It goes without saying that as a start-up, you must have a public website – no matter what! Websites are the first touchpoint most prospects have with your B2B, and are also extremely effective lead generating sources. We have a number of great blogs about how to revamp an existing site, but if you’re starting fresh and aren’t quite sure where to turn, let this be your guide!
These are the first steps you need to take to create your B2B website!
Buy Your Domain
This may or may not be obvious to you, but buying a domain that is explicitly your business name is integral. It will help with your SEO efforts, and people will be able to find you more quickly. If you haven’t nailed down your business name, you can still go ahead and begin designing your website, but I recommend you do not make it publicly accessible until it is able to go live on a purchased domain.
Browse Competitor Websites
Looking at your competitors and what they’re doing online is a great place to start researching what you might want on your own website. Take note of the sections they have in their menu, what kind of language they’re using to describe their business, and what you like or would do differently.
If there are commonalities between your competitors’ sites, consider looking into adding that to your website plan – or even better, find a more unique solution if you can!
Choose Your CMS Platform
Your CMS (or content management system) should be user friendly: anyone on your team may need to know the backend basics to make updates to the website. Some examples include Wix and Squarespace, but we always recommend WordPress to our clients.
WordPress is one of the top website platforms, and is very quick to learn. You are able to easily manage user access, download plugins to improve the performance of your site, and it integrates with almost every third-party website you may be using.
Select Your Theme
Browsing through themes can be fun, but overwhelming. There are virtually thousands of themes available that you can load right to your WordPress site; all with very similar bells and whistles. To help you narrow it down, here are a few things to watch out for:
- Start in Theme Forest. This is our favourite theme library to browse because it separates themes into sector-specific buckets.
- Make sure the theme has a high rating. There are so many themes out there, so you might as well choose the best of the best.
- Check when it was last updated. Themes can be developed by anyone, so it is essential you find one that is being frequently updated by a good team of developers.
- Browse the user reviews. Is the developer responding and answering questions? Are people generally happy with their purchase?
Organize Your Website Structure
Larger corporations will conduct usability testing to see how a site design resonates with their customers, but this can be time consuming and expensive. A good rule of thumb is start with only the essential pages and add as you talk with more prospects and position yourself in the market.
There are a few basic things you will for sure want to include on your first site iteration:
- A services page that outlines your offerings and anything unique about them
- A contact page with a form that allows people to request you to contact them
- A blog or updates page. The word ‘blog’ may seem daunting, but including a simple blog page has a proven track record of benefiting B2B companies. Write a new blog whenever something new or exciting happens to your business so that you can share the news more easily across your other marketing channels
Conduct Keyword Research
This is a whole other major topic entirely that requires constant attention, but the main goal for this step is to find the language that your future customers are using to search for a service that you can provide. Knowing these keywords and phrases will inform the content you write and improve your chances of being discovered by your customers through search engines. Here’s how to do it properly.
Still need help with your B2B marketing strategy? Contact us with any of your questions, or follow us on Twitter to be notified when we release a new blog.