Welcome to the first in a series of posts about getting your business online. Even if you are not yet sure you will start a website, the aim is to give you the information to make an informed decision for your business.
So let’s start with the basics of what you need to do to get a website up – and let’s make it a decent website that your business doesn’t need to be ashamed of! (We could get a website up in about 10 minutes but it may do more harm than good!)
- get a domain name – I suggest doing this even if you don’t add a website for some time. Keep the name for your use and you can use it as an email address even if there is no functioning website yet
- get a web host – this means you are paying someone for some space on the internet. There are many hosting packages available, covering various features and a huge price range – it is feasible to get hosting for under $100 a year so look around. We’ll cover hosting options later in this series, but I strongly recommend my host, Digital Pacific.
- get some information online – you can start with a very simple one-page site that explains who you are and how you cane contacted. You may be happy with that in the medium term, too, but it certainly gets you online while a full site is being developed.
- get your site designed – yes that means someone makes it all look nice but it may also mean getting the right programs in place to suit your business needs.
- add content to your website – content is critical if you want to get the right message to the right people, and if you want to do well with building your website traffic. Look through my blog for numerous examples of websites let down by poor content – I suggest you plan your content (we’ll cover this during the week, too, but make sure your key pages have great content from the start)
- let people know about your website – this is a big ‘task’ and will be ongoing for the life of your site, but there are some simple starting points to action straight away
Does a website seem a little less intimidating when there are only 6 steps? remember that you can (and probably should for many of the steps) get help with the actual implementation of each step.
As a website without a host is pretty hard to manage, the next in this series will be on hosting…