So you have a business and want a new website, but you don’t know where to begin. In this brief tutorial, you can get the idea of how to start planning for your website and what to expect.
First things first
The first part involved in planning for your website is to think about what your site navigation will be. This list will be the backbone of your website. A good starting point is to think about what pages and information you want to share with your users.
Surely you need a home page, which will be the main page on your website and ideally is used to summarize what your business has to offer. An About page may be required if you have a long history that you wish to share with your users (if it is a short biography, though, you may simply be able to incorporate it in the home page). A Contact page will be necessary so your users and clients can find out how to contact you. But what else? Some other pages that you may desire or require can include:
- A photo gallery page
- A video page
- A services page
- A portfolio page
- A team page
Another important thing to think about is a logo. Do you have one? If you do, do you have the Vector file (in .EPS or .AI format)? If you have the vector files of your logo, that will immensely help the designer for your website. If not, it may be necessary to create (or recreate) one. Your logo is how clients will identity your business and vector files are scalable, which will help the designer in creating your website. Some web design businesses employ skilled graphic designers who can help create a logo and branding if needed.
Next up is the design of the website. If you have an idea of what you want the website to look like or the colours that you want used and can convey that to the designer, it will strengthen the design process. Additionally, if there are a few websites you like the look of and may want the designer to use as a basis for the design, forwarding the website links can make the design process even stronger.
There are generally 3 elements to any website. Here is what you can expect to see the designer create for a concept of your website:
- The header: Includes logo, navigation, social networking links
- The body: Includes main content area, sidebar (for secondary content)
- The footer: Includes copyright information, navigation recap, tertiary content
Giving the designer your feedback is important, otherwise they will not know if you want something changed, want something added, or are dissatisfied with the design. Be critical and positive so your website can reflect your business and be as good as it can be.
Your website is the online presence of your business. It should appear how you want it to appear so it can reflect your business as professionally as possible. You are the expert on your business and the website designer is the expert on creating websites, by working together you can create a strong business relationship.