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In today’s world if your business does not have an online presence, it does not exist! It is your chance to make a lasting first impression on people, so it’s best to get that right from the get-go.

The steps I’m going to share with you are not rocket science but they still require a certain level of commitment and dedication. You don’t need to spend crazy amounts of money on your website but you need to at least get the fundamentals of your website right!

1. Purpose

The purpose of your website depends on the type of business that you have. Your website might be the main source of revenue for your business, or it might just be there to provide basic information because you have an offline business that relies on face to face interaction. The website purpose heavily dictates the type of platforms you will use (WordPress, Webflow, Shopify, Squarespace or a custom solution) and the type of content you are going to display.

Let’s say you are about to open a new restaurant, for example, the purpose of your website could be to:

  1. introduce the restaurant concept and brand story
  2. offer a “reservation” function
  3. gather customer reviews

Based on what your website is supposed to do you can now select which platform to build the website on. In this particular case, for example, WordPress could be a good option because you can easily get access to premium templates, plugins, and other assets that could be customised to your needs. It also offers many useful add-ons such as POS systems, inventory plugins, blog functions and others. That way you don’t have to reinvent the wheel and can use off-the-shelf solutions that will drastically lower the cost as well. Also, keep in mind what your website might become in the future and plan for it.

Great website content not only informs your target audience about your company or product, but it also helps you rank higher on search engines.

2. Content
I cannot stress enough how important quality content is for your website. It not only informs your target audience about your company or product, but it also helps you rank higher on search engines. How do you define great content though? Website content shouldn’t just be in tune with your tone of voice and branding, it should also be based on keyword research specific to your brand. That means that you know what people type into search engines to find businesses like yours and build your content around those specific keywords.
Images and visuals also play an important part. The best case scenario is always to have your own images that are unique to your brand instead of buying stock photos that have 0 personality and that a gazillion other companies use. If you don’t have your own images, consider using websites like Shutterstock, Unsplash or Pexels to find appropriate imagery.
3. SEO Basics
As mentioned above, content plays a huge part in your SEO rankings. Now, I’m not expecting you to have a perfect SEO score right from the start but there are a few things you can do to cover the most crucial aspects of SEO.
  1. Have a professional perform keyword research and build your content around those keywords.
  2. Cover the technical aspect of SEO on your website. This can be done by installing SEO plugins such as Google Analytics, All In One SEO or Yoast SEO.
  3. Create a sitemap. This helps search engines find different pages on your site.
  4. Install an SSL certificate. This shows your website as “secure”. If you don’t have that it’ll impact your search engine results in a negative way.
  5. Build backlinks from other websites. This also helps search engines understand that your website is legit and not spam. The more links the better.
  6. Track your SEO success. You obviously want to know how you’re performing and make plans based on those results.
4. Support

If you are not a tech-savvy person you should have a professional do at least basic maintenance for your website, e.g. weekly backups, software updates, content updates etc. This will ensure that your website works well, is secure and can easily be restored in case anything goes wrong.

5. Optimise
Now that your website is up and running you can optimise and work on performance. Loading speed, for example, is an important factor to consider because it can greatly affect a user’s experience. Also, making sure that your website is mobile-friendly is important in today’s world since most users access websites on their mobile devices.

The process of building a website can be an overwhelming one but it doesn’t have to be. Of course, the process always depends on the complexity of your project but if you cover the above you should be in a good place. I hope the above list will help you on your journey to creating stunning websites for your business.

Alexander Danelia

Author Alexander Danelia

Alexander is the Founder and Creative Director at Titans Design.

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