Determine your website goals
The key to developing a good small business website is to determine the goals of the website first. Here is a handy list of 6 steps you can take to help you get a better small business website. Write down as many answers as possible to these steps and then you can use this valuable list when you have your business website developed. If you already have a website for your business, use your answers to evaluate it and see if it matches up with your goals.
1. Why do you want a website?
It might sound obvious but a lot of business owners don’t think much about why they want a website beyond just needing one (and we agree that you really should have a website for your small business). Here are some of the things you might want a website for:
- An online presence for your business to complement offline advertising such as newspaper or TV advertising
- Generating leads for your business, even outside of normal business hours
- Informational to help customers find out more about your business products and services
- Sell your products online
- Great for Business to Business (B2B), especially for interstate and international.
2. Who is your target audience?
Knowing your audience is one of the most important parts of setting up an effective website for your business. Content is the most important part of any good website so you should be setting the content tone according to your audience. Knowing your audience will also help in deciding on your website design and architecture.
3. Why would visitors come to your website?
The internet is a great research tool. Customers know this and often use the internet as an easy way to research products or services before making a purchasing decision. Other visitors might be wanting information on how to do something so you might put up answers to these questions or helpful fact-sheets.
By thinking about why visitors would come to your site you can start to think about how your website will fulfil that need.
4. What are you going to offer visitors to your website?
Your website should not only look great but also be easy to navigate. Visitors should be easily able to find what they are looking for and be able to see your contact details if they need to get in touch. You might want to offer visitors a special deal or some great tips relating to your products or services.
By offering your visitors value they will be more likely to buy your products or services and return to your website again.
5. What do you want visitors to do on your website?
Every website should have goals established so you can measure its effectiveness. For example, an Ecommerce website would be focussed on making sales but you might also want visitors to also subscribe to your newsletter for repeat sales. By knowing that you want to grow your email subscribers you can make sure your website is setup to do this, make subscribing easy to find, and make the whole process quick.
Work out what you want visitors to do on your website and make sure that process is as easy as possible.
6. How will visitors find your website?
Build it and they will come…well not exactly.
Website visitors will usually be coming to your website via one of two methods – either directly (typing in your website address directly in to their browser) or via search. It is important to know how you think visitors will find your website so that you can match your marketing efforts accordingly.
If you want visitors to find your website via Google search (the most common way to get visitors) then you need to think about search engine optimisation (SEO). If your business has a lot of competition in search results then you might want to consider running Google ads via a search engine marketing campaign (SEM). These ads appear at the top and side of search results and you pay when someone clicks on your ad.
Alternatively, you might be expecting visitors to come to your website directly by typing in your website link into their browser. If this is the case then you need to think about including your website address in all of your marketing material e.g. newspaper, signage, tv, flyers etc.
If you have a good understanding of the who, what, why and how of your website then you are well on your way to a better business website.
If your business is based on the Sunshine Coast and you want some great local advice on how to setup your business website contact 46digital for a free quote.