For anyone who is just setting up their website or has contracted someone to do their website, the biggest challenge is usually deciding on what content should be added. Here is a list of the steps you might want to take in making your decisions.
Research current websites on the internet, specifically those that are in your industry. For example, if you are a Virtual Assistant you would use that “term” to search or similarly, a health & fitness coach would search under those terms. Then start checking out the sites that come up. Make a list of what content is on each site and whether or not you would choose to add these items to your site.
The most common tabs (pages) you would have within your site are the Home, About, Contact Us, Links/Resources, Services, Site Map and possibly a Portfolio page. If you have a large site, you may want to include a Site Map tab which categorizes pages and information on your site with links back to the page where the content can be found. Additional pages may be adding your Blog or Newsletter, or a list of your Products for sale.
This is a very important page as this is the first contact many clients have with your Company. It needs to have a clean, uncluttered look and clearly illustrate how to navigate through your site. When a customer sees your Home Page, they should be able to easily identify what your Company is all about.
This should include information about you and your expertise (if you are a small operation). If you have a “mission statement”, this would be a good place for it.
The information here is the Company Name, Address (optional), phone numbers for land line, extensions (if applicable), fax, email(s) if you have one or several, e.g. sales@yourcompany, info@yourcompany, etc., your Instant Message accounts (ie. Messenger, Google, etc. if you want to offer them as a way of the clients contacting you directly) and Skype, if applicable.
This would be a list of the services you offer including brief descriptions (optional) and possibly your pricing structure and whether you offer hourly or retainer or package pricing (optional). Information, as well, could be included to indicate you do individual customized quotes or offer discounts or rebates.
This is especially important if you have the opportunity to show clients the types of work you have done, e.g. a website designer, a logo designer.
A good example would be a Virtual Assistant who provides links and information to the Virtual Assistant Industry. If you are a Health & Wellness Coach, the links might be to Exercise information, nutritional guidelines, recipe sites for healthy eating, etc.
Where you place your content and information is entirely up to you. Items you may want to include would be the logos of organizations you belong to, logos of the Social Media Networks you have joined, Testimonials from those who recommend your services and/or products. You may also want to add a Free Quote page where you would set up a form or table whereby prospective clients can submit their basic requirements for your services and/or products. A “Call to Action” on your site invites visitors to “opt-in” (enter their name and email address) to get a free report or ebook or audio or video). When they enter their name and email information, you are gathering that data to build a mailing list you can market to in the future. If you have set up a payment system for your clients, you may want to add the logos for Paypal, Mastercard, Visa or American Express with links embedded for the client to click.
As well, you may want to add Affiliate Links to your site sometime in the future so plan for where you want to place those.
You or your website developer would also have to identify what “keywords” need to appear in text on your site for the Search Engines to be able to find. Pictures are a good addition to visually enhance your site, but moderation is a good rule. However, search engines don’t like “flash” images.
For those who already have a website, do an “audit” on it to see if you have included all the above.
Diane L. Coville