Putting a site up on the Internet can be a very easy thing to do and you can do it unbelievably cheaply. Most major web hosts have very simple do-it-yourself packages and during the early days of the Internet, those designs were acceptable.
But users have become more sophisticated and as is the case with all marketing material, a poorly designed site will reflect badly on you and your business.
If you are thinking about a creating a web presence, I recommend that you have clear answers to these questions before you go forward. Whoever you decide to hire to design your site will appreciate the groundwork you have established.
Why Do I Want a Web Site?
There’s no wrong answer to this question. Even “everybody’s doing it” is quite acceptable. But you should think of your prospective web site as another tool and
What Do I Want This Site to Achieve?
- Are you selling a product or service and want to promote it?
- Is the website a communicate tool?
- Do you want to increase membership in your organization?
- Are you looking to provide a venue for people to communicate with one another?
How “Hands-On” Do I Want to Be During the Site Design? The On-Going Maintenance?
Whether you decide you have the skills to create a website, have someone in your office who can do the work, or hire an outside designer, you will still be responsible for:
- providing the collateral and copy material
- assisting the development of the web outline
- providing input and approval to the overall web design and layout
- and, of course, financing the design and the on-going maintenance costs
Once you are clear about your website’s purpose and have started organizing material to put on the web, it will become much easier to begin building the web structure, the foundation of your design. It will save you — or the designer you hire to put together your — hours of time and plenty of $$$.