Where should you begin when building your business’ website? The wireframe
You have a business, a start-up, resort, side hustle or idea you want to get started with. You know in 2019 having a website that works for your business is a MUST. But where do you begin to design or redesign your website?
Many people start by downloading a WordPress theme, hosting and URL. Or maybe hiring a website designer or developer to give them hand.
But this can be a costly mistake that you need to avoid.
Because you need to create a strategy and a clear message before you can move forward with a design.
So where should you start building your website?
You start with your goals and users
Since starting with the development of your website can cost you money, you should start with the goals you want this website to accomplish.
Can you imagine building a website that has no intended purposes, goals, and features to help visitors accomplish their goals? Can you imagine how much this will cost and how many more times you will have to redesign this website?
Identify your goals in terms of:
EfficiencyThis will give you a clear definition of where you need to go.
Now you need to know your users. This is by far the most important task before you begin to design your website. If you know who you are talking to, you will be able to comfortably craft your message and designs.
This will also help you to find features that your visitors will use and are in line with the goals you previously created.
Layout a map of the pages you need
It is important to create a road map for your users. Sort of like a guide that ensures they are traveling in the right direction (Buying your product or services) all the time.
One of the biggest mistakes is to start from the first interaction with your customers. You see, if you do this you may miss a few opportunities. So this is how you can get it right.
On a whiteboard or paper write your users on the left side and next to it, write down where they might find you. Then on the far right side, write down the last thing they will do when they purchase your products and services.
Now that you have this, start connecting the steps all the way from the last interaction they have with you to the users. Step into their shoes and imagine each interaction they are having, each page they have to use and each step they have to do to arrive at the final destination.
Build and create your content strategy
Many website design projects look amazing and then the real content is given to the designer, and the look and feel of the entire website changes. This will be frustrating for the designer and for you who had already agreed to the design.
So before you do any design or wireframes, let’s build your content.
Your goal here will be to make content for each section below. But you want to make sure your content is as brief as possible to create a powerful impact.
In many of my other blogs about SEO, I wrote about having a lot of content on your pages. But we want to leave that for your blog and other internal pages where your clients do not have to make a buying decision.
Build a wireframe
I recommend everyone to do a wireframe, even if it is just on a piece of paper before you start to design your website. This should be part of your web designer’s process.
A wireframe is the simple blueprint and structure of your website. This will show you the basic structure and flow of your website in black and white. No images or colors, just plain content to help you visualize the website.
Layout the main sections you need on each page
You have your goals, user personas, a full road map of the steps they have to take.Now you have to think about the different sections your web pages need. Let’s say you are redesigning or designing your home page, here are some of the sections you should consider:
Above the fold area: The area that someone sees as soon as they get into your website before scrolling down
The problems your customers are going through
What makes you an authority to help them
Previous analytics or results
How to get startedThis, of course, will be different for different types of industries. So let’s say you have a resort or a private villa, your layout will look somewhat like this:
Above the fold – With a catchy intro about your resort
The pain points your property solve, but in a positive way
Large image of the property (lifestyle photos will rock this section)
Reasons for staying at your property and top amenities that back these reasons
Testimonials of previous guests
Call to action to the next step – In the hospitality field is very important to guide them to the next step which can be something like ‘View rooms.’ ‘Explore the villas.’ ‘Plan your trip.’
Get some inspiration
Many of my clients love it when I tell them to do a ‘Love-it or Hate-it’ list. The reason for this is that it allows them to review other websites that they find easy to understand and feel connected to, as well as, websites that they have no idea on what they are selling.
Use these websites to inspire the design. Make notes of what you find is nice and what about you really like. For example: “I love the way their video loads seamlessly on the header.” or “I love the way they showcase their products and services.”
Create a folder name and name it “Mood-board.” You can use this folder to save an image of the websites you have liked.
The process of creating a website or redesigning your current website can be overwhelming and scary at times. With this guide and the next few, I will be developing some creativity and a great understanding of your customers; you will be on your way to a fantastic website.
From there you will be able to work on your digital marketing strategies. But it is important to do some strategic thinking and content development. On my next blog post, I will talk about what needs to be done after the inspiration for the design is found. So keep a lookout for my posts, or sign up for my newsletter to the right side of this post to get the next blog post on your inbox!