You want to decide about a call to action when building your company website. What is a call to action? It is an encouragement to users of your website to take the action which will drive them to convert buyers or customers.
A call to action will ultimately dictate conversions your website. It’s all about, what do you want a website visitor to do to generate revenue.
- Call you.
- Send a message for a callback.
- Buy something.
- Supply their email address so that you can market to them later.
- Build trust by reading a how-to guide.
You’ll need content. You may also see some people refer to content as COPY. It’s the words, pictures, video that you display on each page. It’s what search engines use to rank your website.
When someone visits your website, they have an intention. The four main intents are as follows:
- Transactional – Want to buy something.
- Navigational – Searching for your website.
- Informational – Searching for a solution to a problem.
- Commercial investigation – Comparing products or services.
It’s the single biggest cost in terms of time or money for a website. It’s a necessary evil. The main purpose of a search engine like Google a Bing is to display a website that will solve the user intent.
You can imagine that if you kept getting poor or irrelevant sites when you searched, and another company is. People will stop using Google and Bing and go elsewhere.
If you can’t or do not want to write the content, expect to have to outsource at a considerable cost. You could be facing about £150 per 500 words. The number of words depends on your competition. The average is about 1500 words a page for a blog.
You could try freelance websites like Fiverr but at your own risk. For many freelancers, English is not their first language so that the quality can be poor.
The last step, as soon as your website is set up, connect website analytics. Google console and analytics are free and relatively easy to set up.
Knowing who your customers are, and their behaviour is critical to your success. Some useful metrics that you need to identify.
- Website speed.
- Which keywords people use to find your site.
- The bounce rate.
- How long are people spending on each page?
- New vs returning visitors.
- Do visitors scroll to the bottom of the page?
- Do you have any broken links?
The internet has opened up an array of choice, which is a challenge in itself. It’s better to start small and scale as you go.
Build the website yourself if you can. I’d always recommend WordPress over the Wix because of the flexibility. If however, your website is just solely their to have an internet presence, go for Wix.
Both Wix and WordPress offer a large selection of templates to get you up and running fairly quickly. Youtube is an excellent resource with plenty of tutorials.
Just as important as building a website is your legal requirements. Don’t forget it.
You may have heard a lot of talk about SEO and noticed that I hadn’t mentioned it for a good reason. The overriding factor is providing a resolving user intent. SEO can come later after your site is up and running.
If you need any help with your website, send us a message, and we’ll be happy to help.