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5 Questions to Consider Before Launching a Website

It’s an all too common scenario. A small business makes the commitment that they want to improve page rank, start using social media, or increase traffic through online marketing efforts. Then it happens. Somewhere down the road a hazard sign pops up out of nowhere. The realization occurs that somewhere along the way a vital piece of the puzzle was overlooked when it comes to the website. Depending on the situation, the problem might be easy to address or it may require a lot of time and effort.

Here are some questions to ask when evaluating your site.

1. Did I spend enough time researching my domain name?

Picking the right domain name is important and careful attention should be given when it comes to choosing one. Keep a sharp eye for a domain that’s short, easy to spell, memborable, and relative to the business.

2. Is all my content ready?

Before you make a site live, you’ll need to have content. Depending on your business this may include: photos, sales materials, a mission statement, customer testimonials, video, and a blog. There’s something to the argument of putting a site up and then adjusting over time, but it’s never a bad idea to have as much as possible ready from the beginning and then making changes as you go. At minimum make sure you’re satisifed with your logo, your brand message is clear, and that you have a general concept of what your customers are looking for.

3. Did I invest enough into web design?

The word invest is the only appropriate one here. It’s going to take an investment to have a functional and sharp looking site. Unless you have relative coding experience and know the languages, I’d leave it to a professional. Small businesses with poor looking websites are all too common. Make the investment and you’ll be thankful you did.

4. Was my site built with SEO in mind?

It’s a good idea to always be thinking about search engine optimization and construct a site that’s SEO friendly. This includes careful consideration of keywords, limiting the amount of Flash on your site, naming URL’s properly, and keeping outbound links in check. Just like web design, SEO should be high on your priority list.

Did you know Sparkplug Digital offers a Free SEO Site Audit? We’ll take a look at your site and send you a free report with recommendations for improvement.

5. What about social?

Think about your social media strategy. What channels are you going to use and how will they be represented on your site? Create content with social media in mind and encourage visitors to share. This might include implementing Facebook’s Open Graph and optimizing your site for social bookmarking and social networking services. I recommend AddThis.

Over time you’ll want to make changes and reshape your site according to customer feedback. Those changes will be a lot easier if you’ve set yourself up for success from the beginning.

 

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