A brief summary of issues to consider when building a new website. By Paul Morrison
Whatever the nature and age of a business, there is little doubting the fact that either the launch of a website or an overhaul of an existing online presence can have a dramatically positive effect.
However, with so much competition for custom going about the planning and launching of a website in the right way is crucial. With that in mind, there are several considerations which any business should make when planning their website design.
Although many businesses start off with a plan of their aims and objectives, few take the time to consider these at regular intervals. However, when launching any new marketing or advertising means or campaign, it is crucial to discuss and decide on goals.
Before any website can be designed, launched and successful, the owners must decide what they hope to achieve from the website. Not only will this give them a direction with their actual design but will affect the way that they manage the site once it is up and running.
The main aim of advertising is to reach customers and spread the word about the business in question. However, the reason that many businesses decide to launch a website is to reach an entirely demographic than the one they currently have. Although targeting a specific market at the expense of alienating another entirely is certainly not recommended, it is important for a website owner to establish who their target audience is and to tailor their website accordingly in terms of theme, content, tone and features.
The key detail for many businesses is their budget and the amount they will need to invest into the website and its ongoing operation. Not only will budget affect the actual web design but it may affect the features, the method of running and any additional upkeep which is required.
The key with many websites, just as is the case with businesses, is to have a name which is easy to remember and can quickly be brought to mind. Although search engines will play a large part in directing traffic to a website, any which is self explanatory and helps to promote the business it is acting for will be hugely beneficial. Once the web address has been chosen and utilised, the business owner will effectively be “stuck” with that, so its selection is extremely important.
Whilst the initial design of any website is vital and should not be forgotten or neglected, the actual day to day running of it is also important, and the amount of time and resources which a business has to invest in the running of their site must be a major consideration in the initial web design. For example, a website with a blog attached to it will only be effective as long as the blog is regularly updated. However, a business which has neither the time nor inclination for a regular blog should not have one included in their site.