Any small business that does not have a website is losing business as you read this. Recent statistics show that small businesses lose 70% to 80% of potential customers if they do not have a website. This is because people no longer go to most businesses without doing the bare minimum research first.
At the very least, your business needs a website that expresses who you are, what you do, where you can be found, and how to get in touch. It does not need to sell your service or product online if that’s impractical or not relevant. It simply needs to give you an online presence.
When building your website, there are fundamental decisions to make which will impact your success as a business in 2021. These are the top 5 things to consider.
1. Your domain name
A domain name is the most fundamental aspect of your branding. Today, your business’s name should be based on the best domain name available, rather than the other way around. It needs to be catchy, use terms which are extremely relevant to what you do, and it needs to be original.
In other words, using a name which sounds great but doesn’t tell customers what your business does will lose you clients. So too will having a name that is too similar to a competitor.
Once you have come up with a domain name that reads great and is not taken, you can go ahead and buy it. If you’re using a website builder like Wix, domain purchase can be done through their platform and you can save money and time while connecting your chosen domain name to your website design theme.
2. Your core message
When a person lands on your website, your core message should be one of the first things they see. This will tell them if they have come to the right place to solve their problem. If it is unclear what you do, they are not going to spend long trying to figure it out. The statistics show that it takes visitors only fifty milliseconds to form an opinion about your website.
If there are no other search results that meet their needs, they might stick around. Otherwise, they’ll move on to one of the other options.
To decide on your core message, think about what kind of customers you are trying to target. You should show them that you are meeting their needs, rather than something more general. So, if you are selling shoes to people with special needs, don’t give the message that you are a footwear company.
3. Your social media strategy
What does your social media strategy have to do with building your website? The purpose of your website will be strongly connected to how you market yourself on social media.
If your social media pages will have lots of info, engagement, pictures of products, and easy contactability, your website does not need to do much more than show who you are and point to your socials. However, if you don’t plan on spending much time or money on social media, your website needs to carry a lot more of the load.
Think about this before you work on your website for too long. You don’t want to waste hours on a complex website you only plan to use as a landing page.
4. Your logo
Visuals are incredibly important when branding your business. Vision is the sense we use most to interpret the world around us. Even if we have mastered language as a species, we are still simple in that images catch our eyes.
For this reason, you should not neglect your logo. Not everyone is all that accomplished at design, and you may think you don’t have an eye for it. However, you know better than anyone how to represent your business. And with modern online tools, you don’t need any web design skills.
Create a logo that captures what your company does with a bit of flair. You will use this logo as your website’s icon, in your email signature, and on your letterheads.
5. Your contact forms
A simple contact form is perfect for any business website. However, that does not mean you shouldn’t give too much thought to this page. Rather, you need to decide where you want these messages to go and who will be responsible for replying to them.
You don’t need to reply to all your messages immediately or within a day. But you should tell visitors how long they should expect to wait. They should know the best way of getting in touch when they urgently need help. All of this information should be available in the contact section of your website.
Building a business website is not rocket science. However, it will make or break your business in 2021.