Starting a website for the first time can be scary, and the thought of all that goes into ensuring your website is running smoothly can be overwhelming. However, if you know the right steps to take, starting and maintaining your website doesn’t have to be difficult.
For your benefit, I’ve compiled a list of the six most helpful tips to ensure your website looks good, loads fast and draws traffic.
1. Find the Right Hosting Provider
Having the wrong hosting can lead to a slew of problems, including slow load times, poor security and a lack of customer service.
Due to this, it’s important to have the right hosting provider to ensure your website is well equipped with everything you need to be successful.
So what does good hosting look like? Here are four key questions to ask when making your decision:
- Does the hosting provide a free domain?
- Does the hosting allow for fast load times?
- How much web space does the hosting provider allow for? (Very important for larger sites)
- How is the customer support?
While many believe web hosting is for WordPress users only, and it is certainly important to have the best wordpress hosting possible, it can also be beneficial to choose your own hosting even if your website platform provides its own hosting.
2. Choose the Right Theme
While many hosting providers have their own templates for you to choose from, it is usually a good idea to pick your own theme that fits your exact needs.
Now, what considerations go into making the right theme decision?
The first question you should ask yourself is does the theme look professional? If you’re like me, then at some point you have probably came across a website, which may have even had amazing content, but quickly left that website due to its poor design and unprofessional appearance.
So, just like in life, a good first impressions can go a long way.
Similar to choosing a hosting provider, it’s also important to consider the responsiveness and support of a theme. Not all themes are created equal, and some themes will be faster than others and have better support.
3. Use Original Images and Avoid Stock Images
The excessive use of stock images on your website can be very unappealing to a new visitor and can come across as being inauthentic. You can try and disguise the stock images as yours, but it will be blatantly obvious that they are not original.
Instead, take the time to actually upload some original images to your site.
If your website is a personal blog, upload some pictures of you in everyday life that portrays who you really are. If you have an eCommerce website, then be sure to have pictures on your website of your products being used. Although it is important to establish a professional look with your website, being authentic and original is even more important.
While stock or sourced images certainly have their place and can be helpful within the body of an article or on a landing page with longer content, they should not be displayed on your home page, about page or any other key landing page.
4. Make Sure Your Website is Mobile Friendly
With nearly 60 percent of all online searches coming from mobile devices, it is crucial for your website to be mobile friendly. If not, then you are practically eliminating over half of your potential viewers.
So how do you go about making sure your website is mobile friendly?
You Might Also Enjoy: Effective Measures for Cell Phone Virus Removal
The best way to ensure mobile friendliness is to choose a theme that specifically advertises being mobile friendly. It can also be beneficial to ask the theme developer about the mobile usability of the theme and whether or not they will help with the mobile setup before purchasing.
You should also strive to avoid pop ups, redirects and large images with the mobile version of your website. Why, you ask? Clicking is usually more difficult when on a mobile device, and having to excessively click can cause the viewer to become frustrated.
In many cases, the simpler you can make the mobile version of your site the better.
5. Utilize SEO and Social Media to Drive Traffic
Regardless of whether you are selling a product or simply running a personal blog, it can be very difficult to get your content in front of its intended readers without proper marketing techniques.
The good news, however, is that it is completely free to market your website through SEO and social media.
SEO stands for search engine optimization and refers to how well your website ranks for its intended search terms in search engine sites such as Google and Bing. It may sound complicated, but it doesn’t have to be.
Here are a few techniques you can implement to help boost your ranking within search engines:
- Include your website’s keywords throughout your website and blog articles.
- Promote your content on social media
- Gain links from trusted websites
- Remove unnecessary web pages
As beneficial as SEO can be for a website, it can be equally beneficial to have a strong social media presence, which doesn’t require much skill as long as you are being yourself and relating to your followers.
6. Have a Newsletter in Place for Subscribers
It’s much easier to obtain a repeat website visitor than it is to attract a new website visitor.
Therefore, it is important to have a newsletter so your core audience can get email notifications of your latest updates, which may include a newly released blog post, a new product released on your site and/or subscriber discounts to your products(if you have an eCommerce website).
So how do you create an email newsletter?
There are many email marketing platforms available for free, such as Mailchimp or Zoho, that will allow you to set up your newsletter on your website.
The way it works is simple: once you connect your website with your email host, then all your subscribers will show up in one place, and you will be able to easily carry out email campaigns to all of your subscribers at any time.
Building a great website takes time and requires patience. While you may not see much traffic right away, if you constantly publish quality content, establish quality relationships with other top blogs or websites and be authentic, then you will eventually drive quality traffic to your site.
Was this article helpful and informative? Leave us a comment with your thoughts in the section below.