Taking an existing business online can feel easier said than done. In this guide, we’ll explain how to create a website for your business, breaking the process down into straightforward steps for you to follow.
- Decide what you need your business website for
- Research ways of building your business website
- Set a budget for creating your business website
- Create a layout for your business website
- Create your business website’s content
- Publish and test your business website
- Market your website
1. Decide what you need your business website for
Should people be able to buy a product from your business website? Should they be able to book an appointment? Or will your website just be a place where people can learn more about your business and what you do?
If you settle on a purpose for your website before you create it, you’re far more likely to end up with a website that actually does what you want it to.
It’s a good idea to decide on a main purpose for your website, along with a list of features you’d like it to have.
If you’re not sure what features your site should have, research the websites of other businesses in the same sector as yours and use them to help inform your decision making.
2. Set a budget for your business website
How much are you willing to spend to get a business website? It’s a tough question to answer, especially if you’re not sure of the costs involved.
The price of a website can range from just a few pounds a month for a simple website you build yourself, to thousands of pounds in upfront costs for a complex website created by a web designer.
If you’re looking to get a small business online, the amount you need to spend will be much nearer the bottom end of that range than the top end.
But it pays to understand how much a website costs and set a personal budget, so you don’t end up paying more than you need to for a website that does what you want. Don’t forget, your budget should include the cost of getting someone to create content (words and images) for your website unless you plan to create it all yourself.
3. Research ways of building your business website
There are a few options available to build your business website and it’s important you pick one that meets your needs.
If you lack technical skills, you’ll probably want to opt for a website builder tool like the one offered by GoDaddy, a WordPress site with a built-in site builder feature (GoDaddy’s WordPress hosting offers a site builder), or hire a professional.
The advantages of a DIY option like a website builder are the ability to make changes to your site whenever you need to, and the low price compared to hiring a web designer.
If you decide to use a web designer, you’ll likely end up paying more for the finished product, but you’ll also be able to have them create a large, bespoke website with complex features.
Whether you opt for a DIY option or a web designer depends on how much you’re willing to spend and what you need your website to do.
If you have a list of features that you need your site to have, you can use it to help decide which is the right option for you.
Once you’ve found an option and provider that you like, you can start planning your website.
4. Create a layout for your business website
You should already have a list of features your website needs, but where will those features appear on your site? And how will visitors to your site find their way around it?
Sketching out a basic layout for your website will help you answer these questions and make the process of building your site easier.
If you’re not sure what your website layout should look like and what pages it should have, revisit websites in your niche and see how they’ve approached the issue.
You’ll almost certain want your site to have:
- A homepage – a general page providing visitors with general information about your business and what it does.
- An about us page – a page giving more details about your business, its history and the people behind it.
- A contact us page – a way for visitors to get in touch.
If you’re planning to sell products online, you’ll also need product pages.
You’ll also need to plan how visitors will navigate between the pages of your website.
You can learn more about planning the design of your website in this guide.
5. Create your business website’s content
Once you’ve planned your website, you can start the process of creating content for it.
You’ll need written content and relevant images for each website page you’ve planned, as well as other content you want to include on your site such as logos and menu text.
Remember, you can always hire someone to write your website content for you if there’s a lot of it or you don’t feel comfortable writing it yourself.
You may also want to hire a professional photographer to provide high-quality images for your website. For example, a selection of good product photos can help convince website visitors to make a purchase.
6. Publish and test your business website
Once you’ve got all your content ready, you can publish your business website and make sure that everything works in the way you expect.
If you’re using a DIY website builder, you’ll have to upload and everything yourself. But if you use GoDaddy’s Website Builder and aren’t sure how to use a certain feature or have any other question, you can contact the GoDaddy Guides on 020 7084 1810.
If you used a web designer, make sure they have everything they need to get your site up and running.
7. Market your business website
Once your website is launched, you need to make sure people know about it. You can do this by using techniques such as:
- Search engine optimization
- Social media marketing
- Email marketing
- Including your website details on physical branded items such as business cards
This guide explains more about how to get a new website noticed.