So, if you are saying you need a website, I am going to assume you are right. It might be for your business or for your cause. Or maybe its because you have a website, but it isn’t working for you; that is, not accomplishing the goal you have for it to increase your business.
So, you’ve gone out to Google (or Bing) and typed “I need a website” hoping to find someone to help you with this.
Before you decide on that someone, we’d like to give you a few questions that you should know the answer to before-hand, and that you can use as a test to see if the person/company you are talking to knows what they are doing.
So you should have answered (ahead of time) and they should ask you the following:
1 – Who are you designing the site for? It might be prospects, press, partners, your CEO, donors or any other audience. But you better have that clearly in your mind.
2 – What do you want the site to accomplish? There might be many goals, but what is the primary one? Is it: to get leads? To raise money? To educate? To entertain? To sell something?
3 – How are you different than everyone else out there saying/doing the same thing? Remember, the web is global, even though you may only be looking to have it be local for you. Even if you are the ONLY one in your area doing/selling what you do/sell, others that are similar from near and far also show up in a search. So local isn’t a difference that attracts attention – it only functions as a buying criteria.
4 – What are you going to offer of value to get someone to engage with you when they visit your site? Listing your phone number is not it.
5 – How often are you going to update your site’s content and who is going to do it? A blog, for example, is a great way to update your sites content daily or weekly (and the search engines love that), but who is going to write it?
6 – How are you going to get the visitor’s attention? You have about ½ of a second to get them to read a bit, and about 8 seconds if they stay to really engage them. What is going to do that?
7 – Do you own your domain name? If so, great. If not, buy it BEFORE you engage with someone. Don’t let some other organization do this for you unless they are doing it with your contact information and your credit card.
There are many more decisions to make (like how much you are willing to spend) before you get going on your site, but these 7 should get you started.