Are you looking to build a website for your business, or looking to tweak an existing under-performing website and give it some va-va-voom?
Then what you’re going to need is a plan; in other words, a carefully- considered and well-executed strategy that sets out the goals you want to achieve and a time-line for how you intend to achieve them. You might think that having such a plan would be constricting and might compromise creativity, but that needn’t be the case. Plans are only as constricting as you make them. What’s important is that you put in the leg work before hand and plan and research thoroughly. If you do this then you’re far more likely to finish up with an effective and successful optimal website. So, how do you go about it?
So, how do you design an optimal website?
Well, you’ll be glad to hear that there’s no rocket science involved in this strategy: all you’ll need to do is follow the 4 simple rules of website design: establish what your niche market is, develop your business plan, come up with a memorable domain name and find the perfect web host for the site. Simples.
Finding a niche in the market.
There’s no point entering a market that is already saturated, unless, of course, you’ve got money to burn. Who enters a saturated market? Well unfortunately more than you might think. The truth is if an established company has already cornered the market for a particular product or service, you’ll be wasting your time trying to compete unless you can offer something of equal value that’s radically different.
If this is the case, and your market is already saturated, then you’ll need to focus on a specific niche sector within the general market. Specialisation is the key to a successful business. Of course identifying this ‘niche’ is only the starting point: you’ll also need to be satisfied that there’s a demand for what you’re offering. There’s no point publicising a website that offers a highly specialised service repairing and restoring transistor radios, when the rest of the world has switched to digital. It will die on its knees. Websites will only ever be successful if they can offer a service that’s in demand.
Produce and develop your business plan.
All successful businesses have plans: they know where they’re going, and crucially, they know how they’re going to get there. Websites are no different. If you only have a rough or vague idea of what you want to achieve, then you’ll probably make mistakes somewhere down the line. Unfortunately experience shows that this will probably be sooner, rather than later. What if your business is struggling to develop its plan? Well, then the best thing to do is put off the design and use some of the online resources that can help and provide you with a wealth of information and focus.
Choosing a domain name.
Why is this so important? Well, domain names are essentially your business’s first point of contact with potential customers. They can either make or break a business. It’s vital, therefore, that your domain name performs and adds value to your business.
Domain names need to be:
- Short and sweet, and unique if at all possible
- Describe what your business or website does
- Be easy to pronounce and interpret
- Be memorable – this is, without a doubt, the most important point of all
Choosing a high quality web hosting service.
In life you generally only get what you pay for. Well, it’s the same with web hosts too. If you’re really serious about getting an optimal website for your business, then there’s really no substitute for using a dedicated web server. Yes, it will be more costly than a shared server, but you will get better value for your money. Many shared web servers offer a relatively poor service: obviously there are exceptions, but by and large they tend not to deliver.