So you are ready to build your first website with Zibster. We find that about 90% of our new customers already have a website when they join. Zibster’s Jumpstart program is perfect for you, where we will take your existing content and apply it to the template your choice, for free!
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For the 10% or so of you who do not have a website already, this blog will tell you the best way for you to get started. You already know that a website is essential for entrepreneurs, small businesses, home-based businesses, and anybody selling products or services.
Creating a website for your small business can be easier than you think. Whether you do it yourself or let us do it for you, it will be easier if you understand these steps, which are an important part of the process to create your small business website.
If you're selling online services or products, the benefit of having a website is obvious. But even if you don't sell anything directly online, your website puts information about you, your business, and services offered on the internet. Most important, your website should tell about your background, experience, and other credentials to build your credibility and give potential customers more confidence when deciding to do business with you.
First, the basics. What is your website going to do for you? Is it simply to provide information? Or will ecommerce be part of what you need? Knowing what you plan on doing with your website is an important first step because it will guide you on how to develop it going forward.
Consider your domain name very carefully. A straightforward domain name goes far to make your site look trustworthy and relevant. You can purchase your domain from Zibster control panel whenever you are ready. Hosting is provided to you as part of your membership plan, so you don’t have to be concerned about that.
Now let’s start planning actually building your website. Try to keep in mind, not only are you going to use your website, your customers will be using it too! Zibster is a template based system with a sophisticated Content Management System (CMS) where many things are done automatically.
Whether you are a non-profit, consultant, dog groomer, or roofer, you should be able to find a template that meets your requirements. You decide how many pages you need and how they are arranged. With Zibster you can add as many pages as you need. With ecommerce you can have as many products as you wish.
The starting point is certainly your navigation menu. There is always a Home page, but you get to choose what the main menu pages are (you can even have submenus). It's important to think carefully about how you want to organize and structure the information on your website to give you maximum flexibility. Even if you only end up with three pages initially, it's important to consider what you might add on later.
Do plenty of research. What do see online that you like? What are your competitors doing? Let our samples page be your guide. They are expertly built and there may be something very close to what you need. Even if you find a perfect match for your business, you will need to provide your own content. You will need your own branding (logo, color scheme), text, and images.
Content is the most important part of your website. It needs to be interesting to your visitors and convey the right kind of information so customers actually read it instead of moving on to the next website. When you write text, think about it from an advertising perspective. Keep it short, informative, and compelling.
In addition to text, you also need images. Photography and graphics are used to add to the text content or sometimes even replace it. Making the pages professional looking is particularly important as visual impact and appeal are a key part of any website.
Images can include stock photography, images of your products, headshots of yourself and other staff members, or other graphics that might illustrate your service you're selling. We offer free stock photography to fill in any gaps. Zibster also offers a logo design service if you are interested.
Good luck, and as always our Pro Customer Support is only a phone call away. Jumpstart is for all new customers, so contact us when you have your content ready to go.