In today’s business world, having a website is essential. More and more customers are using the internet to find the products and services they need, which means that if you don’t have a website, you’re missing out on potential business. It may seem overwhelming to create a website for your business but it doesn’t have to be. Follow these simple steps and you’ll have a website up and running in no time.
When building a small business website, one of the first decisions you will need to make is choosing a domain name. Your domain name is your website’s address on the internet such as yourcompanyname.com. While it may seem like a minor detail, your domain name can have a significant impact on your business. Here are a few tips to help you choose the right domain name for your small business.
First, keep it short and simple. A long or complicated domain name will be difficult for customers to remember and may deter them from visiting your site. Second, make sure it is relevant to your business. A domain name that is unrelated to your business will be confusing for customers and make it harder for them to find your site. Finally, consider using keywords in your domain name. Including relevant keywords will help customers find your site more easily and may even improve your search engine ranking.
Use a domain name checker to see if the domain name you want is available.
By following these tips, you can choose a domain name that will help your small business succeed.
WordPress is the most popular platform for building websites. As of October 2022, over 42% of all websites are built using WordPress. It is highly customizable and that’s what we’ve been using for the majority of our client’s websites. WordPress does require a little more work to set up and maintain but it is definitely worth it because it’s open source which means you can customize it and host it wherever you want.
If you are wanting something less complex to set up, consider using an all-in-one web design platform such as Wix for informational websites or Shopify for creating an online store if you’re planning to sell online. These platforms include templates and hosting so they can be easier to set up but you are limited in options and customization.
If you want a WordPress website that is less hassle, check out Elementor Cloud with hosting built-in. Elementor is a drag-and-drop page builder and is the website builder that we use for most of our clients’ sites and is highly customizable.
If you decide to use a platform such as Wix, Shopify, or Elementor Cloud you can skip this section because hosting is included in the platform.
Hosting is where your website will live on the internet. There are many different web hosting companies to choose from, so do some research to find one that’s right for you.
Choosing a hosting company for your business website is an important decision. There are many factors to consider, including price, features, uptime, and customer support. Once you’ve narrowed down your options, it’s important to read reviews and compare pricing.
When it comes to features, most hosting companies offer similar basics, such as unlimited storage and bandwidth, and support for popular applications like WordPress. However, some companies offer more advanced features, such as SSL certificates and malware protection. It’s important to choose a company that offers the features you need.
Uptime is another important factor to consider when choosing a hosting company. Uptime is the percentage of time that a server is online and operational. You should look for a company that offers at least 99% uptime. Anything less than that means your website could be inaccessible during peak times.
Finally, customer support is an important consideration when choosing a hosting company. Look for companies that offer 24/7 customer support via phone or live chat. This way, you can get help anytime you need it.
Be sure to compare features such as support, speed, security, and backup services before making your decision. If you are using WordPress as your platform, it’s better to use a hosting service that specializes in WordPress and offers free security scans and Malware cleanup in case your website is hacked. Since WordPress is OpenSource and so popular, there is a greater risk of Malware. However, this can be minimized as long as you keep your website up to date and are selective in choosing WordPress plugins.
By keeping these factors in mind, you can choose the best hosting company for your business website.
Once you have your hosting account, install WordPress. Most WordPress hosting companies make this simple to do.
If you are using a platform such as Wix or Shopify, select the template that resembles closely to the design that you have in mind then customize it by adding your logo and colors. I recommend designing the home page first and then modeling the other pages after the first.
For WordPress, you have many options for designing your website. For this post, I’m going to try to make it as simple as possible and include only the most popular options.
You may be wondering whether you should use Gutenberg blocks or a page builder such as Elementor. Both have their pros and cons, so it’s important to weigh your options before making a decision.
Blocks are the default option for creating pages and posts in WordPress. When Gutenberg was first introduced in 2018, the block editing options were limited but now with the release of other blocks such as Kadance Blocks, Generate Blocks, and Spectra you can do most anything using a block editor.
Elementor is a popular WordPress page builder that allows you to create custom page layouts without having to code or hire a web developer. Elementor has both a free and premium version; however, the free version includes all of the features that most small businesses need to create a beautiful website.
One advantage of using Elementor is that it’s very user-friendly and easy to learn. Even if you’re not familiar with WordPress, you should be able to figure out how to use Elementor fairly easily. Lastly, Elementor includes tons of different templates and design elements that you can use to create professional-looking pages with just a few clicks.
Both Gutenberg blocks and Elementor page builder have their own set of advantages and disadvantages; we’re currently still using Elementor for the majority of our sites but I see a lot of potential with blocks and may be using them more in the future. Ultimately the decision comes down to personal preference; so, I recommend trying out both options before making your final decision.
WordPress is one of the most popular site-building and content-management systems in use today. Part of the reason for its popularity is the vast array of themes available for WordPress sites. With so many choices, it can be difficult to know how to select a WordPress theme that is right for your site. Here are a few tips to help you choose a theme that will give your WordPress site the look and feel you want.
First, consider the purpose of your site. Are you creating a personal blog or an online portfolio? Are you building an e-commerce site or a website for a business? The answer to this question will help you narrow down the field of available themes.
Next, take some time to browse through the themes that are available in your chosen category. Pay attention to the overall design and layout of each theme. Is the navigation easy to use? Is the font legible? Do the colors create a pleasing aesthetic?
Finally, think about any special features or functionality that you may need for your site. For example, if you are selling products online, you will need a theme that includes integration with a shopping cart system. Alternatively, if you are displaying a lot of images on your site, you may want to choose a theme with built-in gallery features. By taking all of these factors into account, you can be sure to choose a WordPress theme that is right for your needs.
If you’re planning to use Gutenburg, I recommend using a popular theme such as Generate Press or Kadance. If you’re going to be using Elementor page builder, then Hello and Astra are good options. Hello, Astra, and Generate Press are the themes we use most often for our clients’ websites.
In today’s digital world, potential customers are more likely to find you through a web search than in person. That’s why it’s essential to make sure that your website is well-written and informative. Here are a few tips to help you create content for your small business website.
Create an outline of the pages that you want to include then decide on any subpages you want to include if any. For example:
- Service 1
- Service 2
- Location 1
- Location 2
Next start writing content for each of your pages. I have found this to be the most difficult part of website creation for many of our clients but there are new AI tools that can make this process easier. My favorite tool for website content creation is Jasper which uses artificial intelligence to assist in writing. AI tools can help with writer’s block but you definitely need to edit and fact-check for accuracy.
Consider your audience. What kind of information are they looking for? Make sure that your content is relevant and targeted to their needs.
Second, keep it concise. Web users have short attention spans, so it’s important to get your point across quickly and efficiently.
Third, use keywords judiciously. You want your site to be easily found by potential customers, but including too many keywords can make your content sound spammy. Use keywords sparingly and only when they genuinely add to the meaning of your sentence.
Finally, proofread and grammar check and check to make sure your content is original. I use Copyscape to check for duplicate content. Take the time to proofread your content carefully before you publish it.
When it comes to creating a website for your business, one of the most important considerations is choosing the right photos. After all, images are often the first thing that visitors will notice, and they can play a pivotal role in making a good impression.
So how do you choose the right photos for your site? One of the best ways is to start by considering your audience. What kind of image do you want to project? Do you want to appear modern and cutting-edge, or warm and approachable? Once you have a clear idea of the overall tone you want to set, you can start looking for specific photos that fit that vision. Another key consideration is the size and orientation of your photos. Make sure that they’re large enough to be noticeable but not so large that they slow down your site’s loading time.
We recommend using actual photos of your team and location. You can take high-quality photos with most cell phones that will work on a website because the image resolution only needs to be 72 dpi.
If you don’t want to use actual photos, there are several stock photography websites available. We use Envato Elements and Deposit Photos for many of our projects. Pexels is another popular image website. Never use an image on your website without permission.
Once you have all of your content and photos organized, it’s time to start building out the pages of your website. I find it helpful to look for sites for inspiration or start with a template. Most themes and page builders have starter templates. We use Envato Elements WordPress Template Kits and blocks as a starting point.
Design your home page first then create templates based on your home page. The header and footer should be consistent throughout the site so save those as templates to be reused.
Important: Check the design of your site on mobile before moving forward. Elementor and Blocks have options that allow you to view and customize your pages for mobile.
Next, create all of your other pages. Yoast makes a Duplicate Post plugin that creates a copy of your pages. Then all you need to do is rename the new page and replace the content and photos.
Testing your website on mobile devices is an essential step in the development process. Mobile users expect a different experience than desktop users, so it’s important to make sure your site is optimized for smaller screens and touchscreens. Some page builders such as Elementor have mobile responsive design built in so you can change mobile elements and test while you’re building the site.
Once you have built out your website, it’s a good idea to test everything again and look at it on multiple devices and cell phones and correct any issues that you see.
Once you are confident that everything is working correctly, it’s time to launch your website. Your hosting company should be able to guide you through the process but basically all you need to do is remove any passwords and point the A record of your domain name to the IP address of your website.
Once the domain name is pointed, install SSL (secure sockets layers) which can be done through most hosting companies.
One of the most important things you can do to promote your website is to make sure it is optimized for search engines like Google and Bing. This includes adding relevant keywords to your site’s titles and content as well as setting up Google Analytics so you can track your progress over time.
If you’re using WordPress, Google has a plugin named Site Kit that makes it easy to connect your website to Google Search Console, Analytics, and Page Speed Insights.
There are various SEO tools and software options available to help you research keywords and optimize your content for search. We use the RankMath plugin for search engine optimization and Surfer SEO for content optimization
Regular website maintenance is essential particularly for WordPress and WordPress plugins because updates are released on a regular basis.
You should also keep your website up-to-date with fresh content if you want people to keep coming back. A good rule of thumb is to add new blog posts or other types of content at least once per month or more often depending on your business.
Creating a website for your business doesn’t have to be difficult or expensive—and it’s definitely worth the effort! By following these steps, you’ll have a professional-looking website up and running in no time that will help you attract new customers and grow your business.
If you’re busy and don’t have the time to create your own website, check out our website packages, or if you’re looking for something custom let us know.