How to build a website that will have a big impact for your small business sales

- November 3, 2021 3 MIN READ

With internet penetration and eCommerce sales reaching record highs, a website and broader online presence have evolved from ‘nice to have’ to ‘must have’ for small businesses. Today, many consumers research, discover and engage businesses online, so an eye-catching, professional and effective website can help you stand out to potential customers, writes Tamara Oppen, Managing Director GoDaddy Australia.

Whether you’re starting an online business from scratch or building a website for your existing brick-and-mortar store, getting online is easier and more affordable than ever.

Do these four things if you want to build and promote your online business

Purpose, plan and priorities

The most effective online presence for a small business is if it has a clear purpose. Do you want customers to book an appointment, place an order, sign up for your newsletter or something else entirely? Many of the decisions you make, from the layout to the call to action, will be guided by this overarching purpose. If your purpose is simply to sell artwork, an image gallery, eCommerce page and payments platform might be your priority. Or if you want people to book a consultation for your wedding planning services, glowing testimonials and a ‘contact me’ page will be important.

Choose and register your domain name

Now it’s time to create your online presence, starting with your website. First, choose and register your domain name – the online address for your website. The most effective domain names are representative, memorable and simple. Securing multiple domains can help you protect your brand and steer more people to your website. You may want to consider registering related domain name extensions like .com, and even .Sydney or .Melbourne if that’s where you’re located.

Even if you’re not ready to build your website immediately, registering your domain name secures your business’ online identity and prevents someone else getting it first. While you are planning your website, you can publish a ‘coming soon’ landing page to generate early excitement. When you’ve secured your domain, create a matching email address to build consistency and brand awareness.

Design and build your website or eCommerce store

Begin with the copy for your website, which helps form a consistent narrative for your business and guides the design, imagery and layout that follows. Make sure your text is engaging, to the point, and tailored to your audience. Use keywords and search terms to help boost your SEO (search engine optimisation) and make it easier for people to find you. Platforms like Google AdWords Keyword Planner or Ahrefs can help you identify popular local search terms.

Now it’s time to bring your website to life. There are many beautiful and engaging pre-built themes and templates that can help you showcase your brand in its best light. Through intuitive drag and drop features, you can quickly and easily create an eye-catching website that represents your brand and looks fantastic on any device. As you create your website, adding security protections such as an SSL Certificate, can help to protect your website and build trust with your customers.

Security protections are especially important if you’re an eCommerce business, collecting personal information and payment details from your customers. Nine million households shopped online in the last year, so if you’re selling products and services via your own online store on your website, ensure you have a secure, streamlined online store offering a variety of payment and shipping methods. Before turning your website or online store live, test and test again in ‘preview mode’.

Promote, analyse and refine

SEO can boost your visibility on search engines results, but there are many other ways to help customers find your website. Four in five (82 per cent) consumers follow a brand or business on social media, so use your channels to steer followers back to your site and boost engagement on channels that people use frequently. Create website listings on Yelp and Google My Business and utilise email marketing as a cost- and time-effective promotional tool to help draw attention to deals, discounts or interesting content on your website.

The most effective sites are continuously analysed and refined. Google Analytics can help you understand your traffic, page views, bounce rates and lots of other activity on your website. Your hosting provider likely also has their own analytics you can deep dive into – for example through GoDaddy Websites + Marketing’s analytics feature, you can benefit from tailored, data-driven advice and recommendations which help you identify what is and isn’t working on your website.

It’s never been easier or more affordable to create a website and online presence that works just as hard for your business as you do. By being clear with your purpose, using simple yet sophisticated design tools and being strategic in your promotion and analysis, you can build a website that helps your business stand out and thrive into the future.

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