As a business owner, it’s hard to juggle all the tasks of creating and sustaining a successful business, factor in the technical aspect of website design it could be daunting to make your own website. However, web design doesn’t have to be difficult, with these 7 easy website basics you can create a website that effectively represents your business and attracts customers. This comprehensive guide will walk you through everything you need to know, from choosing a domain name to designing an attractive and user-friendly layout. Whether you are a novice or have experience with website design this guide will provide you with the essential website basics that every website should have.
1. Choose a domain name
The first step in building a website is choosing your domain name. The domain name is the web address people will use to access your site, so it’s important to choose one that’s easy to remember and relevant to your business. You should also know there is a difference in domain endings such as .com, .net, and .org. For example .com is traditionally for commercial businesses, while .net is for networking technologies, and .org is typically used for non-profit organizations.
As a small business the best option is to choose a .com domain as it’s the easiest for customers to remember. Avoid using acronyms or abbreviations, long domains, and hyphens or numbers. It’s best to choose your business name if the domain is available that way you can ensure your customer will find your website.
2. Selecting a hosting site
Once you have secured a domain that’s easy to remember the next step in website basics is to select a hosting site. When selecting a hosting provider, consider factors such as reliability, customer support, and pricing. It’s also important to choose a hosting plan that can accommodate the needs of your website, such as the amount of traffic you expect to receive. There are many hosting providers out there, and many of them have hidden fees especially if your website becomes compromised. It’s important to do your due diligence in researching these hosting providers to select the correct one.
If you have hosting questions it’s best to work with a digital agency that specializes in website design and development to help guide your decision. At YouWho we work with hosting providers who do not have hidden fees, have low yearly costs, and provide a high level of security to your site. By carefully selecting a domain name and hosting provider, you can set a strong foundation for your website’s success.
3. Choose a content management system (CMS)
Once you have the first two website basics in place the next step is to determine what content management system (CMS) you plan to use for your website build. There are a number of options available, but when we are talking about website basics it’s best to choose a builder that will make designing a website easy.
WordPress is the most popular option that offers many drag and drop templates that make building a website easy. However, for the novice builder WordPress may present some challenges because there are so many options. For a website design agency like ourselves we typically choose to build on WordPress as it allows us to build UX-friendly websites that are optimized for SEO.
For small business owners, just getting started with website basics building a site on Wix or Squarespace may be a better option. These options offer easy to use website builders at a low cost. Shopify is another good avenue to build a website on if your company specializes in e-commerce.
As we cautioned with domain hosting, it’s important to ensure you understand exactly what the CMS is providing and don’t have any hidden fees as you continue your website build. If you have specific questions about website CMS basics, reach out.
4. Design a user-friendly and visually appealing website
Now that you have the organizational website basics down, the fun part of building the website begins. When designing your website, it’s important to keep the user experience in mind. The customer needs to be able to easily navigate the website with clear points of contact, with a focus on intuitive flow and design. Consider the layout and organization of your content, making sure it’s easy for visitors to find what they’re looking for.
Another good tip is to make sure you are paying attention to the visual appeal of your website including high-quality images and graphics that are relevant to your business. Including photos from past projects, staff members, and local photos are a great place to start. You can even hire a content marketing agency to take professional photos and videos that become evergreen content that can be utilized on your website.
Remember to optimize your website for mobile devices as well, because today over 51.52% of people are accessing the internet through their smartphones and tablets. By designing a user-friendly and visually appealing website, you can attract and retain visitors, ultimately driving the success of your business.
5. Optimize your website for search engines
One of the most critical aspects of building a successful website is optimizing it for search engines. Think of when you “google” something online and the results come up, you want to ensure your website organically ranks at the top of that list. While this is a more technical aspect of website development, it is possible to optimize your website for SEO by using our website basics tips.
Start by conducting keyword research to identify the terms and phrases that your target audience is searching for, as well as research what your competitors are ranking for. Incorporate these keywords naturally into your website’s content, including in your page titles, headings, and meta descriptions. Additionally, make sure your website has a clear and organized structure, with easy-to-read URLs and a sitemap that helps search engines crawl and index your pages. Finally, consider building backlinks from reputable websites, as this can improve your website’s authority and visibility in search results.
This is another aspect of website design where it pays to do your research. Oftentimes agencies will advertise SEO services for penny’s on the dollar which lead to black hat SEO tactics that could create more harm than good. Make sure you work with an agency who specializes in these services and isn’t selling a spammy overseas product.
6. Create high-quality and engaging content
One of the most important aspects of building a successful website is creating high-quality and engaging content. Your content should be informative, valuable, and relevant to your target audience. This will not only attract visitors to your website but also keep them engaged and coming back for more. Consider using a variety of content formats such as blog posts, videos, infographics, and being a guest on podcasts. By consistently creating high-quality and engaging content, you can establish yourself as an authority in your industry and attract more visitors to your website.
Creating high-quality content that is engaging on your website allows you to build credibility with potential customers as your website is likely their first look at what you offer. If you come across as a professional from the start that will lead to future sales.
7. Implement effective call-to-actions
The last piece of our website basics is creating an effective call-to-action (CTA). A CTA is a crucial element of any website. It is a prompt that encourages visitors to take a specific action, such as signing up for a newsletter, making a purchase, or contacting your business. To implement effective CTAs, make sure they are clear, concise, and visually appealing. Use action verbs and create a sense of urgency to motivate visitors to act.
Place CTAs strategically throughout your website, such as in the header, sidebar, and at the end of blog posts. Additionally, consider using different types of CTAs, such as buttons, pop-ups, or inline text links, to cater to different user preferences. Regularly test and optimize your CTAs to maximize their effectiveness and drive conversions on your website.
Website Basics – wrap up
While creating a website on your own may seem like a daunting task, if you utilize these 7 effective website basics tips you are sure to set your website up for success. A lot of website design is trial and error, so if it isn’t correct the first time keep trying! If you’d like to work with our team that specializes in building websites for small businesses give us a call. We’d love to work on your next website project.