August 30, 2016
Ready to open? No website yet? Use social media instead.
By Maureen McCabe
The explosion of online business can leave potential start-ups wondering if they have the technical savvy to compete in a world where not having a website and online presence is the oddity, not the norm. Creating a website is usually the first step taken to establish your company online, but it is not always necessary to have a finished website and robust online network on launch day.
Avoiding the Hazards of a Poor Website
In a rush to have an online presence, companies can opt for poor implementations of features that they expect to have in the final product. Those who do business online are used to finding websites lacking functionalities, but websites that promise more than they deliver or lack a professional quality can immediately turn them away from your company. You may also miss out on security requirements that keep your information, that of your clients and associates safe from the hands of malicious cyber attacks.
Instead of leaping before you look, you can work on the absolute basics of your company website. First, you’ll need to investigate hosting options and decide on a domain name (URL) to identify your brand. The URL can become more widely used than the name of the company, so try to select one you would be content with representing your business.
Beyond that, the only steps you should take for your website are creating a simple landing page (a page that offers information about your services and encourages visitors to contact you via a form) with basic contact and company information alongside a disclaimer that the website is a work in progress. You might also opt to create an “under construction” graphic for your website that includes your contact information to let visitors know that more content will be coming soon. You won’t be the only company with a fledgling website, and providing an alternative way for customers to contact your office will prevent loss of revenue.
Establishing a basic landing page or “under construction” page on your domain shouldn’t take more than a day or so, and it will serve during the start-up period where you are still deciding on aspects like the company logo and website layout.
In the Meantime: Temporary Options for Your Primary Online Presence
If your business is focused on the real world, the early days of your company’s life on the Internet are more about marketing and advertising than they are about functionality. You can get a significant portion of your online connections in place by creating profiles on the major social media websites. Just remember to connect all of your online profiles back to your temporary website or under construction page in the contact information!
Facebook, Google Plus (G+) and Twitter provide a way to communicate quickly with customers and inform them about your business’s plan, product and additional information. LinkedIn is another important social network with a focus on business connections; use it to scout for new talent or join with like-minded companies throughout the world.
Beyond those, try to create accounts on social networks that have a connection with your business type. For example, a local landscaping company could have a profile on a public lawn care forum for their city where they offer helpful advice – and a link back to the company’s landing page in their contact information.
Planning for Your Website
With your online start-up presence in place, you can free up the time and energy to plan a proper company website. If you are unsure of how to best use the digital world to advertise your business and enable it to reach the far corners of the world, then you should look to enlist the help of an experienced marketing professional that has experience with creating websites that make a real impact!
Learn how to improve your website’s ranking, check out these posts.
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