What we need for your website

Just basics to start

These are of course the absolute minimums to get started.

For a simple website, this is what you need.

  • Purchase a domain and hosting. We provide this if needed.
  • Put together what content, or what you would like to communicate with people. The who, what, when, where, why, how…
  • Graphics you will use for branding and website. We can help if you don’t have any.

A much more comprehensive list is listed below.

With the speed of everything on the internet these days, everyone seems to want to just “Flick the switch” and get online. Well, I have learned over the years that there is much more to consider if you are really going to be successful with your online campaigns. This information is designed not to overwhelm and confuse you, but educate and prepare you to not set yourself up for failure. If you find this all confusing or just too much, I have put together a list I like to call “Baby Steps to getting online”

How to get found online explained from a kids point of view

In this example, we are going to talk about getting online for someone who sells only 1 thing, wiggly worms.
If we were really dealing with a 4-year-old, every one of these would be followed by “WHY” or “HOW”, for this example we are going to not answer those here.

  • “Hi, my name is Tiffany and I sell wiggly worms”
  • “You can find me at www.wigglyworms.com”
    Create a web-page about wiggly worms and your web pages must talk about wiggly worms.
    Talk about the fact that you sell wiggly worms in places like Youtube, Facebook, and Twitter.
  • “Hi YouTube! We make wiggly worms, see how we do it, check out our website at www.wigglyworms.com
    The more other places that have links that point back to your website talking about how you sell wiggly worms the better.
    your business should be listed in as many online directories as possible
  • “You want as many people talking about what you do and how to find you as possible”
    That’s really it!

While this is greatly simplified, it really is that easy to get started. Sometimes people can get bogged down with information overload and not do anything at all, which is the worst thing you can do.

Comprehensive list for your website

A More Complete List

Complete Web Design Checklist

Use this “Complete Checklist” as a guide, and provide as much information as you can. This list is a great starting point of recommended items that will help you put your best foot forward with your web design project.

  • What is the budget, if any, for web design and marketing and ongoing maintenance? If there is not an adequate budget for this project, can some of the features and functionality be phased in? Maybe start with a simple site and add eCommerce later, for example?
  • Domain Names and where will the site be hosted? We can provide and these should be from the same company.
  • Do you have a list of all relevant domain names you would like, or does your company own the domain(s) and have access to the domain registration info?
  • Does your website require an SSL? Almost always this should be yes! If selling anything online this is an absolute requirement.
  • Top competitors’ web addresses.
  • Any websites that you like (jot down what you liked about each address).
  • Any websites that you dislike (and why).
  • Your Company Info name, address of the business, etc.
  • Contact information for inquiries.
  • Company stationery/business card.
  • Profiles of your employees and management.
  • Your company’s mission statement, goals, etc.
  • Recent press releases and/or articles if any were written about your company.
  • Portfolio of work/projects.
  • Your Products and Services, with descriptions of services offered.
  • If implementing an eCommerce site.
  • Product catalog if you have, or would like one?
  • Images of your products. I can help if you have none.
  • How will eCommerce transactions be handled and processed?
  • Descriptions of products to be sold via the web site.
  • Pricing sheet – Spreadsheets with product info can be helpful.
  • Specials and/or Special events.
  • You’re target audience if you know.
  • Descriptions of your ideal customer, if you know.
  • Best selling products or services currently.
  • What makes your offering different or appealing and/or what are the strengths of your products or services.
  • What are the hot buttons for your product or service?
  • What is the problem you are solving for your customers?
  • How much time or effort does your product save customers?
  • Company Logo (original graphic files are the best to get)Don’t forget to include videos in this process.
  • Photos relating to your industry.
  • Photos of your business.
  • Photos of your employees/management.
  • Photos relating to your services.
  • Keywords/SEO.
  • Compile a list of keywords and key phrases you think your website should be targeting.
  • Are these words the same as what your audience might use to search for your products or services? Be sure to put yourself in your customer’s shoes.
  • Client testimonials.
  • Creating New Content.
  • Are you developing the content internally?
  • Do you need to enlist a copywriter for partial or full copywriting assistance?
  • Who within your organization will be responsible for updates? Sometimes this can require training one or more people if you want to do this yourself?
  • Who with your organization should receive web form submissions and notifications?
  • Social Media.
  • What social media does your company participate in?
  • There are various methods of integrating Social Media into the website, that can save huge amounts of work. I will explain.
  • Do you own and have control over all the usernames and passwords for those accounts?
  • Do you need to create them from scratch?
  • Marketing Information.
  • Samples of existing marketing materials.
  • How will you promote the site to your existing users and customers?
  • Will you be doing any other types of marketing, such as mailers, to attract new users and customers?

Summary
The more of these items collected, you will be in a great position to craft a website that will position your company in the best possible light.

The objective with our website designs is to weave a compelling story about your company and its products and service which will be compelling enough to get people to inquire, thereby generating leads and sales for your organization. This is our objective with every website we build.

Beginning a new website project can be a daunting and intimidating task. There are so many moving parts it is easy to overlook some of them. This doesn’t just go for the web designer; it goes for the client as well.

I hope this list gives you some confidence and sets you in the right direction.