Saturday, September 13, 2014
With so many roll outs being made in technology, ranging from new wearable techs to smartphones, a website is a big deal in our modern society. In fact, if you’re an entrepreneur soliciting business through personal selling, your potential customers will likely ask, “May I have your business website address, please?” With an embarrassed look to the countenance, some quietly say, “I don’t have one”. How embarrassing! If you’ve been in this situation, you’re actually not the only one who has threaded that dreaded path. Now that you know better, what next? To elude uncomfortable moments such as the scenario presented above, it’s important that you get a website established as soon as possible (Quick, hurry! What are you waiting for?)
Prior to launching a website, there are some things that you must do. Follow along as I indulge you with 4 things to do before launching a website.
1. Determine your goals
A loose website is no website at all. The launching of your website is similar to hosting an event. As the website’s administrator, you’d have to think about the launch date and a specific time to go live. This is a memorable time and you should endeavor to make it so. Before your website’s inauguration, it’s important to determine your goals and objectives. This is what you’d want your website to accomplish. The first question to consider is, “Why launch a website? Or for what purpose do I want to launch a website?” Is it that you want to offer a product to the public? Do you have a service(s) you want people to know about and contract? Are you launching a website as a portal, a place where people can obtain meaningful information on a particular subject? Whatever your reasons are, defining your goals and objectives will put you in a better position to determine the success of your website’s launch.
2. Move ahead by implementing
Having a goal(s) is wonderful. However, developing strategies to accomplish those goals will ultimately determine how successful your business is. At this stage, you should be thinking about ways in which you’ll get your website out in the open. After all, a website does not promote on its own, or it doesn’t have a bullhorn to announce its presence. You’re the one who’ll have to take actions to ensure that your website gets the exposure it needs by implementing strategies to move ahead. When implementing strategies, think about questions such as:
• Where will your traffic come from when you’ve finally launched?
• What is needed for you to source traffic from that location?
• Who do you want to interact with your site when you’ve launched it?
• What’s the nature of your products and services, if any?
• What techniques will you use to drive traffic to your site?
• Will you have a content strategy?
• How will you maintain your audience when developed?
Before proceeding, Id’ just like to point out the question highlighted within the fifth bullet since that’s important.
The question posed was: What techniques will you use to drive traffic to your site? This aspect includes the things you’d do to get people to visit your site. Techniques vary, depending on your preference and the practices that you’re familiar with. If you’re a novice to Internet Marketing and how things work in this industry, it’s ideal that you contract the services of a company that’s able to assist you with marketing online. These individuals would likely incorporate techniques to drive traffic such as:
Social Media Marketing: This form of marketing includes using Social media or networking platforms to get your website out in the open so that Internet users can flock to it. For this aspect of marketing, you’ll need a Facebook business page, a twitter account, a Google+ account, LinkedIn and others that are commonly used.
PPC Campaigns: PPC (Pay-per-click) are campaigns that are used for the purpose of advertising where text ads are placed on a search engine such as Google. These are displayed on a search results page when a specific keyword or keyword phrase is searched.
Search Engine Optimization: Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is a technique that includes several other techniques to boost a website’s visibility in a search engine’s result page.
It’s important that these marketing methods be considered before your website is launched in order to draw less confusion.
3. Develop a content strategy
Don’t be a bum in thinking that content will come seamlessly after launching your website. That does not happen on its own. Someone has to put pen to paper or at least their hands to the keyboard to write a good article. Many websites, soon after launching has failed, simply because there’s no maintenance where content is concerned. A content strategy includes determining:
• How content will be uploaded when available
• When content is made available. Will content be composed daily, weekly, monthly?
• How many times per day will you make a post? Would that be twice, once or three times per day?
• Who are the contributors? Will every post be ghost written or by the administrator? Will you have a contributors category in place where others can contribute content and receive due credit?
• Will you synchronize each website post with your social platforms so that you don’t have to manually distribute content on the various social media platforms?
While the aforementioned are important, it’s also wise to think about the content structure of your website before launching. This includes the different content pages that will be available onsite. Will you have an ‘About’ page? What about a “Contact Us” page? (How will people reach you in situations where they need to enquire about your services?) What content will be available on your landing page? According to Chris Brogan, marketing consultant, “No matter what, the very first piece of social media real estate I’d start with is a blog.” This speaks to the fact that content is important to the success of your website launch.
4. Take an unbiased look at your website
When you’ve finally have the above mentioned things in place, the next step is to assess the website itself. What would people think about it? Is it user friendly and interactive? Are there any broken links? Will users be able to navigate properly onsite? How quickly will they be able to find what they want? Those questions are all important since they affect whether or not you create a good impression after your website is launched. With some onsite SEO techniques, you should be able to get your site cleaned up in no time. Ensure to have a sitemap up so that both users and search engine can find your website after it has been launched.
Since launching a website includes dedicating a lot of time, effort and resources, it’s important that you get someone or an organization that’s well positioned in their field of practice to assist, both with the pre-launched and launching activities.