So you've decided to create a website, and you've thought about what you'd like to put on it. Fantastic! Now, it's time to start the design process.
Who Should I Ask To Create My Website?
Ok - so you've answered the question "Do I Really Need a Website?". Congratulations! You are now ready to take the next step!
Some people would think the next step would be to start looking for a website designer, and we'll get to that shortly. However, it's a good idea to do a a little pre-planning before starting the search for your perfect design partner. This will help you in your initial discussions with a designer, thus making your conversation very productive.
At the minimum, your website should have the following pages:
The home page is the place where most of your potential customers will land.
Your homepage should clearly show the name of your business/organization and provide the following:
This page should display general information about the owners/founders of the organization. The about page should discuss how and when the business was created and a little bit about it's history. It should also have pictures of staff/board members and links to bios.
This is a great place to put your Mission Statement or Curriculum Vitae.
These pages should be displayed so that each page represents a single service or category of products/services. Google likes pages "chunked" up in in relevant portions. Don't try to list and describe all of your products and services on one page. List them logically with relevant links between pages. It's good to use Next and Previous links if a customer should go in order from one page to another.
This is where you'll display (in a clear and concise way) how a potential customer would contact you. You'll want to list both your physical and mailing addresses, with an interactive map if appropriate. You will want to make sure that the phone numbers and email addresses are hyperlinked, so that people can simply click on them to call or email you directly.
Important! If you work from home, I highly recommend that you DO NOT display your home address. I would suggest getting a PO Box or purchasing a mailbox from a UPS store location, and using that address instead. You can't be too careful in this public arena!
Trust me, your website will grow from here. But this is a good starting point in planning your site.
Have questions? Feel free to contact me and I'll be happy to discuss your website needs.
"Do I really need a website?"
This is an important question to ask yourself if you are starting out with a small business or non-profit. And I would venture to say the answer is almost always a resounding "Yes!"
Having a web presence gives your business or organization legitimacy.
Nowadays, if you can't be found on the web, people get suspicious of your legitimacy. Just having a simple website that displays even the barest information about you goes a long way. It shows that you are professional and established, and that you care about conveying accurate information about your business.
Your website is your online business card.
When you meet someone in a professional arena, it's customary to give and receive business cards. If someone simply scribbled their phone number on the back of a napkin, you might think they were a bit less than professional. However, if they presented you with even a simple business card, with clear contact information, you would know that they cared about their business and the impression they make.
Your website allows you to (at least partially) control what information is listed about your business.
Having complete, clear and up-to-date information posted online is essential for any business or non-profit. Trust me, if you have been established for any length of time, you will probably find information about your business on the web that may or may not be correct. It's important to get ahead of the curve! Creating even a simple website can help ensure that the information publicized is as correct as possible.
We at MTC Web are committed to helping everyone establish a web presence, no matter how small an organization. Contact us for a free consultation to discuss how we can help you create and maintain a professional image on the web.
Hi! I'm Michele and I am the owner and designer for MTC Web.