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One of the first steps to building any type of brand involves creating a website. Why though? With most of the world being active on social media (roughly 40% of the world’s population to be exact), it may seem like creating a website is a waste of time. You couldn’t be more wrong. Creating a website is still one of the most important steps when building your small business (it makes your business feel legitimate) and a great way to manage your reputation (you don’t want critics and trolls buying your domain name); it’s still also one of the best ways to generate sales.
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Need a website? Keep reading to find out what’s worth considering when planning your little piece of the Internet.
Still haven’t settled on your business’ name? Good – make the decision based on your domain name. Your domain name should be short, reflective of your brand’s name, and memorable. ‘Tom’s-discount-lamporeum.net’ isn’t going to cut it no matter how much you love the name because nobody will remember the domain; ‘thediscountlampkingdom.com,’ works and is memorable.
There is no shame is copying what your competition is doing. Google keywords associated to your industry and browse the websites landing on the front page of the search results. What do they have in common? What seems to be working for them? Make note, and apply the results to your own website.
Why should someone visit your website? What do you want to achieve when they visit? From generating sales to using your website to get potential customers to call you on the phone, your website needs to have a clear goal besides for existing besides, ‘it’s what you’re supposed to do.’ It needs to be more useful than a glorified classified post ad, too. Use your website to grow your brand – and if you need to know how to do that, that’s what we’re here for.
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This isn’t the early 2000’s anymore: Flash is dead, simplicity is king. Besides, who wants to spend time on a website that doesn’t provide relevant information within the first minute anyway? There’s nothing novel about websites: if they look disorganized, people are going to leave.
Thus, it’s imperative that you keep your website as simplistic as possible. As soon as the homepage loads, viewers need to be able to know:
It sounds like a lot, but do your research as mentioned earlier. See how your competitors are including this information on their own front page, and discover how you can apply it to your own website.
We’re at a point where it’s a given that most people that visit your website will be doing so on their mobile device. Thus, it’s a no-brainer to build your website with a mobile-first mentality. Don’t exclude your desktop visitors, though: ensure your website scales for them, too. Build for mobile, scale for desktop, and everyone will be pleased with what you’ve built.
Who are you trying to appeal to? If you don’t know the answer, how can you possibly build a website that’s going to be beneficial to your brand? You can’t. Realize what your customers want, what they need, and create a website that lets them get it. Your website needs to solve problems, and you can only achieve this by knowing who you’re creating it for.
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