Putting a website together does not have to be difficult these days with all the choices you have. However, the very first thing that you must do when you start is to organize a plan that can make the process easier and help you to stay on track.
1. Setting Goals For Your Site
Writing down very specific goals helps you to create a successful website as opposed to something that lacks purpose and measurable effectiveness.
-What do you want to accomplish with your site?
-What do you want visitors to do when they arrive on your site?
-Do you want your site to elicit an emotional response?
-What type of impression do you want to make at first glance?
Beyond the financial expectations that come with monetization, you have to narrow the characteristics, technical functions and purpose for the audience.
To get a good feel for the goals your site should set, visit a few random websites and note your initial reactions and then imagine these sites were yours. Would you be proud or embarrassed to put your name on them? Do they reach out to you in some way as an observer? In what ways could you do better and how will you do better?
2. Target A Specific Audience
In order to tailor a site for your chosen viewers, you have to know a little bit about them. Research the demographics behind your product or service and discover precisely who you should target. Find out if they prefer text or videos, Facebook or Twitter. Are they more likely to view your site on their phones or a personal computer? Customize everything about your site to your intended audience so that you are an instant hit with them. They will likely return
to your site again and share it with their like-minded friends.
3. Establish Your Call To Action
Your site should have a main purpose, such as getting visitors to buy something or to have them sign up for something. This is the all-important call to action or CTA. You need to define this even before creating the site. Plan your CTA ahead of time so that everything you do on the site aligns with that purpose. While you do not want to bombard people with instructions, you want your CTA to be clear and easy to accomplish. Without it, you will have no means of judging whether or not your site is meeting its goals.
4. Creating User-Friendly Navigation
Unless your site is designed for computer experts, such as programmers and technicians, make absolutely certain that it is easy to navigate and that each page easily leads to other pages with clear instructions on how to do so. If a visitor becomes confused, they are going to leave. Plan on having a navigation bar that functions flawlessly.
5. Planning Your Keywords
The importance of SEO (Search Engine Optimization) cannot be overstated. It is how you will meet up with your intended audience and how you will, ultimately, be successful. As you plan your site, jot down the main keywords you plan on using and then run them through a keyword research tool. You can find such a planner for free online, using it any time you need direction with content. This tool will tell you what specific words will help your site succeed, as well as to display other related keywords that will drive even more traffic to your site. Be highly intentional and accurate with your use of them.
6. Planning Your Content
Your content should focus on your keywords and your targeted audience, be appealing to look at and implore the reader to some action. Depending on the type of site you have that action may simply be to feel something, such as happiness, encouragement, sympathy or anger. If you are selling something, the content needs to focus on the features and benefits of that product or service, demonstrating how it will help people to solve a problem and ultimately, encouraging them to buy it.
7. Testing The Site
Prior to launch, your site must be thoroughly tested for errors and other anomalies of programming. Have a second and third set of eyes proofread and edit everything, even if the site has been professionally prepared. If your site will be accepting sensitive financial or personal data, run a security check by asking someone to hack or break the site. Validate your promise to protect the customer.
Whatever your new website is for, you want it to be a success. Most especially if it is for business, you need it to succeed. As with most things, a good plan will see you through. Use these suggestions and your good instincts to create a great looking, highly functional and successful site.
Jonathan Leger has been a successful Internet Marketer for over 11 years. He owns an SEO Tools suite at KeywordCanine.com.
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