By: Annelie Fouché
One of the areas within the scope of what we do as e-Marketing consultants and content marketers includes creating digital platforms that can be classified as living extensions and representations of the clients and brands we work with: aka websites.
We live in an age where anybody, given enough time (to watch endless online tutorials), resolve and tenure (think late nights and copious amounts of coffee) can indeed create and launch their own websites, but at what cost?
Many of our clients have had to learn the hard way: Free isn’t always the best option.
So, we urge you: Have a look at the following (by no means exhaustive) list of essential elements before embarking on the journey of creating what is supposed to be a professional reflection of your brand and/or product offering.
Congratulations! You’ve launched your business and you feel you are ready to get started on your website. We could not be more excited for you.
Let us however just start with this tiny disclaimer: getting a website off the ground requires passion, energy and a certain measure of resolve. You will need a relentless will to stay buoyant throughout the process, because some days you will struggle to feel a breeze of excitement, while others may leave you feeling like a leaf squashed against a window by gale force winds. However, once you see the end-result, your website may just become the wind beneath your proverbial bottom-line wings.
Choosing service providers: This may come as a shock, but not all web developers are created equal. Some can custom code and design websites, whilst others only work with website templates (such as WordPress), and only but a handful also have the ability to create a website that actually communicates with your clients through adequately written content (copy) and can apply search engine optimisation (SEO) principles so your website can be found on Google..
We are not saying such allrounders do not exist, but just be wary of ‘’too good to be true website offerings’’ that promise all-inclusive packages at very low rates. They may be good coders and designers, but make sure they also have a dedicated copywriter (who understands SEO and the principles for online copywriting), and editor for creating your content.
The content for your website is a huge component and can be a very daunting task. Contrary to popular conceptions, content does not only consist of copy (and copy is certainly not merely a case of duplicating what you have used for your brochure onto your website).
Most web designers will require your corporate branding and homepage copy (which includes the aforementioned menu structure) to commence with a prototype of your landing page design. This design is used as the benchmark to establish the preferred look and feel for your website. It is also the first impression you will leave with any visitor. If it doesn’t sell you in 30 seconds, you are already off to a bad start. Depending on the service provider, they may present one or two possible variations for approval.
Once this is finalised, they can commence with the design and development of the rest of the website (based on the content) and adding special features and functionality.
Once the above process of planning for and launching your website is finalised - which can take anything between 6 to 8 weeks (or longer, depending on the scope and size of your website) – the REAL work starts, and answering the following questions are important:
At EB Consulting, we have keen insight into the holistic process of developing and launching websites. We take a partnership approach in guiding our clients through every required step and essential elements for launching a website that works.
Get in touch with us today to learn more: http://ebconsulting.co.za/contact-us