In WP-Tonic 126, Jonathan Denwood, Jackie D’Elia, Kim Shivler and I focused on the surprisingly-overlooked fact that your website does not exist in a vacuum. It’s part of your overall business marketing strategy (on and offline) and your online marketing strategy.
New business owners, particularly solopreneurs, may not have a strategy for their businesses, or may not have articulated it. This is one reason that it’s worth engaging in a paid discovery phase with your web or marketing agency: to help you identify your goals for your business, your marketing goals, and the place your website has in meeting them.
If you don’t figure out why you want a website, you’re inevitably going to be disappointed in the website you get. And if you don’t know how you’re going to measure the success of that website, you won’t know whether you got your money’s worth from your developer.
Building a brand from scratch takes time. If your business is new at the time you build your website, you may not have an email list or social media following to help bring people to the site, and no matter how well you optimize your site copy for search engines, not many people will find you at first.
A Few Highlights
- When we talk about “traffic”, we forget that we really mean people.
- Spend money on creating content, not just building a container for it.
- Plan your business model and know how many sales you have to make to be profitable (or just break even).
- Don’t put obstacles in your visitor’s path to finding what they need.
- Expect your website to require a marketing budget comparable with local TV, radio, and print advertising (whether you are using those channels or not).
- People will compare your site to that of your direct competitors, so make sure your site is at least as good as theirs, both in how it looks and what it does.