Preparing to Create Your First Website
The mistake many people make when creating their first website is that they are over-enthusiastic at the start. Enthusiasm is great – it’s one of the main drivers of great content on the internet. But over-enthusiasm is where issues can arise, which can slow you down in the end. The solution is to plan, get certain things ready, and make some decisions before you start actually building. Preparing to create your first website is not difficult, providing you follow a few steps.
It’s pretty logical when you think of it. You wouldn’t, for example, start pouring tequila into a shaker to make a margarita without first checking that you have Cointreau and lemon juice. Preparing to create a website is similar to preparing a margarita. You don’t need to be wasting away in Margarataville to understand this analogy. Just simply read away:
Add 1.25 fl oz of Tequila (Domain, Hosting)
Without tequila you cannot even begin to make a margarita and the same applies to domain names and hosting. The domain name is the first thing that you should find and buy. Get one that’s easy to remember, doesn’t have many words, and is directly related to your business. The best approach is to get a name that is the same as your business name and always try to get a dot-com domain if you can.
You will also need website hosting which is basically the server that stores your website. There are several solutions available from iPage.
Add 0.75 fl oz of Cointreau (Architecture, Layout, Color)
Cointreau gives a margarita its body and its style: too much or too little can spoil the drink. Our next website preparation step is similar – the site architecture, layout and color of your website form the backbone of what will become the finished design.
The site architecture is a plan the looks at your users, maps out how they will find the pages on your website, and starts to layout those pages. All of this will start to inform the general layout of your website and you can start making decisions on things like colors and typography.
Add 1.25 fl oz of Fresh Lime Juice (The Content)
The lime juice in a margarita is the thing that gives it zip and keeps you coming back for more. The same applies to the content on your website. It includes images, text and other forms of media. Some of it you just need to think about in the initial stages but the more you get completed before you start the better. That said there are some items that you must have before you begin.
This includes your logo. Logos often look different on websites than they do offline so think about the colors, the size and the shape of your logo.
Images are another thing that you should work on as early as possible as they are crucial to most website design. Also start writing as much of the text as you can.
Add Crushed Ice, Shake and Pour (Marketing Plan)
You could make a margarita by pouring all the ingredients into a glass and stirring but it would not taste as good as making it properly. Making it properly involves getting crushed ice and a shaker and putting in some effort.
The same applies with a website. The methods you plan to use to market your website will have an influence on how you design it so it is a good idea to have a marketing plan drawn up before you begin designing. This includes at least some if not all of the following:
- Social media marketing plan
- SEO strategy
- Content marketing plan
- Online advertising plan
- Offline marketing strategy
Once you have all of these steps complete you will have a delicious margarita to enjoy. The effort involved in making a new website work is unfortunately not as enjoyable as a margarita. But if you follow the preparation steps, you’ll have a properly planned and constructed website. This may or may not give you more time to drink that margarita.