10 Things Needed Before Starting Your Website Design

So you're ready for a website! That's great! Even better if you chose SOMD Connect & Associates to help you.

But slow down there hoss, not so fast. Whether you choose a web design, or a web developer, a few things are needed before you get started. A good company should ask about the topics listed below. If they don't, proceed with caution!

1. The name of your company & its story.

Every company is different. The name and background of your company should mean

should thing you and your website should show that. Often times, people name their

companies with a back story. Let's say Susan and her family built a day care center

themselves, one block at a time, and she now calls it "Building Blocks Learning Center"

in California, we would want to design her website to express her story.

2. Company vision & branding.

We will want to know about your logo, a possible color scheme to use, and any other design

ideas you might have when designing your web page. We'll ask about your vision of your

company - where do you see your company going, any slogans or mission statements you

may want to include that might make you stand out. Example: Building Blocks Learning

Center - "Building Kids Up One Block At a Time".

3. Domain.

Choosing a domain can sometimes be tricky. Sometimes people want the name of their

company with .com or .net at the end. But what happens if that domain is not available?

The key is to keep it simple, short, but relevant to your name so people can remember.

Let's say Building Blocks Learning Center wanting all four words in their domain, but that

was not available. They have the option of shortening the domain, Building Blocks, or

Building Blocks LC, might possibly work. Sometimes options are extremely limited and

adding a location could help (California). If you don't already have a domain, or don't

know how to decide, don't worry...we can help you through the process.

4. Layout ideas.

Most people know they want or even need a website. A lot of times people do not know

what they want where. We walk you through what pages you want (Home, About Us,

Contact Us, etc) to get an idea of how small or large of a site you want. For example,

Building Blocks would like a "Contact Us" form at the bottom of each page with a

"Locations" tab at the top with the California location as well as Leonardtown

saying "Coming Soon".We can get as custom and creative as you'd like.

5. Functions.

After layout, we'll ask about what kind of functions you want on your website. Having the

right functions and tools can sometimes drive traffic, and increase in clients/customers and

sales. Things like an Online Store, Online Payments, Blogs, or being linked to social media

can also get your company found easier on search engines.

6. Goals.

Knowing you're goals of your website and what you'd like to gain from it will help us

with design placement. If Building Block's goal is to get more children enrolled, we

might suggest a "Refer a Friend" button somewhere on the site that would allow

current parents to send out an invite to their family and friends in surrounding locations

such as Leonardtown, Lexington Park, Hollywood, Mechancisville, Lusby, etc.

7. Examples.

If you have any websites that you have been scoping out, and found you like the way they

look, we'd like to know. It gives us an idea of what you are drawn to. Looking at other

websites are a great way to get ideas, it's also a good way of pointing out what you don't

want or like as well. A good web designer or web developer will know what you are drawn

to and what you're not when you provide example.

7. Competitors.

Just like example websites, knowing your competitors will give you a step up of sort of

"what to do" and "What not to do", if you will. You'll be able to see on the consumer side

what stands out on these sites, what you don't like, what doesn't work, etc. and then use

this information to build a better site for your own company. For example, if Little Flowers

Day Care, who is a competitor, doesn't have a monthly calendar posted...you might ask

yourself "How will I know when they are closed for the holidays?" etc.

8. How tech friendly are you.

Our clients are first overwhelmed with the idea of not knowing how to use technology

extensively. If you're not a computer person, or web person, that's ok. We make websites so

that you don't have to worry about maintaining them. However, depending on how tech-

savy you are, we can show you tools you can utilize everyday. For example, we can create

your website into it's own app in the app store.

9. How often you're online.

Knowing how often you're online will help us in creating the perfect custom web design for

you and you're company. Most companies want to get found on search engines, have

customers find them before their competitors, and gain more clients. To do this, the website

needs to be maintained regularly. If our clients do not have time to do things like post on

blogs regularly, we can certainly help with doing so.

10. Utilizing your site.

Once you know how you plan on utilizing your site, we can begin the design

process. A local daycare company in California or Leonardtown will use their site much

differently than a company who is nationwide.

We understand business owners may not know what they want right away or have answers for all of these topics. That's ok. We know what to ask to help paint a picture for you. Our goal is to make our clients comfortable in the decision making process and happy with our finished web design product.

You can count on SOMD Connect & Associates!



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