It’s really tempting to dive right into building a website. Perhaps you don’t look forward to building a website, but you might be in a hurry to get something up and live for the world to see. I get it and I’ve been there.
But hold your horses! There are three things you need before you build your website. You can think of this as a guide to keep yourself on track as you plan.
#1 You need a brand.
So many people think that a brand starts and ends with a logo, but that’s just not the case.
A brand is not a product, logo, website or name. Instead, it defines more abstract and often intangible aspects of your company or organization’s identity, including your mission and values. Your branding should be a direct answer to the question “who are you and why do you exist?” where “you” is your company.
The answers to the following questions will inform every business decision you make, from the copy you write and the items you sell to the colors you use and where you put your time and money.
- What is your purpose or mission?
- What do you value as a company?
- What do you offer?
- Whom do you serve?
- What makes you unique?
Once you have the answers to these questions, you have the ingredients you need for a killer brand that will connect the dots between you, your offer, and your audience.
Dig in deeper with my Build a Better Brand workbook to build a really solid foundation for your business and, by extension, your website.
#2 You need content.
This is often the most difficult part for my clients. Honestly, it’s difficult for me, too. Words are powerful, and we want to say all the right things. It can be hard to know the difference between “enough” and “too much.”
At minimum, you’ll need the following for your website:
- A mission statement
- A short bio for your About page (it may be about you or your business, depending on the focus of your brand(
- At least one call-to-action that tells visitors what to do next. Examples include:
- Get in touch
- Contact Us
- Book Now
- Sign up for our newsletter
- Get on the waiting list
- Learn More
- What you offer. The kind of content that goes here varies greatly depending on your industry and the products or services you offer. But you have to tell visitors what you are selling or offering.
The best websites go much deeper than this, but you’ll see in the next section that it’s okay to…
#3 …Keep it simple!
When you’re just launching your website, it’s okay to keep it simple in the beginning. In fact, I encourage it.
Unless you have a very clear vision of the customer experience for your website or what you do inherently requires a more complicated website, you can create a simple website to fit your initial needs and then expand as needed.
Just how simple are we talkin’? Depending on your business and offer, you could have a ONE page website called a “click-to-scroll.” Instead of your menu clicking through to several pages, it can link to different sections on your home page. It’s called “click-to-scroll” because when you click on the menu item, your page scrolls to the relevant section on your page.
Need more help?
To gain even more clarity as you plan your website, be sure to check out my free Website Planner.