How to spec out a website build for your business

eventplanner7You know that you want a website for your business, but have you actually given some thought to what you’d like the website to do? Interactive and multi-functional websites are the way forward, but with so many options, it can be difficult to decide what’s important to your business and what’s just for decoration.

Plan Ahead

Think about what you need the site to do for you right now, and what you’d like in the future. That way, you can make plans even if you don’t do everything at once. If you want to be able to sell products online, you need to make sure that your site is designed with that in mind, even if it’s not something you want to do straight away, otherwise you’ll end up having to design two sites instead of simply upgrading your existing one.

Communication

Blogs and news functions are important, whether you like the idea or not. It’s not just a case of showing off to people about your latest customer comments; keeping a website refreshed with up to date content is one of the best ways to keep Google on side, and an easy way to do that is by regularly updating your blog or news page.

Do you have a mailing list of clients that you would like to stay in touch with? A mailing list is a great way to do this. It’s relatively simple to integrate software into your website that will capture email addresses, and in which you can design email promotions, updates and newsletters (just make sure you have people’s permission before you add them to any mailing list manually; you don’t want to fall foul of the Data Protection Act or be accused of spamming people.)

Sales

If you’re selling your products on your website, think about the payment process – it’s best to make it as quick and simple as possible if you want people to keep coming back. Find software or a plug-in that will integrate easily into your site, and decide whether you want to accept PayPal (people love to be able to click and buy instead of typing in a card number every time.)

Think about how you want to promote your products, too. Will you be selling all of your products from one page, splitting them into different sections of the website, or giving each product a page of its own? Have you thought about adding in related products to a sales page, so that just before the customer buys the gadget, they are reminded to buy batteries, for example?

Maintenance

Do you plan to maintain your own website? If so, it could be worth considering a platform like WordPress for your site rather than a custom made CSS – an intuitive system that most people will be able to pick up and learn quickly is cost-effective as it needs very little training and anyone can then log in and edit/add a page if your designated staff member is off sick, leaves the company or just isn’t around.

 

Costs

Don’t just think about the set up costs of your site – yes, they are likely to be your biggest investment, but you also need to consider running costs, so look into the prices for hosting the site, how much it costs for email, newsletter plug-ins, payment platforms…these things all add up and while they are all necessary, you do need to factor these costs in for the future.

A little planning now will make all the difference when your site is up and running.

 

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SEOmers is known locally as the Ipswich SEO and Marketing Company. We're known for straight talking, no fluff approach about website performance. If you would like a chat about your website, please do get in touch on "01473 760140". Although we now service global clients, our roots are still very much focused as a local digtal marketing company based in Ipswich.

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