Big changes have taken over the business industry in the past few years. One of the most significant changes would be the internet and the constant need for validation. The latter may sound like something you’d see in an article about what’s wrong with society nowadays—but hey, it’s true! Just ask any successful business or web design company in Sydney and they will tell you that your brand should be well-represented online to succeed.
It is no longer enough to run a brick-and-mortar business without the help of the internet. You need to get with the times and build a strong online presence. People are spending more time on the internet than ever before. They are also turning to the internet for everything, ranging from product research to branch location. Do you know what else your target market checks for online? They check product or service reviews, and they check your website.
Why Does Your Business Need a Website?
Even a simple but well-designed website can give you an advantage in your industry. Whether you are selling products or offering services, a website can help you open up new markets and grow your company easily. There is more than just one web design company in Sydney that you can choose from once you are ready to improve your web presence.
How to Get Started with a Web Design Company in Sydney?
Okay, so you have chosen a web design agency to work on your website. As a business owner, does your responsibility end there? No. There are some things you need to know and discuss with your web developers and designers before you can disappear into the unknown (and come back weeks later to get some updates). Here are some steps and details of web design and development that you may want to discuss with your web design agency:
1. Determine the main purpose of your website.
You may be having an existential crisis and if that’s the case, we’re here for you because you matter, buddy! But you can’t afford to have a crisis about your website’s purpose. There is a big difference between an informational website and an e-commerce website. You should communicate this detail with your developers and designers before anything else can start in the designing process.
Tip: No matter how excited you are to tell the world that you are the best company ever, do not make it difficult for your customers to find out what your company does. Say what your company does on your home page in simple terms. You can highlight some of your products and services, but do not cram everything on one page.
2. Think of a domain name.
Whichever web design company in Sydney you choose, you will need a name for your domain. If you are already an operational brand, then this should be easy as you already have a name. However, if you are just starting, then take your time to find a name that resonates with you and your brand. One of the most important features of your website is your domain name, since you will be sharing your URL with your current and potential clients through social media promotions, etc.
You want your domain name to be descriptive and easy to remember. It should be concise but avoid abbreviations, and it should leave a strong impact on your target audience.
3. Find a home for your website—choose a web host.
So, why do you need web hosting? You can think of your website as a collection of files. If you keep those files on your computer, only you would be able to see them. Therefore, you need a place where you can put the files so that your target audience can access your website. THAT is the reason why you need web hosting.
If you have hundreds of thousands of dollars lying around, then you can opt to host your website on your own. However, this is too big of an expense to shoulder for most people. The cheaper option is to choose an external host.
Tip: As much as possible, avoid shared hosting. Ask any web design company in Sydney and they will tell you the same. Learn more about why shared hosting is a bad idea.
4. Create more than one page.
There is more to your website than just your homepage. You want to create different pages for different aspects of your company. For example, you want a page dedicated to the catalogue of your products or services, or a blog page for your brand updates and industry news.
You should make sure that each page supports the main goal of your website.
- Strategically place ‘Call To Action’ (CTA) features on your pages: Check if your designer placed CTAs that match the information on the page. For instance, a “Read More” button makes sense on your About Page, but a “Buy Now” is more appropriate for a product page.
- Automate speed enhancements: It is a good idea to set up some automated speed improvements on your page. For example, if you use a content management system (CMS), you need to install plugins that will cache parts of your site. This eliminates the need for your visitors to download anything more than once.
- Avoid using stock photos: There is nothing inherently wrong with using stock photos, but it is much better for your website if you can use your own photos.
- Add high-quality images of your products: This will help your customers have a better idea about your products and their quality. This may improve your sales performance.
5. Set up your payment system.
Not all business websites need to set up a payment system. However, if you are planning to have an e-commerce website built, then you may want to offer the option to pay online. You should consider this when you are choosing your web hosting. If you plan on having a payment system integrated on your website, then you should inform your web company in Sydney so that they can offer some suggestions or make any necessary changes on their end.
6. Test your website before you publish.
Before you ask your web developers to publish your page, make sure that everything works on all major browsers. Run some tests to make sure that your website works on Internet Explorer, Microsoft Edge, Firefox, Safari and Chrome. Your web design agency would have run a quality check as well, but there is nothing wrong with seeing your website in action for yourself. Click through each page and their features. Make sure that everything is loading and working.
This stage of the process may take a while but it’s worth it. Imagine all the stress and hassle that you will avoid handling complaints from visitors who can’t access certain features.
Tip: It is advisable to incorporate an analytics program into your website from the very beginning. By setting up an analytics program, you can spot any issues and coordinate with your team for any revisions. On top of that, you can monitor the performance of each page once your website goes live.
7. Make sure to market your website on social media platforms and search engines.
Social media platforms are a great way to reach out to people. You can increase your audience reach and provide quick updates to your existing clients. Whenever you post about your website on your social media accounts, make sure to balance your promotions with genuine, non-promotional engagement.
Inversely, you can add your social media links to your website to let people know where else you are active. The most common place to put your social media icons is on the footer or the ancillary bar.
You can submit your website to major search engines to help you in directing potential clients to your page. You can do this by using strong Search Engine Optimization (SEO) strategies across your site. This involves adding title tags, meta-descriptions and uniform resource identifiers (URIs) that are appropriate to your company. Making sure that your website and content are relevant to your industry will help ensure that you rank in search engines for the products or services that you are offering to your target audience.
8. Maintain your website.
Keeping your website fresh is important. You need to show both your audience and search engines that your brand is relevant. You can do this by updating your website often with blog posts on current industry happenings, new products and offers, and company news. This will keep your audience coming back to the site.
Aside from your content, you should also check if all your software, add-ons and plugins are all up-to-date. This check should be done at least once a month. If your software is not updated, then you are putting it at risk of being hacked. No matter how strong the security of your web hosting is, your website will be prone to issues if your software is not up-to-date. As a business owner, you may not have the time or the experience to do this yourself, so you can delegate the task to a trusted employee or outsource a web development and web design company in Sydney.
A business website is a low-cost investment that will help you to establish credibility and reach a wider audience base. Gaining customers through an effective website can get you further than just solely relying on traditional marketing techniques. If you keep your website relevant and credible then you are already ahead of any competition who does not have a website yet. Get in touch with a web design company in Sydney now and to get your online journey to success started!