Which Points You Should Look for Making A Website for Small Business
Irrespective of whether you are an owner of a small business who is looking to build a website on your own, or a freelancer who specializes in making websites for small businesses, the steps laid down in this article will make a huge difference between leading to revolutionizing business success and a complete utter mess.
Define the Goals of Your Website
Before you start, both your client and you should know the purpose that the website will serve the business with.
What message you want the visitors to get from your website? And what makes up for the absolute key information that a potential customer should get about the business?
Have a conversation with your client and find out the background of the business. Find out what kind of marketing activities they are engaging in to grow their business. Having a new website is a huge step during the evolution of a business – however, the role the website plays during the evolution can be very different between an ecommerce store and a brick and mortar store.
The client may have already established a brand, complete with color, logo and other important guidelines. You may get more freedom with a newer business that is still in the process of forming their branding.
Go through their website with them if they already have one. Review all the pages with the client, taking notes on which parts of the current design will be retained and what will need to be changed, both from your perspective and theirs.
Also, be sure to know if they are looking to hosting a blog or want content that may be dynamic in nature.
Know What Platform Is Being Used for Hosting
If the client is already running a website, see what platform it is hosted on and where it is hosted. You may be able to find out by yourself and if not, ask.
It may be difficult to create a fully customized design because the platform may lock you into a template.
Most of the clients would like you to have full freedom to use your creativity to the fullest in building the website – and a lot of them will even be yearning to be freed from the current platform their website is hosted on. Then there may be the ones who have invested their time and energy in learning their platform inside out which makes them reluctant in switching platforms. You may have to confine your ideas to the current platform in the latter case.
Either way, it is good to understand the limitations that you may face before you pitch your design concepts to the client.
Highlight What Is Important
The existing website may not be terrible, but it may be outdated. The content may be dry, impersonal and focussed on the details of the company’s programs instead of the most meaningful aspects of the company, the impact they have around them.
When creating new content for the website, focus on the most meaningful aspects of the organization that the customers care about. Instead of being sterile and cold, it should capture the spirit of the organization and it’s on the society.
While designing a site for small business, there is an elevated need to figure out the most important aspects of the business. Very often, it may be emotional charged, and this can help a lot since people make their purchasing decisions and respond to market messages emotionally.
Whatever the focus areas turn out to be, bear them in mind as you design any part of website, from the pictures to the text to the interactions.
And do not create your own rosy picture of what you believe is the most important aspect of the business. Speak with your client to figure out what they see as value in their business and what their customers find important.
If your client sells cakes but is also famous for their cookies, make sure that this does not get pushed down to the bottom of the page.
Gather All Information Before You Write
Take note of key phrases used by your client when you are meeting with them and other stakeholders. Seek permission from your client to record the meetings.
You will find that they provide information in more informative and concise way in person that what you can gather from the documents sent to you.
Some clients may be fine with edits while others may look at them as personal attacks. Not involving them in the writing process will save you a lot of potential headache.
They can still contribute to the process of content creation. Ask them to provide you with bullet points pointing to what the content should be focusing on. This can be combined with your research and notes to help you write some excellent marketing content.
Know the Customers
When you are designing a website for a small business, it is very important that you understand who their customers are. Do your research to narrow down the demographics of your target market. Try to understand what their likings may be and what kind of a message they are likely to respond to.
Before you start any kind of design work or write any content, you need to understand who you are trying to reach. Getting to know the socioeconomic status, age range, and even ideology is going to help you in creating a website that connects with the customers.
It is almost certain that your client will have a strong sense of the demographics that they are targeting, but it is worth inspecting the demographic data that is provided by tools such as Facebook pages and Google Analytics to get a deeper sense of who is buying what from the boutique of products and services that your client is offering.
It is very important to have a feel of the expectations and goals of your client in order to ensure smooth execution of your website design project. Besides all above, the website security is an important factor that cannot be ignored and to do so, you need to purchase SSL certificate from reputed vendor like CheapSSLShop.com. SSL certificate encrypts ongoing data between the server and the browser.
Keeping all the relevant marketing content, media and other elements in one place will help you in launching sooner and ensure that you experience fewer problems. It is hard to improvise on a website design project while you are implementing – and there is a high chance of everything crashing to the ground, including the faith the customer has in you, if you have not prepared properly.