Whether you are opening your own restaurant, owner of a small boutique, or a freelance photographer, having a professional website is essential for your business’s success. One of the first things customers do when they want to know more about your business is to do a quick online search. A great website is important because it informs audiences about your business, boosts brand awareness, and helps to drive sales. Here are a few steps you can take to create a professional website for your business.
Determine the Purpose of Your Website
It may seem like an obvious question, but one of the most important things you need to know first is what you want your website to accomplish. Are you planning to use it as a platform to sell goods? Are you simply looking to provide information about your business? Knowing the purpose of your website will help you build a site that best serves your customers and provides them with a positive experience.
Identify Your Target Audience
Figuring out your target audience will help you design a website that is specific to that audience. It might influence the color scheme you choose or the images you present on your site. Understanding the demographics of your audience is key in designing a website that is both professional and effective.
Obtain a Domain Name
Your domain name, also known as your website address, is the entrance to your website. Therefore, you want to choose a domain name that is easy to remember, easy to find, and is user friendly. Here are some helpful tips when choosing a domain name:
- Make sure it is easy to spell.
- Keep it as short as possible.
- Try to make it a .com domain name, as opposed to .net or something similar. (Unless it needs to be .gov, .edu, .org)
- Avoid numbers and hyphens
- Choose something memorable
- Choose something that is SEO friendly
Choose a Web Hosting Company
Every website needs a host, or a server where all of its data is stored. A website hosting provider is a company that offers the technology and services necessary to allow your website to be viewed on the internet. Hosting services vary greatly in price depending on the kind of technology support you choose. You want to choose a hosting provider that not only fits your budget, but also offers the services and support you need.
Build Your Pages
A good website is more than just a flashy homepage. You want to create multiple pages dedicated to different aspects of your business. Much like a powerpoint presentation, you want to make sure your pages are easy to read, don’t have too much text, include powerful graphics or images, and are easy to navigate. Of course, you want your website to support your primary goals, has a clear purpose, and includes a call to action.