Are you getting ready to start building an online presence for your business? One of the first steps toward building a successful online presence is to have a website. Whether your business is purely digital or operates mostly offline, there are many benefits to having a good website.
As a small business owner, you might not be sure where to start. If you are not careful, the project could be a mess, and you’ll waste time and money. A significant amount of thought and planning go into creating the most effective websites on the internet.
What can you do to build a website that will serve your business well? Each small business website has its own journey, but there are tips and best practices that can lead you in the right direction. This post will cover some tips to help you build an effective website for your small business.
8 Tips for Creating Small Business Website
1. Incorporate Your Brand
Your website will do a lot to shape your business’s online identity. A good website will help you build and reinforce your brand. If you already have brand elements, you need to incorporate them into the design.
It could include a brand color palette, your logo, typography, or messaging. If you don’t have these brand elements, you need to consider developing them.
2. Find the Right Domain Name
A domain name is the string of words that make up your web address. It can be important for branding, but it can also make your website easier to find. Select a name that is relevant to your business or industry. If your company name is available, it might be a good option.
Beyond that, you want to select a domain name that is simple and easy to type. A name that is easy to remember can also be easier to share.
3. Consider Your Industry
Different types of businesses have different needs when it comes to building a website. For example, you’ll need payment processing if you sell things online. Various style trends may also apply to different industries. If you’re building a bankruptcy lawyer website, you’ll want to understand the unique needs of that industry.
The same is also true for real estate agents, accountants, plumbers, interior designers, etc. Take the time to understand the unique needs and concerns of the industry when planning your website.
4. Pick Your Website Platform
Much of the work of building your website can be done using tools that are very accessible. With various website builder platforms, small businesses can build attractive websites without the need for many technical skills. However, there are several platforms, and some may work better or worse for different types of businesses.
Investigate different platforms and compare features and functions. Beyond that, there are costs. Some might just charge to build the website, but others might also offer hosting plans.
5. Optimize for Mobile
Smartphone users make up an ever-increasing share of internet traffic. If you want your site to serve them well, you need to design it to work well on mobile and desktop. One key to this is to use a responsive design.
With responsive design, the site detects the device the visitor is using and adapts it to fit the screen. There are also tips like making buttons bigger and reducing clutter on the page to make a site more mobile-friendly.
6. Simple Navigation
You want visitors to know how to use and navigate your site from the moment they land on a page. For example, having a navigation menu at the top of each page can make it easier for visitors. A search bar might also be a useful feature for some sites.
An easy way to navigate back to the home page from every other page is also a good idea. The key to intuitive navigation is to lean on conventional design elements that your visitors already know.
7. Build Pages With Intent
Every page should have a purpose. Beyond that, everything you put on a page should serve that purpose. For example, the purpose of a service page should be to explain and sell visitors on using the service. You shouldn’t have a bunch of added elements that do not serve that purpose.
In most cases, the simpler the page, the better. Only include text or images that target your goal for the page. Once a page is complete, review it to make sure it serves its goal.
8. Test the Site’s Performance
Performance is crucial for a successful small business website. No one wants to use a glitchy website. Long loading times can also cause customers or clients to leave.
Test your site’s speed and performance to ensure it meets visitors’ expectations. You might also want to consider cross-browser testing tools. A site can work well on one browser while failing on another.
While modern tools do make it easier for people to build websites without technical skills, it might still be worth it to hire professionals. They know the best practices for website design and can help with things like testing and keeping the site updated. Professionals will also know how to troubleshoot if the site has problems.
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