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Start a New Website Checklist

A Checklist for Creating a New Site for Your Business


It has become true that if you're in business you need a website. And yet many small businesses are reluctant to get online because of the time or expense they believe is required. This list of requirements will help you get the best website you can without spending a lot of money or time.

Web Hosting

Deciding where you're going to put your website doesn't have to be your first step, but it should be on the top of your list. This location is called Web hosting and there are lots of options to choose from. If you've decided to hire a Web designer to work on your site, he or she might have a preference as to what host you should use. Talk to them to see if they have suggestions.

Domain Name

A domain name is the address where your website will be found on the Web. The best domain name is one that uses the company's name in the URL. But sometimes that can be hard to get, if you haven't already registered it. If you can't get your company name, then consider something catchy or memorable that your customers can associate with you. Remember that it should be something that you like and can live with for a long time, as there's a possibility that people will start remembering your domain name before they remember your real company name.

Plan, Design, and Build the Website

Don't neglect the planning. Even if you're going to hire a professional Web designer to build your site, you should have an idea of what you want on it and how it should look. And don't be afraid to build it on your own. The key to doing it yourself is to start small. Build just a few pages at first, and then add to your site as you grow more comfortable building Web pages.

Marketing and Promotion

Once you've built your site and it's live, you want people to come visit it, but this can be the hardest part of the process. Marketing your site is almost more important than building it. You should plan on doing both passive marketing like search engine optimization and active marketing like buying ads for your site.

Metrics and Analytics

In order to know how well your site is doing you need to set up analytics to track the pageviews and visitors. Then, once you've started tracking them, you can see how they are changing over time, and track changes you make to your site or advertising campaigns you run to see how effective they are.

Maintain Your Site

The best sites on the Web change frequently and are kept up-to-date. If you're planning a website for your business you should factor in the cost of having at least one person who adds new content at least weekly and fixes problems as they are found.

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