Every business needs to have an online presence in the digital age. Whether its for direct revenue generation or to entice customers to visit a physical location, follow these 5 tips to build an amazing website for your small business.
1. Choose the right domain name.
A domain is the website address (also known as a URL) a person types into a web browser to visit your site directly. Your small business website should have a domain that will be easy to remember and appropriate for your business. A website's domain also serves an important role in Search Engine Optimization (SEO).
Here are some tips to keep in mind when choosing a domain for your small business website:
- Keep it short and simple. Domains that are short and easy to spell are also easy for people to remember.
- Don't use any numbers or hyphens. Your website domain should be something a person can easily vocalize to another person. Adding in numbers or hyphens can make your domain awkward to communicate or harder to remember.
- Optimize your domain for SEO. Search engines are all about keywords and matching them up to a user's search query. Include keywords or geographic locations in your website address that are relevant to the customers you are trying to capture. For example, a domain like AtlantaPlumbers.com is pretty noticeable to someone with a burst pipe in Georgia's state capital.
- Use the correct Top Level Domain (TLD) for your business. Top Level Domains (or TLDs) are the extension after your domain with .com being the most widely used. Always try to use .com for your domain, but consider some others like .org or .edu if they are appropriate to your organization.
2. Create a plan to achieve specific business goals for your site.
We here at Bocohost often see businesses struggle with establishing or growing their online presence due to a lack of direction or planning. Many businesses could have avoided expensive mistakes by setting a clear objective or set of goals for their website. Here are some examples of goals you might set for your small business website:
- Capture sales leads. Visitors to your site are by expressing some interest in what you are selling. Designing your site around capturing their information or consent for future marketing can be a powerful part of your sales funnel.
- Provide important information to your customers. If your business is mostly or all brick-and-mortar (like a restaurant for example), then providing customers with clear information on how to locate or contact you could be the best goal for your site.
- Sell products online. We would be foolish to not include this goal. E-Commerce is a huge industry that continues to grow. Even if your main revenue sources are offline, you may find opportunities to drive a return from your online presence.
3. Create a maintenance plan for your website.
Many website platforms, like WordPress, are updated on a regular basis to fix bugs and patch security flaws. Plugins and extensions for your website are also constantly seeing new versions released, sometimes as often as bi-weekly.
If your website fails to keep up with these new versions, you open yourself up to a world of potential problems. Your website might fail to work properly, negatively impacting your website visitors and their impression of your business Worse yet, your website could be hacked and your own or your customer's data could be compromised.
Having a plan for content updates can be just as important for your small business website. Maintaining your website could also include updating important bits of information such as seasonal hours or sales promotions.
By establishing a maintenance plan with a regular schedule and clearly-defined operational procedures, you can avoid potentially serious issues with your website and help keep your site's content relevant to your business goals. Bocohost helps businesses maintain or manage their online presence with our Site Maintenance service.
4. Use search engine optimization to boost your website's visibility.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is all about making sure your website ranks highly for search terms that are relevant to your business. Search engines are constantly evolving their algorithms and implementing SEO best practices now will keep you from getting left behind.
Here are the top SEO practices to implement:
- Fast website loading speed. Check out our post on how to improve site speed.
- Easy to use and accessible site elements.
- Mobile-optimized site design.
- Optimized website code.
- Implementing keywords across your site's content.
5. Optimize your small business website for both desktop and mobile devices.
Building a website that is optimized for mobile devices is more important than ever. The majority of web traffic is now coming from mobile devices and your website needs to be easy to use on a smartphone or tablet. Search engines like Google have also begun to penalize websites that are not mobile-optimized with affected sites quickly becoming banished to the dark recesses of search results.
Check out this article for more information on why mobile is vital to your success online.
Creating a website for your small business is a must in the digital age. With the right planning, your small business can thrive online. At Bocohost, we help businesses get the most out of their online presence. Contact us today to learn more about working with us to grow your business online.