A Business Website – Why You Need One
A business website is no longer a nice thing to have, it is a necessity. Regardless of your other marketing efforts, a website for your business lets potential customers find you when they search online, and then learn more about you if they choose. In fact, those other marketing efforts such as social media pages, Google AdWords campaigns, email marketing or business directory listings should all be pointing right at your professional business website. Some of those options ( like Google AdWords) are not even an option unless you have somewhere online to point those potential customers to!
Some business-owners still think that a website is only needed for businesses that want to sell their products online. While it is true that you need a website to sell online, a better way to think of a website is as an extension of your business card. Your business website presents information about you or your business to anyone who is interested. It should detail your background, your experience and make note of other credentials that qualify you for the job. A business website builds your credibility and gives potential customers confidence in choosing to do business with you.
Key Steps in Building Your Business Website
Diving in and going for it can be easier than you think. Trying to tackle the task of building a business website on your own while you are busy running your business might be an option – but we highly recommend finding a professional web design company like OmniOnline to help you wade through those tasks. That’s step #1 – find a reputable web design firm that has experience, earns your trust and confidence, and is easy to communicate with.
Step #2 is deciding what the purpose of your website will be. It may be very simple and fairly static (not changing content very often). It might be something just like a digital business card that tells people what you do and lets them know how to contact you. That’s a great option to start with if you don’t already have a business website.
Or it might be more dynamic. Maybe you have a lots of knowledge you’d like to share with customers and potential customers alike. You might have a page on your website where you can write and publish your ideas and thoughts. By the way – sites with good quality blogs that are updated often get ranked higher by search engines like Google and make your site easier to find by potential customers.
You might decide you want to simplify your business processes or consolidate administrative tasks. You might want an online calendar or directory, sign-up forms for newsletters, photo galleries or testimonials or even an e-commerce portion to sell your products or services online. Your ideas and your budget are really the only limits.
Step #3 is to work with your web design firm to decide on an actual design – the look and feel of your new business website. A good web designer should be able to listen carefully to your ideas and then bring them all together in an organized way that looks great but also works Responsively ( if you opt for a site that responds to the device/display size users are viewing the site on) and maximizes your Search Engine Optimization (SEO).
Step #4 is to start writing and organizing what the content of your site will be. We sometimes call this a taxonomy, but that’s just another way of saying what will your headings and menus say and what content will go in those pages and sub-pages. This is an important stage though and it is one area that you can probably do better than your web designer. After all, you understand your business best and so its important that you try to break your business information into its simplest parts and then clearly explain those parts and the products or services associated with them to your audience. A well-organized site not only makes more sense to viewers and helps them navigate and find things on your site easily – but it also helps search engines index your site and present it to to potential customers in those search results. Your web designer might be able to approach your taxonomy like a new customer would and therefore give you great feedback on how to simplify and clarify it.
Step #5 is sometimes the hardest one in the whole process. It is taking the plunge and releasing that content out to the world. Many business-owners really struggle with this and want to keep tweaking and editing their content until it is perfect. The fact is – perfection is an unattainable goal. There are many articles written on this subject but the consensus is that you have to start somewhere and that your best effort (even if it’s not perfect) is better than nothing!
We recommend you get your web design firm to look over your content and give you advice on the quality of your organizing as well as tips and tricks on SEO and navigation. Once that is complete – launch it! Go ahead – the world will be a better place because of it!
Step #6 is to analyze and maintain your website. Your web design firm should provide you with some sort of statistical tool (we use Google Analytics for its quality and price – it’s free!) to analyze your site and how it is being used by viewers. You can then adapt, make changes and tweak content to get better results and help improve the online experience that users have on your website.
It can sound like a daunting task, but it’s not. Especially with a professional in your toolkit to help you along. Here at OmniOnline we work through this process every day with businesses of all types from Regina and all around Saskatchewan. So if you’re ready to take your business to the next level and see how building a Business Website can positively affect your bottom line – get in touch with us by clicking here or calling us at 306-586-6118. We’d love to learn more about you and your business and find a solution to the issues you’re currently facing.