Welcome back to Fast Lane Fridays. We hope you had a great week, that you plan to use the weekend for self-care, and that come Monday morning, you’ll be eager to get started on your next big project.
Today, let’s talk about your website. Today, you can create your own website with stock photos, standard themes, and a host of videos and massive online open courses (MOOCs) explaining how to get yourself set up online. If you’ve tried it yourself, you know how daunting it can be.
Six Questions to Consider for Your Website
- What platform and design will suit your business best?
- Is the domain name you want available?
- What hosting company will be the most secure and affordable for your budget?
- How many pages should it be? Will you have an elaborate website or is a 1 page website enough?
- If you’re selling a product, what’s the best ecommerce platform to use?
- What’s the best payment method for online sales?
These are just a few of the many questions you’ll have asked yourself. This is before you consider content – what’s your story? Who are you? What makes you different from your competition? – or whether you should keep a blog. A blog comes with its own list of questions, and we’ll come back to that in another post.
Whether you created your website in the early 90s, the mid-2000s, or just last year, ask yourself this. Does your website need to hit the refresh button?
A Tale of Two Websites
One of our more recent clients contacted us with a problem. People were buying his product sporadically, usually through his Facebook page, though he had a website. Or thought he did.
His initial website’s name had little, if anything, to do with what he sold. When you looked it up by typing it into the URL, it said the account had been suspended. Miscommunication with his original web design firm had led to his site becoming separated from his e-commerce site.
Though he still made sales, his efforts were scattershot, and it took a little time to explain SEO and that when you have an online business, it takes more work than just coming up with a name, hitting publish, and waiting for customers to come to his store.
We explained it this way.
Imagine your website is a brick-and-mortar store. If you have a physical location, you’re not going to just open the door and hope someone comes in. You’ll need to hang a sign, create a window display, advertise, and engage prospective customers to not only come into your store, but to come back or maybe tell a friend about your store.
- Hang a sign – website domain name
- Create a window display – Content. Images, logo, about us/services/what we do content, blog, etc.
- Advertise to and engage with your customers – hang your sign, write content and blogs, lead generation, all curated with SEO in mind.
- Get social
Once we knew what he wanted to sell, we could create a brand for his business. A new name, a new logo, a new motto and tagline, a fresh look.
To Every Time There is a Season
Yes, we can apply lyrics to just about anything. This lyric speaks to change. Change is good. Our world is constantly moving. Changing. Reinventing. Hello, seasons. It’s always-on, ever-in-demand, evolving, and that’s how your website should be viewed.
Your information is available 24/7, bringing your product or service to those who need it, and making you a thought leader in your industry.
So, this weekend, close your laptop, turn off your desktop, and put down your phone. Not forever, we know it’s impossible.
Take a walk outside and imagine your website as a physical location. How would you change it so people could find you, shop with you, use your services, and of course, tell their friends about you?
Do you feel refreshed? Changed? Ready to take on the world?
Then ask yourself this question, does your website need to hit the refresh button?
Bio: Lisa is a freelance writer, certified business book ghostwriter, author, and poet based in Ohio. She writes about freelance writing, travel, business, and finds her happy place in family biographies and historical fiction. Follow her on her blog Writing in the Fast Lane or check back here each Friday to see what she’s on about next.