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Building the-perfect-website-for-your-small-business


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Building the-perfect-website-for-your-small-business

  1. 1. Tech Made Simple: Building the Perfect Website for Your Small Business
  2. 2. e-Business Now Founding Partners
  3. 3. Workshop Agenda What We Will Cover These Topics are covered in the Applying T echnology to Jumpstart Your Sales Workshop <ul><li>Importance & Benefits of a Web Presence </li></ul><ul><li>Internet Strategy for Your Business </li></ul><ul><li>Key Elements of Effective Web Design </li></ul><ul><li>Web Development </li></ul><ul><li>Measuring Results </li></ul>What We Will Not Cover <ul><li>Social Media </li></ul><ul><li>Search Engine Optimization </li></ul><ul><li>Internet Marketing </li></ul>
  5. 5. Every Business Needs a Web Presence <ul><li>To inform potential customers about your business with relevant and concise information </li></ul><ul><li>To advertise and describe offerings and location </li></ul><ul><li>To sell products and services </li></ul><ul><li>To generate business leads </li></ul><ul><li>To brand your business and provide contact information </li></ul><ul><li>To be “ found” by potential customers using search engines </li></ul><ul><li>To build a foundation for customer interaction (ordering, returns, feedback, etc.) </li></ul>Keep in mind: 78 percent of Americans use the Internet every day .
  6. 6. Benefits of Having a Web Presence <ul><li>B2C (Business to Consumer): </li></ul><ul><ul><li>43% of all retail sales are expected to be influenced by or </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>made on the Internet by 2012 (U.S. Department of Commerce) </li></ul></ul><ul><li>B2B (Business to Business): </li></ul><ul><ul><li>83% of businesses use the Internet to research and find </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>vendors (Enquirio – B2B survey) </li></ul></ul>= Increased Sales Professional Web Presence + More Eyes Looking At Your Business
  7. 7. Marketing Plan & Internet Strategy Your Marketing Plan: <ul><li>Defines your target market </li></ul><ul><li>Details your competitive strategy </li></ul><ul><li>Documents a pricing strategy </li></ul><ul><li>Establishes a marketing budget </li></ul><ul><li>Defines your Internet strategy’s role in your marketing effort </li></ul>
  8. 8. Consider Target Audience & Competitors Target Audience <ul><li>Who are they? </li></ul><ul><li>What are their characteristics (age, income, tech savvy)? </li></ul><ul><li>What are they looking for on your website? </li></ul>Competitors <ul><li>Who are they? </li></ul><ul><li>What do their websites do well? </li></ul><ul><li>What could they improve on? </li></ul><ul><li>What are the opportunities for your business? </li></ul>
  9. 9. Goals for Your Website What do you need your website to do? The answers will create your Internet strategy = a measurable plan of action using the Internet to get desired results. Think about: <ul><li>Your business goals </li></ul><ul><li>Your marketing goals </li></ul><ul><li>Your target audience </li></ul><ul><li>Your competition </li></ul>
  10. 10. Types of Websites <ul><li>Brochure </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Informational </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Goal = Lead Submission, informational download, or Phone Call </li></ul></ul><ul><li>eCommerce </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Product Focused </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Goal = Sale/Request for Proposal </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Community </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Communal intreaction </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Goal = Engagement and participation </li></ul></ul>
  11. 11. 4 Functions of a Website <ul><li>Promote </li></ul><ul><li>Publish </li></ul><ul><li>Communicate </li></ul><ul><li>Serve </li></ul>your business by telling customers about it information that’s useful to your customers with customers customers by handling business functions
  12. 12. What Functions Does Your Website Need? A website doesn’t have to be complicated. Here are some components different types of businesses might want to include: <ul><li>Restaurant or Retail Store: Address, photo of location, product photos, menu, phone and e-mail contacts, map, hours, online reservation tool </li></ul><ul><li>Consulting or Accounting Business: Most of the above plus photos/bios of key personnel, explanation of services provided, client list, appointment scheduler, articles or tips from owner </li></ul><ul><li>E-commerce Business: Product photos/descriptions, online ordering and payment, frequently asked questions/help, shipping policies and costs </li></ul>
  13. 13. Don’t forget… <ul><li>Reviews </li></ul><ul><ul><li>On your site or on sites like Google </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Ability to share </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Allow visitors to share your content easily </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Interaction </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Ability for visitors to leave comments </li></ul></ul>
  16. 16. What Is a Website A website is a collection of Web pages, images, videos or other digital assets that are addressed to a particular domain name.
  17. 17. <ul><li> or </li></ul><ul><li>Keep it short and simple </li></ul><ul><li>About $10/year at most domain providers </li></ul><ul><li>Buy your domain name before someone else does! </li></ul>Web Address = Domain Name ADDRESS (WEB DOMAIN)
  18. 18. LAND (HOSTING) <ul><li>Your website needs to be hosted on servers, which are computers used to store your Web files. </li></ul><ul><li>Starting at a few dollars per month </li></ul><ul><li>Ask about: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Uptime </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Support </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Backup </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Number of domains </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Shared or dedicated servers </li></ul></ul>Web Hosting
  20. 20. Effective Websites Are… <ul><li>Professional </li></ul><ul><li>Consistent </li></ul><ul><li>With similar sites </li></ul><ul><li>With website usage </li></ul><ul><li>With your brand </li></ul><ul><li>Within your site </li></ul><ul><li>Simple </li></ul>
  21. 21. Elements of Website Navigation <ul><li>Top navigation bar should be constant across pages. </li></ul><ul><li>Side navigation bars are optional. </li></ul><ul><li>Bottom bar should consist of simple text links to your site; it is important for search engine ranking. </li></ul><ul><li>Page body is where you put that page ’ s relevant information. </li></ul>
  22. 22. Tips for Navigation <ul><li>Organized structure </li></ul><ul><li>Keep it simple – users should be able to get anywhere in 2-3 clicks </li></ul><ul><li>Keep important links, content, etc. “above the fold” </li></ul><ul><li>Use white space to simplify </li></ul>
  23. 23. How Users Scan Sites: Hot Spots “ F- Pattern”: Focus user’s attention <ul><li>USERS DON’T READ – they scan! </li></ul><ul><li>Put most important elements in places where eyes naturally go. </li></ul>
  24. 24. Using Color, Graphics, and Text <ul><li>Use colors that work well together </li></ul><ul><li>Keep colors consistent with your brand </li></ul><ul><li>Keep text size readable </li></ul><ul><li>Keep text and background color readable </li></ul><ul><li>Use high-quality photographs </li></ul><ul><li>Avoid sound unless that is your business </li></ul>
  25. 25. What Is Web Content? “ Content” refers to any written material on your website, including: <ul><li>Titles </li></ul><ul><li>Headlines </li></ul><ul><li>Product names </li></ul><ul><li>Product descriptions </li></ul><ul><li>“ About Us” page </li></ul><ul><li>Help page </li></ul><ul><li>FAQs </li></ul><ul><li>Customer service information </li></ul><ul><li>Articles </li></ul><ul><li>Blogs </li></ul>
  26. 26. Writing Effective Web Content <ul><li>Know your target audience </li></ul><ul><li>Keep it short and simple </li></ul><ul><li>Headings 8 words or less </li></ul><ul><li>Paragraphs 40-70 words </li></ul><ul><li>Write active content </li></ul><ul><li>Write for how people search </li></ul><ul><li>Keywords </li></ul><ul><li>Google and Bing offer Search-Based Keyword Tool </li></ul><ul><li>Edit and proofread </li></ul>
  28. 28. Cybersecurity and Your Business Why should a small business be concerned with information security? <ul><li>Protect customer information </li></ul><ul><li>Protect employee information </li></ul><ul><li>Protect business partner/vendor/supplier information </li></ul><ul><li>Protect your business’s information </li></ul>Protect for: <ul><li>Confidentiality </li></ul><ul><li>Integrity </li></ul><ul><li>Availability </li></ul>
  29. 29. What’s at Risk? What do you risk if you fail to protect your data? <ul><li>Fines from banks, credit card issuers, state and federal agencies </li></ul><ul><li>Lost productivity </li></ul><ul><li>Lost sales </li></ul><ul><li>Costs/time to repair damage </li></ul><ul><li>Loss of trust </li></ul><ul><li>Lost reputation </li></ul><ul><li>Legal costs </li></ul>
  30. 30. 10 Steps to Cybersecurity <ul><li>Use and update antivirus/anti-spyware software </li></ul><ul><li>Secure your Internet connection (firewall via WAP/router or ISP) </li></ul><ul><li>Turn on the firewall on each computer </li></ul><ul><li>Patch/update OS and applications </li></ul><ul><li>Regularly back up data </li></ul><ul><li>Secure wireless access </li></ul><ul><li>Train employees in security processes </li></ul><ul><li>Require individual user accounts </li></ul><ul><li>Use strong passwords and change them often </li></ul><ul><li>Limit employee access to data/limit installation authority </li></ul>
  31. 31. Resources For more information: <ul><li>Federal Communications Commission (FCC) website: </li></ul><ul><li>U.S. Chamber of Commerce Guide to Cyber Security for Small Business </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul>
  33. 33. Web Hosting Choices If you build your own site, you can host it on your own servers, or use a Web hosting company. As discussed earlier, you’ll need to compare packages depending on your needs. Some of the top Web hosting companies include: <ul><li> </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul>
  34. 34. Using Web Templates There are many template resources available to you. Here are a few for you to consider. <ul><li> </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul>
  35. 35. Consider Blogging Tools (CMS <ul><li>What are blogging tools? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Build a site in minutes </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>CMS – Content Management System </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>“ Themes” </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Types </li></ul><ul><ul><li>WordPress </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Drupal </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Google Sites </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Joomla! </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Movable Type </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>And dozens more… </li></ul></ul>
  36. 36. One-Stop Web Shop Here are some popular one-stop Web shops: <ul><li> </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul>
  37. 37. Choosing the Right Option When assessing your development options, consider the following: <ul><li>Your time </li></ul><ul><li>Your tech skills </li></ul><ul><li>Your budget </li></ul>
  38. 38. Choosing the Right Web Team Consider: <ul><li>Experience </li></ul><ul><li>Cost </li></ul><ul><li>Similar companies / similar websites </li></ul><ul><li>Professionalism </li></ul><ul><li>Elements of desired site </li></ul><ul><li>Future needs </li></ul><ul><li>Maintenance and growth plans </li></ul><ul><li>References </li></ul>
  39. 39. Cost & Legal Considerations <ul><li>How much will it cost? </li></ul><ul><li>Payment terms </li></ul><ul><li>Overall estimate </li></ul><ul><li>Have written contract covering: </li></ul><ul><li>Price </li></ul><ul><li>Schedule </li></ul><ul><li>Portability to new Web host </li></ul><ul><li>Content and technology ownership </li></ul><ul><li>Support and Service Level Agreement </li></ul><ul><li>Detailed Scope of Work </li></ul><ul><li>Documentation </li></ul><ul><li>Release of copyright </li></ul>
  41. 41. Your Site Is Up - Now What? A successful website generates measurable results for your business. <ul><li>Know your goals for the website </li></ul>To get the most from your site, follow this 3-step process: <ul><li>Continually adjust site as needed </li></ul><ul><li>Measure results </li></ul>All major search engines (Bing, Google and Yahoo) offer sophisticated free analytics tools to help you track and benchmark your website results.
  42. 42. What Should You Measure? <ul><li>Number of site visitors </li></ul><ul><li>Individual page impressions </li></ul><ul><li>Average visit length </li></ul><ul><li>Most/least popular pages </li></ul><ul><li>Most popular site entry pages </li></ul><ul><li>Where users come from (sites or search engine phrases) </li></ul><ul><li>Number of inquiries, leads or sales generated </li></ul><ul><li>Conversion rates </li></ul><ul><li>Total sales volume online </li></ul><ul><li>Average purchase per online customer </li></ul>
  43. 43. Module In Review Summary <ul><li>Benefits of a Web presence </li></ul><ul><li>Developing an Internet strategy </li></ul><ul><li>Components of a website </li></ul><ul><li>Elements of effective Web design </li></ul><ul><li>Developing your website </li></ul><ul><li>Measuring Results </li></ul>
  44. 44. Next Steps <ul><li>How-To Guides </li></ul><ul><li>Connect with a SCORE Mentor </li></ul><ul><li>SCORE has over 13,000 successful and experienced executives with small business know-how that want to help you </li></ul><ul><li>Visit for more information </li></ul><ul><li>Take the Share Your Feedback survey </li></ul>
  45. 45. Tech Made Simple: Building the Perfect Website for Your Small Business