5 Mistakes People Make When Setting Up Their Website
When you set up a website for your company, online store, or as a self-employed individual, it’s a great opportunity to establish an online presence and promote your brand. Everything on your website should be arranged to convey the main ideas behind your brand and the problems you can solve by providing your products and services.
However, there is one more thing. You should always keep in mind that your website is where people arrive after discovering your business through Google, social media, ads and other websites. It is basically your storefront, the key point of your business. Therefore, the first impression your website leaves in the visitors will be one of the main factors that determine whether they stay or not.
Improve the design, layout, loading speed and SEO of your website as much as you can before you start promoting. It is still easier to invest some more time and effort into it than to get back the traffic you lost with a faulty website. It’s not easy to establish a strong online presence, especially if you have little to no experience in marketing strategies and web design.
We can show you the most common mistakes that businesses make when setting up their website so you can find out more easily whether everything is okay with your website or not. Once you get these 5 things straight, you will have a powerful website that your business can truly rely on.
1. The Lack of Marketing Strategy and Business Plan
When you open a store, it doesn’t necessarily mean that people will be waiting in long lines in front of it on the first day. Many people set up their website and expect the same thing, tons of visitors that somehow end up on their website. Unfortunately, an attractive domain name doesn’t mean that it will drive you a lot of traffic.
There are millions of popular websites on the Internet, so if you don’t put some effort into it, people will never find your website. If your website is the only source of your income then this might be a hard pill to swallow, but working on your marketing strategy always pays off. You need to arouse people’s interest and make them find your site on purpose, and there are many ways to do that.
Having a strict business plan and implementing marketing strategies are essential if you want to run a successful business. It’s important to have it all planned out before you start investing time and money into it. Rushing it just to have your website up and running as soon as possible usually doesn’t lead anywhere.
Come Up With a Business Plan
A complete business plan is not as complicated as you might think. It’s definitely not an essay that covers every little step you need to make in your business. However, it’s a nice guide that can actually help you to make the right decision whenever the circumstances require you to.
A business plan is all about answering the following questions as best as you can:
- What is your target audience and which trends you want to follow?
- What products and services do you want to sell?
- What are the main problems of your target audience that you want to solve with your products?
- Are there other similar businesses? If so, what are their weaknesses?
- What do you want to focus on while building up your online presence?
An Unbeatable Marketing Strategy
A powerful marketing strategy consists of a few steps you need to go through and a few useful tools you need to use in your work. The main goal is to attract more potential customers to your website. Let us show you the following proven methods that can help you to achieve your goal:
- Use a popular ecommerce analytics tool. One of the best tools you can use is Google Analytics
- Do a little research to understand the main differences between PPC (pay per click) and SEO
- The more social media profiles you have for your business, the better. These are the platforms where you can reach the most people
- Consider joining an affiliate marketing program and start selling through the most preferable third-party company
While working on your marketing strategy and business plan might require a lot of research and hard work, they will eventually lead you to a powerful website as the end result. We encourage you to look for online forums, guides and videos about marketing strategies because people love to share their ideas about this subject.
By trying out some of the most popular strategies in action, you will see how they work and it will help you to choose the perfect one for your business. Also, if you are not experienced in PPC and SEO, then don’t hesitate to find a professional that is ready to help you since these require more in-depth knowledge.
2. It Is Harder Than You Thought
When inexperienced businessmen see some popular websites that generate a huge amount of revenue, this is the first thing that pops into their mind: Easy money! Then they think about quickly setting up their own website and how it is going to fill their pockets. Unfortunately, that’s not how it works.
A website is not all about receiving orders from customers and shipping the products to them. There are a lot of tiny things to improve. You will need to spend plenty of time experimenting until you find the techniques that really drive potential customers to your site and make them buy your product. Of course, there will be unsatisfied customers in the process as well until you fix the flaws of your site.
Just like a local business, a business website also requires you to keep everything in order day by day. A business is like a machine, it needs all the parts to be in place and properly maintained, otherwise it will only cause problems. A website might seem like something that stays as it is once you set it up, but you will need to change and improve it regularly to ensure its success.
You can assemble a list of all the things you need to work on each day and then go one-by-one until you finish. This will help you to keep your website maintenance consistent and in order.
3. Free Hosting Providers and Bad Ecommerce Platforms
There are a growing number of free hosting providers on the Web, or premium hosting providers that provide a free service. If there are so many free web hosting packages available, why would you even pay for a server? These free services are also faster than ever and you can set them up in a couple of minutes.
Free hosting providers might seem like a good idea on the surface, but there are actually many problems you can face by choosing them. For example, these free options won’t let you have a domain name that is fully your own. As a result, people that visit your website won’t take your business seriously and look for another website instead.
While premium web hosting providers give you a lot of extra features, free hosting services usually limit your website in many ways. You won’t be able to attach social media profiles to your website, which already cuts you off from a huge amount of potential visitors. The worst thing is that you don’t own any part of your website.
The content you upload also belongs to the company that owns the server. So, taking all these disadvantages into account, is it really that much to spend around $10 a month on a premium web hosting package with no limits, only extras? Not really because there are huge differences.
What About the eCommerce Software?
When it comes to eCommerce platforms, you should only focus on choosing one of the most popular options. There are plenty of big names in eCommerce and you can also read countless reviews about them by review sites, blogs and users.
If thousands of people are using particular eCommerce software, you can be sure that it’s regularly updated and effective. There are two different types of eCommerce platforms available:
- There are hosted eCommerce platforms, such as Big Commerce, 3dcart and Shopify
- Other, custom solutions such as plugins and other software that you need to install and apply to your website. The two most popular are WooCommerce and Magento
4. Turning Your Website Into a Blog
WordPress is mainly known as the best CMS for bloggers, yet it’s not recommended for everyone who wants to start a business website. Typically, WordPress is the only option business owners can think of before they set up their website. The reason why this is bad is that the platform might require you lots of additional effort if you want to build up a different type of website.
Don’t get me wrong, WordPress is indeed one of the best and most versatile CMS out there. It’s just that some websites need to be categorized and structured in a specific way and this platform can’t always provide the necessary resources. However, every business website needs to have a blog section where fresh content is provided. It’s great for the SEO of the website and has the potential to generate lots of organic traffic.
But establishing the complete website on a platform that is created for bloggers is definitely a questionable idea. Also, a blog might be a powerful resource but you shouldn’t only focus on providing content there. It surely can attract lots of visitors, but you need to work on the other parts of your website as well to increase conversion.
5. Great Design with Poor Marketing Message
If the design of your website is fresh and clean with a nice selection of colors, fonts and a good layout, you are already halfway to success. Your visitors will be certainly satisfied with the looks, but you need to add something that keeps them engaged and arouses interest. An appealing design can keep them around for some time, but if you don’t seize the opportunity, they will eventually leave and never come back.
Your landing page is a great place to welcome your visitors with a message that summarizes the main goal of your business and gives them an idea about the problems you want to fix with your products. It can also be a catchy text that builds trust in your potential customers and makes them scroll through your front page.
Another method that you should try out is to add call to action links and buttons to specific parts of your content, so that visitors will always something new to check out. This way, you can set up a complete route that leads your visitors through a huge number of pages on your site.
Find the balance between the design and the messages you want to convey. After all, people visited your website because your marketing message made them interested. Welcoming them with a design that is more interesting than your message only leads to rejection.
Of course, you can make a lot more mistakes while setting up and maintaining your website. These were only the 5 most popular ones that we wanted to show you. Make sure that you work on these before your site goes live because each of them can potentially lower your traffic.