IYBI’s latest offering is an infographic about first time web development and web design pit falls designed to help those new to the world of web sites make better decisions
Our latest offering is an infographic about first time web development and web design pit falls designed to help those new to the world of commercial web sites make some better decisions. Creating a website can sometimes feel like renovating – it always ends up taking longer, costing more and causing more grey hairs!
It’s an ongoing process, but here are a few straightforward steps to ensure you get it right first time and ‘future proof’ your website for years to come!
Establishing a purpose is the first step. It’s safe to say that you probably aren’t creating a website because you want to, it’s because you need to. You want more business and a website is a tool you can use to get that. The site is the goal and it needs to appeal to your clients, concentrate on that before you get caught up with how it looks.
Much like in a renovation, having it look pretty can be nice, but it’s nowhere near as important as having plumbing that works and appliances that do what you need them to.
It’s very important to safely set up the site yourself. A trap that many people fall into is allowing someone else to manage your domain name. While it might seem like the perfect solution to allow your tech-savvy acquaintance take care of it all, you should really own your own domain, after all it’s your Intellectual Property! Registering a domain is cheap and only takes about 10 minutes. A small slice of your life and wallet for everlasting peace of mind!
Think about your budget and be realistic about what is possible. We understand it can be tempting to succumb to the ‘$500 website’ scheme but more often than not there can be hidden costs or contracts involved. A website is an investment. It can also be tempting to buy that $500 car but we all know how that ends.
Bottom line: if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is! No budget? A beautiful holding page is a more economical option, gives you a web presence and keeps your dignity intact.
Who is designing your site? Who is building it? There are a myriad of choices out there but taking some time here to get the right one is crucial, beware of cutting corners!
Think of planning like blueprints, no builder would begin without blueprints. Get the foundations right.
If you choose the option of using a freelancer, see if they can give you a timeline for the project and perhaps a contract outlining the work being done. Can they teach you how to use the site afterwards? We love freelancers, and they are great, but there have been known cases of the ‘disappearing designer’ or the ‘AWOL Developer’ who has ‘left the country’. This is often when a job had blown out. Keep communication open and make sure the job is finished.
On the other side of the track if you go with an agency or development team make sure to find out about their production. Do they outsource overseas? What is their process?
Don’t be fooled by an overly helpful sales guy, finding out now will save you countless headaches later. It’s also important to test a website as much as possible before it goes live. Do the links work? How does it look on your iPad and mobile? How does it look on your nan’s PC?
Try and think with the future in mind as much as possible. How will you update your site? How often? What are your web skills like? Discovering an agency’s process and learning what Content Management System (CMS) they use can save you loads!
Some use ‘proprietary CMS’ which is their own infrastructure and can mean you have limited access to what can be changed on your website in the future. If you want to be the person who changes your website in the future you need to understand how it’s done.
Congratulations! Your website is live and it looks beautiful! Nothing to do now but to relax and wait for the calls to flood in, right?
You guessed it, it takes a little more than that. Sites are like race cars. They need maintenance and to be kept fresh to be at the top of their game. Develop a digital strategy and include new, original content that will direct people to your site. Plan a schedule to update on a regular basis to keep those hits snowballing!
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