How to Create a Website
Audrey Jansen, Market Researcher
Wyoming Small Business Development Center Network
Websites are a vital piece of any marketing strategy, but most entrepreneurs struggle with how to get started creating their own. In order to guide you through the process, we’ve created a helpful website checklist:
- Do your homework. This is the step most people will skip, but it makes all the difference! Check out the websites of your competitors, begin gathering visual content for your own site and begin collecting written content.
- Select & purchase a domain name. Spend time brainstorming web address names (URLs) that are a good fit for your business — these URLs should be short, descriptive, and without characters — and then shop around with reputable domain providers.
- Choose between a platform and a web developer. This is one of the most significant decisions you will make in regards to your website. For platforms, I would recommend considering one of the following major players: Weebly, Wix, WordPress or Squarespace. If you decide to hire a developer (recommended), you should ask to see a portfolio and testimonials while also critically reviewing any required contracts.
- Google analytics/SEO plugins. Once you have a website, you’ll want to make sure you are using Google analytics (for traffic data) and a search engine optimization (SEO) plugin like Yoast.
- Get listed online. Now that you have a website to link to, it’s important that you make sure your business is listed with online search directories. Some of the big ones are: Google, Axciom and Bing. You can check your listings anytime at getlisted.org.
- Work, work and re-work your site. Your website is not a static marketing piece. It is something that should be updated frequently, especially in the first year that it’s live.
- Get a website analysis: One of the Wyoming Small Business Development Center (SBDC) Network’s no-cost services is an in-depth website analysis. I would be happy to go through your site and create a written report that outlines what you are doing well, what you are missing and what needs improvement.
It might be overwhelming at first, but a website can work wonders for your business when well-executed. If you have any questions while working through this checklist, please feel free to reach out to your local business advisor by visiting WyomingSBDC.org. You can also find more information about this topic and links to the resources I’ve mentioned in the blog section of our website.
The Wyoming SBDC Network is hosted by the University of Wyoming and sponsored by the Wyoming Business Council. Funded in part through a Cooperative Agreement with the U.S. Small Business Administration. All opinions, conclusions, and/or recommendations expressed herein are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the SBA.