Basic Questions to ask Yourself before starting a web presence to ensure that you get the right site for you and gets results
What is your business ?
Do you need a website really?
What do you want to achieve ?
Do you understand what is required ?
Will you commit the required resources – money and time ?
What are your options based on required resources, including a platform and your ability to use it ?
Can you create a plan and do it in stages?
Who and where is your market ?
Do they use the web and why ?
How do they access the web ? Pc, Laptop, Tablet, Mobile ?
Would your customers benefit from your web presence and why ?
What will make you different or stand out?
Will your audience interact with you ?
Who will they talk to ?
Will they buy online ?
Will you use any Social Media channels ? Why ? Who will manage this on your behalf ? Which Channels do you need ?
Who else does what you do or offers what you offer ? How do they use the Web ?
Do you understand and accept that creating a web presence takes time and resources to build and then to manage and maintain ?
The good news is that going online can be a much lower investment than opening another Bricks & Mortar store for tens of thousands, but it will cost thousands, if it is to be a decent solution that will bring you returns. It will expand your market, reduce overheads and costs per sale, stay open 24/7, be easily managed, by the right person.
So whats the bad news ? There is none, other than remember this – Using an amateur can seriously damage your wealth. Partner with someone who can plan, design, develop, then market and maintain your web presence.
5 Dangers of NOT having a good web presence
1. A poor web presence will not be found when people browse the net looking for something, as in what you have to offer
2. A poor web presence will reflect badly on you, Shoppers see your web presence and it looks bad which is a turn off
3. A poor layout in your web presence will stop buyers from buying – lay it out well and test it continually
4. A poor web presence will send your potential customers away to a web presence that looks good and facilitates easy shopping
5. A poor web presence will highlight any failings you have in terms of price or customer support and fail to capitalise on potential good testimonials or case studies.
Many companies buy a website like it is some sort of commodity, like a printer or a bit of signage, rather than work with a Web Partner to develop a web presence that is easy to manage and continually looks good, delivers well across all platform and allow visitors find, then buy what is for sale.
A good web presence built on a solid CMS Content Management System such as WordPress or Joomla can work like a second outlet, treat it as such, rather than as some unimportant expense, like a company order pad or corporate floor mat. If you have a shop or office, do you ignore how it looks or what people think of it ?
Do NOT leave your Web Presence to someone who is not Web Savvy, especially the Boss !
What are the stages of creating a good web presence?
Find a reputable Web Partner with the right proven experience and the resulting positive Testimonials.
Then the 6 main stages of creating a website are:
1. Project Manager defines the brief with the Client, pages required, layout etcWhat are the stages of creating a good web presence
2. Designer creates the Website Design for approval
3. Coder produces the front end code from the agreed website design
4. Developer makes the Front End work with the Back end and tests it
5. Content is added – supplied by Client, including text & images
6. SEO optimises the site for the search engines – it takes weeks to get indexed and months to get ranking.
Then the real work begins, as you try to promote your website to drive business.
A good web partner can do all six stages or better still can work with others for parts of the project, Clients can make that call. You may have a favoured graphic designer or developer or digital marketer, you want to include in the project.
Make sure that your Web Partner understands your business and your objectives as well as understanding the technology of the web and how to use it to drive business for you. Ideally it will be an ongoing fruitful relationship rather than a ‘one site stand’.
The spend on this should be paid from your normal marketing budget as you reduce your spend on old advertising methods. A good Web Partner will show you how you are benefitting from any spend, in a way that newspaper or radio does not do for you.