10 Things You Should Know About Building a Business Website


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You’ve made the decision to move forward with a new website for your business.  Now what…?  What do you need to know before you get started?  How much will it cost?  How long will it take? What should I expect?  Even if you already have a website, the following list provides valuable information that is important for all website owners.

  1. Decide on a budget for the initial development of your website. Often we like to dream of all the things we want in a perfect world and then are disappointed that we can’t afford that perfection, and give up in frustration. A journey begins with a single step, and building an effective business website begins the same way. Start with with a budget you can afford. If you are hiring a web developer, a good start up site will cost around $1,000 to $2,000, whereas a custom marketing site would generally begin around $5,000 and go up from there. Doing it yourself costs less but will require the time and the learning curve.

  1. Develop goals for your website. Have specific and quantifiable measures for the success of your website as it relates to your business. Without business oriented goals, a website is a waste of money.

  1. Budget website maintenance as a regular yearly expense. Websites need constant updating to continue to assist your business and accomplish the goals that you have set. Maintenance should be done as often as possible – a minimum of quarterly.  If you are hiring a web developer, typical maintenance fees range from $100 to $300 a quarter.

  1. Your website MUST match your other marketing materials. Your website should look like your business cards, brochures, flyers, postcards, signage, etc.

  1. Always remember that you have 3 seconds from the moment someone lands on your home page to get them to STAY. Therefore, you must have an engaging design, compelling content, or some call to action that will entice them to want more! (You can have the most wonderful content in the world, but you need a good design and layout to get your visitors to stay and look around!)

  1. Create a website for your target audience – not YOU! It doesn’t matter if you like your website… what matters is that your target audience likes it and identifies with it.

  1. Understand that there is always room for improvement. One of the best and worst things about a website is that it is never done. You can always improve upon what you have. So when you get your first website, understand that you may not be able to afford “the perfect” site initially, but you can get there if you have a solid foundation.

  1. You need to have a long lasting relationship with a web developer. It is very common for small businesses to feel that by doing it themselves they are saving money. Unfortunately, the Internet has become such a major focus of business, that “do-it-yourself”, to be effective, can become a full time job. That does not mean that you can’t do many things yourself, but know your limits.  You are NOT in the business of web development. You need to focus on YOUR business. A web developer will play a vital role in your business because they will be the ones you will work with to update and enhance your website over the years and help you with the more technical issues. Pick someone who will be there year after year and is willing to work with you on an ongoing basis.

  1. A website is like a brochure or any hard copy marketing material. If you don’t hand it out no one will know you have it. People often think once their website is released everyone will find their business. Not true! You need to have a plan of action to get the word out!

  1. A quality website can’t be built in one week. Depending on what kind of website you want and what your needs are, it can take between 1  month to 1 year with an average on small websites of about 2-3  months.

Now you are ready to get started!  You are now armed with the knowledge you need to have appropriate expectations for developing a successful business website.

 Do you have any tips  from your own website development experience that you would like to add?  Please share them in the comments.  Thanks for reading and sharing!     


About John Moore

John Moore is the co-founder of SonicSpider, LLC in San Diego County, California. John is our head Internet developer, overseeing the direction of our technical services. He has been programming in a variety of languages for more than 25 years, first as the owner of the consulting and system architect/design company, Micro-Phyla Systems, which provided services to enterprise level companies, and then as a principle with SonicSpider LLC. SonicSpider has two primary divisions, SonicWebTech for programming, ecommerce solutions, and general web oriented technical assistance - and RightStart Websites, specializing in WordPress, which provide low cost web packages and website enhancements that can span your needs from "do it yourself" to "do it all for me". John is also a PayPal Certified Developer and has extensive experience with many payment gateway solutions.
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