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Do you get the most out of your online presence, or is it falling short of the business ideals and goals that you’d like to pursue? Like many firms, you devised your digital brand management plans with the noblest of intentions, but now, you need actionable strategies.

Whether you’re attempting to leverage the traffic that your small business website receives or integrating your e-commerce solutions with the social media platforms that drive inbound visits, you can’t succeed without a solid strategy. Luckily, this crash course can help you redefine the way you construct your brand’s footprint.

Creating your startup website may be easier once you find your bearings. Although you don’t have to go out and get an IT degree, you should know the essentials.

How Websites Work


Websites are just collections of documents. Although they’re written in special coding languages that web browsers can consume and display, like HTML, CSS and JavaScript, they’re the same as any other computer file in most regards.

When you open a website, your computer or mobile device is communicating with a special computer called a server, which “serves” the files that describe how to display and run the web content. Websites and servers have human-readable addresses, or domain names. For instance, you probably typed a domain, such as “textbroker.com” or “google.com,” to reach this page.

Creating Your Own Business Website


To build a website, you need to create the files that your server sends to readers when they navigate to your site’s address. At first glance, this seems fairly straightforward, but there are many different options to choose from, including
 
  • Coding your own site from the ground up or by building on free libraries,
  • Hiring a web designer or branding agency, and
  • Working with a site design tool that generates code automatically according to the visual templates that you lay out.

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Get Familiar with Content Management

Before diving headlong into any of these methods, it’s important to remember that creating the site’s files and pages is only the first step. If you want your web presence to adapt to your new business initiatives and marketing projects, then you’ll need to create a content management system, or CMS, that lets you upload items like blogs, change site design templates to stay in line with your branding and make edits while you’re on the go.


Don’t work with an outreach agency or design tool before making sure that it can
 
  • Accommodate the kinds of update processes that you find most convenient,
  • Function seamlessly with your chosen social media integrations and platforms,
  • Operate consistently across different types of devices, such as tablets or laptops with different screen sizes, and
  • Implement behind-the-scenes data analysis tools that keep you informed about how users interact with your web presence.

Getting Your Site Online


Setting up servers and domains are complicated processes, especially if you want people to access your site safely without risking their personal information. Fortunately, there are plenty of web hosting companies that provide everything from domain names to the secure servers that they point to. You can even purchase domains separately to keep your branding consistent if you change web hosts down the line.

Building and deploying a small business website isn’t as hard as it may seem. It’s even easier when you have the right written content to flesh out your ideas and establish a cohesive sense of branding.

 
Need help creating unique, high-quality content to boost your web presence?

Join over 53,000 customers worldwide and use Textbroker to help you find the perfect content for your website.

 

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Making a Good Impression: Essential Design Suggestions


Suppose that you ran a classic, brick-and-mortar retail shop. Would you spend time keeping the premises clean, orderly and staffed by friendly people? After all, some studies suggest that at least two-thirds of shoppers have steered clear of stores because of the way they looked from the outside, and researchers believe that product appearance plays a critical role in driving consumer confidence. In light of such trends, why would you leave your small business website design up to chance?

Sure, websites are markedly different from corner shops or consumer products, but their design features are no less vital to their ability to sustain traffic and promote transactions. You’re entitled to decide which creative concepts and stylistic directions suit your business model best. At the same time, there are some good design practices that every marketing leader, blogger, entrepreneur and advertising agency head must understand.

Critical Web Design Considerations


What makes great website designs worth browsing? It’s tempting to go for whatever looks the most eye-catching, but such strategies only get you so far. For instance, if you try to make things “pop,” then you’ll eventually find yourself in a visual arms race that produces a confusing, jumbled web presence. Instead, focus your design objectives on these three key concepts:
 
  • Legibility – Can users consume your site easily at different zoom levels or on devices with different screen sizes?
  • Visual consistency – If someone travels from your homepage to your “contact us” page, do your headers, logos and other branding elements keep up, or does it look like a totally different browsing experience?
  • Funnel functionality – Do your design elements guide users toward specific actions or paths, such as making purchases, subscribing to email lists or reaching out for assistance? If such paths exist, do they conflict with the natural order that people follow when browsing the site?

As any good designer will tell you, these are just some of the ideas that you should keep in mind while you’re creating and refining your site. Most business decision-makers don’t specialize in fields like graphic design, however, so addressing these topics is a convenient start.

In an internet world filled with competing content, simplicity is key. For instance, you might want to replicate branding elements from your site on other platforms, such as in a blog, social media profile or mixed-media ad campaign, and simple visual content traverses the boundaries of the web quite well. Or, you might have to include elements like Facebook or Twitter buttons into your layout, so keeping things uncluttered from the start may be best. No matter how complex your web designs get, simplistic layout philosophies make it a lot easier to achieve a consistent brand that carries a strong theme.

Delving Into the Specifics


Websites can include hundreds of distinct visual elements. From HTML headers and links to paragraphs of text and illustrative images, there’s quite a bit going on at any given moment. Although the three ideas mentioned above should keep you on track, it’s also helpful to learn about some of the common elements encountered on modern websites.

 

1

Landing Pages

 
As we’ve covered before, landing pages are the places where new visitors typically “land” on your site. Using different landing pages to target unique keywords and search terms lets you provide individualized entry points for visitors seeking distinct information, such as your e-commerce listings or business contact details.
 

2

Banner Images

 
These large images are often located at the top of webpages. Along with taglines or brief headers, they serve as effective visual attention-grabbers that set the tone for the rest of the page’s theme.
 

3

Endless-scroll Layouts

 
Once, these designs were restricted largely to news sites that provided never-ending articles no matter how far down the page you traveled. Now, endless-scroll and similar long-format layouts are increasingly popular on business sites, such as blogs and service pages.
 

4

Written Content

 
Written content is such a ubiquitous element of websites that many people take it for granted. In reality, however, it’s the most important component of your site when it comes to attracting visitors. Search engines like Bing and Google use your site’s textual content to determine what it’s about so that they can provide users with accurate results when they look for you.

The quality of your written content ultimately decides whether people stick around or bounce to other sites after their initial visit. It also determines what kinds of impressions your enterprise makes on people by setting the mood for rewarding user experiences, lucrative transactions and engaging conversations. Although it may not be as flashy as visual elements, text is the vital substance that gives your website its essential meaning.

 
Need help creating unique, high-quality content to boost your web presence?

Join over 53,000 customers worldwide and use Textbroker to help you find the perfect content for your website.

 

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Refining Your Tactics: Achieving Mastery of Digital Content


You set up a domain, found a site host and created a website, but you still have work ahead of you. Maintaining the web presence that you’ve built is one of the most important parts of performing digital outreach that propels your company forward.

Where should you start? It’s all about text content, and we’re not just saying that because we’re so passionate about the written word. From helping you surmount the search engine rankings that people rely on to find you to publicizing your new endeavors, written content empowers you to accomplish concrete goals with your web presence. Not all content is the same, however, so it’s important to manage yours wisely.

Create Content for Your Audience


Many different classes of web content are designed to attract viewer attention, such as
 
  • Category, product or service descriptions on shopping pages,
  • Blogs that explain topics in more detail than what fits on a landing page,
  • Informative wiki articles,
  • Press releases that share timely information, and
  • Homepages, introductions and mission statements that give people the gist of what your business is all about.

These kinds of content can be further broken down into things like the written word, embedded videos and explanatory images. Although this might seem like a lot of options to choose from, the golden rule to remember is that you should start by deciding what you want different parts of your site to do.

An auto repair shop that decides to create a website would probably benefit from including a homepage that lists the different kinds of services that the business performs. But, would it be a good idea to describe said services in excruciating detail on the homepage? People don’t like having to read long blocks of text, especially when they’re only looking for specific information. The in-depth explanations should have their own separate pages that readers can reach with ease.

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Employ Smart Content Creation and Layout Planning

Using keywords, or the phrases that people enter to search for online content, does more than make it easier for users to find your web presence. Good keyword placement can also provide natural locations for links to other content on your site and give people more reason to keep exploring your pages.

Pro Tip: Working with writers who have experience creating small business website content can make it far easier to include links and other supporting elements in your texts seamlessly.

Make the Most of Organic Search Results


Organic search results are those that actually match up with what people were looking for instead of trying to gain an advantage by tricking the system. For instance, if you hijack your close competitor’s web traffic by mentioning their brand name in your site over and over again, this isn’t organic because it misleads users. When Google discovers what you’ve done, it may even self-adjust to reduce your ranking.

If your website’s main purpose is to sell parts that people can use to repair or build their own computers, then you might want to expand your content by creating blogs that describe how to complete DIY repairs with your products. A company that provides business clients with regulatory training might decide to promote the types of certifications it has or describe the penalties that companies could face for falling behind on compliance.

How a Tool Can Help You Rank Organically


Another way to appear in search results organically is to first compare the keywords your competition is using to those you are planning to use. You can first try typing the keywords into a search engine, and if the results are your direct competitors, you may want to use those keywords as well. The easiest way to determine if a keyword is the right fit for your business is to use a program that allows you to analyze your competitors’ keywords.

Check this out for an easy way to research your competitors

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Develop a Keyword Strategy

Don’t just create a few lone pages that target a couple of keyword phrases here and there. Instead, build a comprehensive startup website ecosystem that addresses as many relevant topics as possible in an organized fashion.

Search engines profit when they help humans find things. Catering to people’s browsing habits and desire for further knowledge is the best way to keep up with changing standards and algorithms.

Managing Your Content Intelligently


Whenever you create content, you should analyze how well it works so that you can profit from your investment of time, creative effort and money. Using performance-tracking analytics tools from companies like Google is only part of the equation. You’ll also benefit from fostering strong relationships with content creators who can help you evolve as you learn new lessons.

 
Need help creating unique, high-quality content to boost your web presence?

Join over 53,000 customers worldwide and use Textbroker to help you find the perfect content for your website.

 

Free Client Registration!

 


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