As always, a little preparation can make all the difference. Just as you should always have a business plan when launching a business, you should also have a plan when launching your website.
Not sure where to start? Here’s a handy downloadable checklist of important things to consider when you’re ready to take the plunge.
Smarter Business Action Plan
Create your website
The process of planning, building and launching your first business website doesn’t have to be a complex, stressful and costly affair. Start small and simple with our ten-step action plan.
1. Research your competition
Make a list of your competitors and assess their websites as your customers might. What did you like about it? What didn’t you like? What did you find confusing? Was it easy to find what you were looking for or make a purchase? Use your research to identify ways your website could help you to stand out from your competitors or offer a better experience.
2. Choose the perfect domain name
When it comes to choosing a website address, the name of your business is an obvious starting point. However, you might want to go further to include descriptive keywords, such as the type of business and where you’re located. These can make it easier for customers to find you via search engines.
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3. Plan the site map
A simple but effective business website needs at least three pages – a homepage which tells people who you are and what you do, a goods/services page which shows people what you’ve got to offer, and a contact page which tells them how to reach you.
4. Select a web design template
Rather than starting from scratch, take a look at the wide range of templates offered by Telstra Business Digital Marketing Services. Telstra will help get you up and running quickly, without the need for developers and coding.
5. Gather your images
Take stock of the images at your disposal and ensure you have the rights to use them. There are many online image libraries, such as iStock and 123RF, that shouldn’t blow your budget. For your own product photos, amateur photography could leave a poor impression, so consider hiring a photographer.
6. Write the copy
Keeping it snappy, while including any relevant keywords and search terms to assist with search engine optimisation, will help your website to rank higher in search results. Put your best foot forward with examples of your work and customer testimonials, as well as any information about terms, returns and other clarifications customers may want to know.
7. Add contact details
If you want people to visit your physical store, include a map with public transport and parking options. If you want them to shop online or subscribe, keep your sign-up or enquiries process as quick and painless as possible.
Whether you’re using Telstra Business Digital Marketing Services or your own choice of developer, you shouldn’t need to see a single line of code when putting your site together.
Once everything is checked and you’re happy, it’s time to hit publish. Advertise your website details through all your marketing channels to let the world know you’re online.
10. Optimise and update
You need to keep your business website fresh. It’s important that you can update it at any time, which is why Telstra Business Digital Marketing Services includes a website editor tool so you can make your own updates.
Originally published September 26th 2017. Updated December 4th 2019.