Table of Contents Hide
- Building a Business Website: Overview
- Building a Business Website in 2022: 9 Simple Steps
- #1. Identify the Major Goal of Your Website
- #2. Choose a Domain Name
- #3. Select a Web Host
- #4. Create Your Pages
- #5. Set up Your Payment System
- #6. Put Your Website Through Its Paces and Publish It
- #7. Use Social Media to Promote Your Website
- #8. Make an Investment in Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
- #9. Keep Your Website Updated
- How Much Does It Cost to Start Your Own Business Website?
- Building a Business Website Free
- Building a Business Webiste FAQs
- What is the best platform to create a business website?
- Can I build a website for free?
- Is it better to code your own website?
Building a website is a vital step for practically every business, regardless of size. But, the real question is how much does it cost to develop a small business website? How do you go about creating one?
This article will walk you through the important actions you’ll need to take to get started and help your small business website compete effectively in the online marketplace.
Building a Business Website: Overview
It is no longer possible to run a business, even a physical one, without a web presence. Consumers use the internet for anything from product research to finding a store’s location and working hours. Even a simple, well-designed website can give you an advantage in your area, and if you have things to sell, your website can open up new markets and easily develop your business.
Website design tools, on the other hand, have grown to be simple to use for everyone. You don’t need to know how to code when it comes to building an appealing and effective business website. Nevertheless, whatever tool you select, you only need to follow a few simple guidelines and tips to give your website a professional appearance, make it easy to locate, and present your organization in the best light.
Building a Business Website in 2022: 9 Simple Steps
Here’s our step-by-step guide to building a successful business website.
#1. Identify the Major Goal of Your Website
A business website is typically used to provide basic information about your organization or as a direct platform for e-commerce. Whether you construct a simple website that communicates a bit about your company or a more complex e-commerce site, the most important thing you must do is state what your firm does – in straightforward terms – on the homepage. Customers should not have to dig around to find out if your organization can meet their needs.
If you do not want to take payments (such as Apple Pay) through your website, you will have less work to do when setting it up. If you are a retailer or service provider and wish to provide clients the option to pay online, you will need to use an external payment service, which we will explain later in this article.
#2. Choose a Domain Name
One of the most crucial aspects of any website is its domain name. It’s the URL you’ll share with present and prospective clients, as well as promote on social media. As a result, it should be descriptive and simple to remember and fill in. To avoid customer misunderstanding, try to keep it short and eliminate abbreviations, acronyms, and numerals.
You must also choose your top-level domain or TLD. This is the ending of your domain name, such as.com,.net, or.biz. Nontraditional TLD names, on the other hand, have gained in popularity in recent years. These TLDs can be based on location, such as “.nyc”, or company kind, such as “.marketing,” “.agency,” or “.law.” While these can be useful, “.com” is still the most common.
Once you’ve decided on a domain name, you must check its availability and purchase it from a domain registrar. Here are several well-known domain registrars:
Check copyrights as you choose your new domain name to ensure you are not infringing on someone else’s protected name. If your intended URL is already in use, you can contact the company that is using it and ask to purchase it from them, or you can use a domain buying service from a firm like GoDaddy, which will contact the proprietors of your desired domain name. This service is approximately $70 per domain.
#3. Select a Web Host
Every website requires a host, which is a server where all of its data is stored for public access at all times. Because hosting your own website is likely too expensive for your small business, you’ll need to choose an external host.
You have two options depending on your financial standing.
The less expensive option, shared web hosting, entails sharing a server with other websites. Dedicated hosting is substantially more expensive, but it provides you with your own private server and eliminates the need to compete with other sites that could slow down your speed. Web hosting is included in certain web builder platforms’ monthly prices, such as Squarespace and Wix.
Here are some web hosting service options:
- 1&1 Ionos: This web hosting firm is well-known for its cloud hosting services, but it also provides other cloud-based services such as servers and site backup. Plans and capabilities vary, but the cost starts at $15 per month.
- A2 Hosting: This hosting provides both shared and dedicated hosting services. For the first year, new clients can get a Lite hosting plan, which is adequate for some small enterprises, for as little as $3.91 per month.
- DreamHost: DreamHost offers three managed WordPress hosting plans: DreamPress, DreamPress Plus, and DreamPress Pro. The average monthly cost is $16.95.
If you’re seeking free website hosting, keep in mind that hosting a website is far from free for the hosting business. As a result, companies may use alternative techniques to compensate for the free hosting, such as displaying banner adverts on your website.
As your business expands, you may discover that you need to switch to a different web host or perhaps collaborate with numerous providers to accommodate your website traffic and operations.
#4. Create Your Pages
A decent website is more than just a single page. You should design several pages dedicated to various parts of your business, such as a complete inventory of your products or services or a blog section for business updates. In terms of your general website, ensure that each page supports the major goal of the site, has a clear purpose, and includes a call to action (for example, “learn more,” “sign up,” “contact us,” or “buy this”).
A contact page is one of the most crucial elements of a website because it is your customers’ direct link to you, so provide as much information as possible (your business’s phone number, email address, and physical location, if you have one). An “about” page should also include information about the founding team or staff so that customers can place actual names and faces on your business.
If your company does not already have a logo, employ a graphic designer to create one for you to use on your website, business cards, and social media profiles. This will assist your clients in swiftly and simply identifying your organization on the web.
Justin Zalewski, director of product design at innovation consultancy Studio Science, shared a few basic guidelines for creating efficient, content-rich internet pages:
Make it clear what your company does:
Lead with a clear, short statement that summarizes what your company does. Within seconds of landing on your webpage, visitors should be able to comprehend what you do. A few well-written pages outperform many poorly written ones.
Avoid using stock photographs:
The simplest way to transform an excellent site into a mediocre one is to use tacky stock photography. If you need photos for your page, it’s ideal to utilize images of your actual team or office.
Improve speed by automating it:
Set up as many automated speed boosts as possible. Installing the correct plugins for your content management system (CMS) will cache elements of your site so users don’t have to download anything more than once. I propose WP Super Cache or W3 Total Cache for WordPress users since they compress files and allow visitors to navigate your site faster. If you’re not extremely tech knowledgeable, some of the more technical parts of caching and compressing data may necessitate the assistance of a web development partner.
Strategically place calls to action:
CTA buttons operate best when they correspond to the information on the page. A “purchase now” button, for example, makes sense on a product page, while a “contact us to learn more” button may be more relevant on the “about us” page. Similarly, a page presenting customer reviews may include a link to the available plans and pricing.
#5. Set up Your Payment System
While this step will not apply to all business websites, businesses that want to provide clients the opportunity to pay online must connect electronic payment systems with their websites. The most convenient method is to use e-commerce software or small business credit card processing solutions.
Many web hosting companies provide an in-house shopping cart or interface with e-commerce software.
Conduct some research to ensure that you acquire a solution that is simple to use and adaptable enough to satisfy your demands today and in the future.
#6. Put Your Website Through Its Paces and Publish It
Before declaring your site live on the internet, ensure that it works in all major browsers, including Internet Explorer, Microsoft Edge, Firefox, Safari, and Chrome. Check each page and feature in each browser to confirm that photos are displayed, links are correct, and the format is smooth. This may take some time, but the time you put in now will spare you from receiving future complaints from visitors who are unable to access particular features.
Also, ensure that your website looks good on mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets. This stage should not be missed because Google and other search engines have shifted to mobile-first indexing, which favors the performance of your website’s mobile version in search engine results.
Analytics software is another key component to include from the start. You can iron out any bugs and organize a suitable setup by doing this before the website goes live. Once the website is online, you may track page performance and use analytics to determine why a certain page is successful or unsuccessful.
You can check which of your marketing efforts are generating the most conversions, as well as any analytics such as city, browser, and so on, to gain insight into how your audience is interacting with your site.
If you install this [after] the site goes live, you’ll lose valuable data and won’t be able to know whether features of your site are successful or unsuccessful straight away.
#7. Use Social Media to Promote Your Website
Social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Pinterest are the most effective ways to expand your audience reach and inform clients about what’s going on with your business. When you update your website, share it on social media, but balance it with actual, non-promotional participation.
Include connections to your social media accounts on your website as well. The footer and auxiliary bar are the most typical areas to do this (the extra menu in the top right that often holds login or contact links). In our marketer’s guide, you can learn more about social media for business.
#8. Make an Investment in Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
Submitting your website to major search engines, as well as implementing a solid SEO strategy across your site, will help direct potential leads to your page. Defining title tags, meta descriptions, and Uniform Resource Identifiers (URIs) that are pertinent to your organization and industry might help you rank higher in search engines for the items or services you’re attempting to promote.
Including relevant keywords in your content from the start, as well as a strong focus on SEO from the start, will help you create traffic early on.
These crucial on-site SEO methods will help you increase your ability to rise in the ranks as you as you go about building your business website. (You can also explore off-site SEO strategies.)
Research the appropriate keywords
Choose keywords that are relevant to your company and that potential clients are looking for online. Visit our SEO small business tools guide to find a solution that can assist you in identifying, analyzing, and tracking these keywords.
Create new content
Regular blog posting, website additions, and content updates all indicate to search engines that your site is relevant for the targeted keywords. Choose themes that are both relevant to your business and exciting for your industry in order to establish yourself and your company as thought leaders in the field.
Include both internal and external links
Internal links are links on your website pages that go to other pages on your site, whereas external links are links to popular, authoritative websites. Place these links around your website in strategic locations. Make sure the connections make sense, suit the context, and add value to the reader’s experience; otherwise, linking may work against you.
Compress images so they don’t take too long to load on your site. Take the same approach with video, ensuring that any clips load quickly and do not slow down the overall performance of your site. The information of photos, such as tags and descriptions, is another opportunity to work on your keywords and notify search engines about the photographs.
Increase the speed of your website
Pages should load as soon as possible; ideally, within a few seconds. To determine whether your site is functioning optimally, utilize free site performance checkers such as Google’s PageSpeed Insights.
#9. Keep Your Website Updated
To keep people coming back to your website, update it frequently with blog posts about current industry events, new products and deals, and company news.
You should also check your software and all add-ons at least once a month to ensure they are up to date. Even if your website host’s security is good, your software is vulnerable to hacking if it is out of date. If you don’t have time to perform the duty yourself, delegate it to a reliable employee or a freelance website manager.
Starting a website for your company is a low-cost investment that can help you create trust and reach a larger consumer base than traditional marketing approaches might. You’ll never have to worry about “not existing” to your current and future clients if you maintain your website updated with new, current material and respond quickly to technological concerns.
How Much Does It Cost to Start Your Own Business Website?
A website for your small business might cost anywhere between $200 and $10,000 on average.
The entire cost of a website is determined by its size, complexity, and whether or not a professional web designer is hired. You can save hundreds, if not thousands, of money if you construct your own website.
The good news is that building a small company website no longer necessitates a degree in web design and development. There are various tools available that make it simple to design your own website while saving money.
Building a Business Website Free
If you’re wondering how to go about building a website for free, or if you’re experimenting with a new business idea and want to take it online for free, here are several terrific options for simple and free website builders. Building and publishing a business website can be simple and free using the following steps.
#1. Select a Content Management System (CMS)
A content management system makes it simple to produce and maintain the material on your website without the need for technical knowledge. Here are our best picks for free and simple website builders that feature CMS and will help you get your website up and running quickly.
Wix is a well-known no-code website builder. It is distinguished from competitors by its drag-and-drop functionality. This feature allows you to reposition a website’s ad components, such as images and text, based on how you want them to appear, making it easier to change web pages and providing a lot of control for users who wish to customize their site without scripting.
When you establish your website for free with Wix, your domain name will include Wix as a subdomain (e.g., www.yourbusinessname.wix.com). If you want a custom domain (for example, www.yourbusinessname.com), you must switch to a paid plan. While a custom domain appears more professional, Wix’s free option is an excellent place to start, and you can always upgrade later.
Weebly is a website builder that provides similar services to Wix, including a free version without a custom domain and the ability to upgrade to a custom domain with a premium plan. It employs a structured editor rather than a drag-and-drop tool, which means you organize your web pages by columns and rows. While this provides less freedom, a structured editor is frequently more than enough for a simple bespoke website.
WordPress is a free open-source platform, which means you may construct and publish a website for free, as well as use a plethora of plugins. Keep in mind, however, that you will need to either pay for web hosting or find a free web hosting company (which typically displays ads, is less secure, or offers poor performance).
When building a website, there are two primary components to consider: your domain (e.g., www.yourbusinessname.com) and your website builder, which allows you to create a website without any coding skills. Wix, Weebly, and WordPress are website-building platforms that provide free business services as well as a subdomain.
Furthermore, the free website builders provided by Wix and WordPress may be limited, whereas their subscription versions provide customers with no adverts, more storage, better bandwidth, and more services, all of which add to an overall improved experience.
However, if you want a bespoke domain, you must pay. This typically ranges from $12 to $60 per year.
#2. Create and Configure an Account
The next stages are simple once you’ve decided on a website builder. First, you’ll sign up with your email, Google account, or Facebook account. You may be asked to describe the type of website you intend to build, such as an e-commerce store or a personal blog.
Creating an Account on Wix
If you choose Wix, you will be asked a series of questions, including what type of website you are creating and whether you have previously created one. Then you’ll be able to pick between using Wix ADI (artificial design intelligence) or a template to develop your website.
Wix ADI is a faster and less personalized route. It will build a complete website for you with personalized photos and text you provide after you answer a few questions. The template path still provides a lot of framework for your website, but it also provides a lot of modification choices so you may build your website the way you want.
Creating a Weebly Account
When you sign up for an account, you’ll be asked if you want to build a website for commercial or personal use. You can only construct a free website on Weebly if it is for personal use. When you create a personal website, you will be prompted to choose a theme.
Weebly provides many themes based on the emphasis of your sites, such as business portfolio, personal, event, and blog. After you sign up, you will be directed to Weebly’s website editor. This is where you will create your website, from graphics to text. Some features will normally remain in place (for example, the headings or fonts) depending on the theme you choose, but all other aspects of the site will be modifiable.
Finally, when you’re satisfied with your website and want to publish it, click “publish” and enter your domain name. The free version will have Weebly in the URL (e.g., www.mybusinessname.weebly.com), however, Weebly will suggest paying options if your requested domain name is already used.
Creating a WordPress Account
WordPress will prompt you to create an account by providing your name, email address, and username. Then you’ll be asked to choose a domain name. Using the same example, when you search for “mybusinessname,” WordPress will provide potential options that you may buy.
The fully functional version will look like this: www.mybusinessname6838183.wordpress.com. Of course, this isn’t exactly attractive or easy to remember, which is important to remember and may make Weebly or Wix a more appealing option.
Building a Business Webiste FAQs
What is the best platform to create a business website?
Some of the best platforms for building a business website include;
- Zyro etc.
Can I build a website for free?
It is fairly usual these days to find free options when it comes to building a business website. Most website builders include a free or trial plan. You can create your own website for free, but it will lack the bells and whistles of a subscription service. Overall, Wix has the most extensive free plan of any website builder.
Is it better to code your own website?
Writing your own code allows you to advance as a developer. All of the problems you’ll confront and conquer while constructing a website that is primarily based on your own efforts will help you improve your coding skills. All of this adds up to more experience, which means you will become more efficient as a coder over time.
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