In today’s digital age, every small business needs a website. Your website is often the first point of contact between you and your potential customers, so it’s important to make a good impression.
Luckily, building a great website doesn’t have to be complicated or expensive. Check out the key steps below to get started.
How to Build a Small Business Website in 5 Easy Steps
1. Choose the right domain name.
Choosing the right domain name is one of the key steps to building a great small business website.
Here are some tips to help you choose a domain name that will work well for your business:
- Keep it short and sweet. A domain name that’s too long will be difficult for people to remember and type. Aim for something that’s around 10 characters or less.
- Make it easy to spell and pronounce. Again, you want people to be able to remember and type your domain name with ease. Stay away from anything that’s too confusing or hard to spell.
- Use keywords that describe your business. Including keywords in your domain name can help people find your site more easily when they’re searching online. However, don’t stuff your domain name with too many keywords – this will just make it look spammy.
- Avoid using hyphens and numbers. Hyphens can be tricky for people to remember, and numbers can be confusing (are you spelling out the number or using the numerical digit?). It’s best to stick with letters only.
- Check to see if the domain name is available. Once you’ve come up with a few possibilities, do a quick search online to see if the domain names are already taken. If they are, you’ll need to come up with something else.
2. Find a reliable web host.
Your web host is the company that will provide server space for your website. When you’re looking for a web host, there are a few things to keep in mind:
- Price: Obviously, you’ll want to find a web host that’s affordable. However, don’t just go for the cheapest option – make sure they offer features that are important to you, such as unlimited bandwidth and storage space.
- Reliability: You don’t want your website going down because your web host can’t handle the traffic. Do some research to find a web host that’s known for being reliable.
- Customer Support: If you have any problems with your website, you’ll want to be able to get help from your web host quickly. Look for a company that offers 24/7 customer support.
3. Choose a platform for your website.
Once you’ve found a domain name and web host, it’s time to choose a platform for your website.
When choosing a platform, consider your budget, technical skills, and the features you need.
For example, Squarespace is a popular platform that is easy to use but can be more expensive than other options. Wix, on the other hand, is a more affordable platform but can be less user-friendly. There are also some open-source platforms, such as WordPress, that are free to use but require a bit more technical know-how.
Whichever platform you choose, make sure it’s one that you’re comfortable using.
4. Design your website.
Now it’s time to start building your website! If you’re not a designer, don’t worry – there are plenty of resources available to help you create a beautiful site.
If you’re using WordPress, we recommend choosing a theme that’s responsive (meaning it will look good on mobile devices), and that includes features you need, such as a contact form or e-commerce functionality. Once you’ve chosen a theme, take some time to add your own logo, images, and content to make your website unique.
5. Promote your website.
Just because your website is live doesn’t mean people will automatically find it. You need to promote your site to get traffic, and there are many different ways to do this:
- Search Engine Optimization: SEO helps your website show up in search engine results when people are searching for keywords related to your business. There’s a lot to learn about SEO, but there are plenty of resources available to help you get started.
- Content Marketing: Creating high-quality content (blog posts, infographics, videos, etc.) can help attract visitors to your website and encourage them to share your content with their friends and followers.
- Social Media: Promoting your website on social media is a great way to generate traffic and build relationships with potential and current customers. Make sure you create content that’s shareable, and that you post regularly to keep people engaged.
6. Invest in security
If you will collect sensitive information (such as credit card numbers) from your website visitors, it’s important to invest in security.
Look for a web host that offers SSL encryption, and make sure your payment pages are secure (you can usually tell by the URL – if it starts with “https://”, that means it’s secure). Doing so will help give your customers peace of mind, and will help keep your website safe from hackers.
A great website is key for any small business in today’s digital age—but luckily, building one doesn’t have to be complicated or expensive if you know what steps to take!
With proper project planning and execution, you can create a website that’s both user-friendly and effective at promoting your business. Just do the key steps we have outlined above, and follow a few security tips specially designed for startups, and you’ll be well on your way to creating a small business website that works for you and your customers!