What do I need to build a website? (10 things to speed up the process)

Here’s what you’ll need to have on hand for a speedy website project completion. We know you’re a busy and like efficiency, so we’re breaking it down for you. By making sure you’re ready to provide this information to your website developer, your project will go 90% faster. I made that statistic up, but I stand behind it!

Minimum requirements to start a website project

Bonus points for having these ready:

1. Your Ideal Customer

It’s the description of the person who would benefit most from your products and services. It’s also the description of the person who is finding immense value in your offerings right now! At Center Street Digital we guide you through a series of questions to refine this and get crystal clear. Either way, the more clear you can get, with the persona you are targeting, the easier your project will be.

2. Business Goals

What are your overall business goals? What role does your website have in moving the needle on those goals? Is it developing new business leads?Growing an email list? Becoming and info repository? Managing event attendees?

Getting clear on what your business growth step is will help you define your websites primary job. Once your goals are clear, your website developer can build your site to strategical move you toward success.

3. Domain Name Registration

You need to have access to the login information for the service where your domain name has been registered. The sooner you can track this down the better. When it comes time to launch your site your website developers will need access to the Nameservers and DNS records that are available in your domain registrations. Without this your project cannot move forward

4. Hosting Service

You’ll need a place to put your website files! If you plan on hosting yourself, you’ll need to provide an account at a reputable hosting service. For small businesses we recommend staying away from shared hosting and using a VPS server or a managed WordPress service. Good hosting has so much influence over your website experience, from support to website speed. It makes a difference! Center Street Digital is proud to offer hosting including in our Website Care Plans.

5. Contact Information

Having an accurate Name, Address, Phone (NAP) is critical for establishing credibility and allowing people to contact you easily. Make sure you’re clear on the exact way you want your business represented across the internet. Bonus points for using a business email associated with your domain name.

First impressions are important. A professional business logo helps establish your brand and make your company memorable. Make sure it’s high resolution, transparent background and has multiple versions for displaying on both a light and dark background. Bonus point for having a logo that works in landscape orientation as most sites are built for logos that are wider than they are tall.

7. Description of your services

Your homepage and services page will need some text! These areas should be focused on the customer’s pain point and align with their search intent. Make sure you describe clearly and succinctly what you offer and the difference it can make in their lives as well as what the process of doing business with you will look like.

The goal is to communicate what you do for them and the benefits they’ll experience when doing business with you. They are the hero of the story and you’re the guide.

Make sure text is scannable with well placed titles and chunks of text and of course a clear and relevant call to action prominently displayed.

8. About Page Text

The about page brings a personal element to your website and is often the second most visited page on a website. The trick is to make the text more about your website browsers than a list of accomplishments.

An “About” page is like a written conversation that answers the who, what, when, where, and why questions for your visitors. Oddly enough, it also improves your search engine visibility and rankings. Building a great “About Us” section starts with telling the story of your business, being genuine in your communication, and filling your page with optimized content.

9. Brand Guidelines

Having brand guidelines are not required to launch a website but incredibly helpful to move your project forward. Brand guidelines help define the standards of how your brand should be communicated to the world. Guidelines often include fonts choices, color schemes, design frameworks and tone of voice, all of which is helpful for website developers to deliver a project you love.

10. Beautiful Images

Great website images do several important things for your business: They instantly tell customers why you are passionate about what you do, they drive new visitors to your site, they encourage sharing on social media, and they help establish a trusting relationship between you and your customers. The best website typically have high quality, relevant imagery throughout the site.

If you’re a busy small business owner looking for a trusted guide for website development feel free to reach out to Center Street Digital today. We’ve build hundreds of websites and LOVE small businesses.