What you need to know

Before You Hire A Web Designer To Build Your Website 

1. Where’s your domain– Your web designer will be asking you for a lot of information. One of the things they will need is access to your domain registrar. The registrar is where you purchased the domain from or registered it at. Registrars include GoDaddy, Google Domains, Net Solutions. 

2. Your brand assets– Create a folder in the cloud on a gmail account or drop box to hold alll your brand assets. This could be images of customers, your office, you in action that you’ve aquired over time. It also would include a high resolution logo, any special fonts your use and your brand hex numbers. Chose your logo color here or ask your logo designer for them.

2. Digital Accounts– Gather up all the username and passwords to your digital accounts. Email, your current website admin if you have one, email marketing software. You’ll need them to integrate into your website. 

3. Keywords or Phrases– Make a list of words and phrases that describe your product/services and/or are relevant to your business. List as many as you can and do some research by searching those terms on Google to see what comes up. Keep the list in excell sheet or word doc or google document to give to your designer. 

4. Voice– Start thinking about your brand “voice.”  You’ll be coming up with new content for your website and you’ll want to establish your ‘voice’.   Here are some examples:

“Hey Friends!”  Casual, fun

“Our strategic approach..”  Formal, conservative

“Check out our groooovy work…”  Casual, quirky, fun

Once you establish this and implement it into your new site, be consistant with it across all your digital assets.

5. Services – It’s time to get to the details and descriptions of the services you offer. Write new descriptions using the brand voice you decided on and incorporate those keywords/phrases. Be creative with your adjectives and use termonology that your prospect understands. Stay away from your industry jargon. 

6.  Products– Create a folder in the cloud to host your product images. Write detailed descriptions for your products and again follow the guidelines in #3. Use your brand voice and keywords/phrases. You can also include sizes, weight and any other spec information such as speed. 

7. Decide What You Want Your Site To Do– Think about ways that you can offload your offline processes to your website. Can you include an intake form, will you want to add online payments or bookings? Do you want visitors to be able to opt in to a newsletter or online group? Write a list of ‘must haves” and “nice to haves.”

8. Headlines/Categories– The most important part of any website page is the headline. Put some time into this task. Write a headline for every page, be creative and concise. You’ll also want to write up a list of categories for blogs, projects, products. Write this list prior to getting started so you can place things in the proper category for your web designer. 

9. Hosting Budget– The single most important decision and spend of your money will be on your hosting. If you cheap out on this, everything you do moving forward will be in vain. Try to stay away from shared hosting and if you have an e-commerce site, buy hosting for e-commerce. Remember, just a second delay in your website loading time can cost you prospects and money. Page speed is also a ranking factor for Google. Make sure you get this part right. 

10. Content is still KING/QUEEN!– Take the time to write new and fresh content for every page (unless you are paying someone to do it for you).  The quality and quantity of content on your pages will be a determining factor of the amount of traffic you get and if your prospect stays on your site. Sit in your customer’s seat for this excersise. It’s so important you capture their attention by focusing on how you solve their problems or fill their needs. Your website should follow the 80/20 rull. 80% about them, 20% about you. If you have an old website that didn’t bring leads in, all the more reason you should rewrite your copy.

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