How to make a business website: A step-by-step guide 

11 MINS
Harlan Dave Tantog

Having a strong online presence is a must-have for any business nowadays. Whether you’re running a local service company, starting a consulting business, or selling things online, your website is your 24/7 store on the internet – it should work well and must be visually appealing. 

For small businesses, we understand that money can be tight, and hiring professional web designers is a challenge. But here’s the good news: there are website builders that don’t require technical know-how and are affordable. Some even come with pre-made designs, simple drag-and-drop tools, and easy setups and integrations. 

In this article, we’ll assist you in creating your small business website. We’ll break it down for you so you can kickstart your online journey right away! 

Related: Browse our small business website templates

Step-by-step guide to creating a business website

Step 1. Decide the purpose of your website 

Figuring out what your website should do is like charting your online course. It’s not just about having a web presence; it’s about making it work for your business. 

A clear website purpose guides how it looks, what’s on it, and how it functions. Whether it’s about getting leads, selling stuff, or providing info, nailing down this purpose helps you build an effective online place. 

Furthermore, your website’s job should connect smoothly with your business’s big goals. If your business aims to boost online sales, your website’s role should be all about selling. This connection ensures everything online pushes your business toward success. 

To pin down a specific and measurable purpose for your website, start by asking yourself what you want visitors to do. Is it to buy, sign up, or contact you? Once you’ve got that sorted, set clear goals like “increase sign-ups by 20% in six months.” This way, your website becomes a potent tool for achieving your business dreams in the online world. 

Step 2. Buy a domain name and web hosting

Choosing the right domain name that fits your brand is a bit like picking a sign for your shop that matches its style. It’s your online address where people find you, so it’s got to match your brand. A well-picked domain name builds trust, makes you more recognizable, and ensures people remember your website. 

Now, when it comes to hosting, two things are key: reliability and room to grow. Think of it as a store that should never close unexpectedly and can handle more shoppers when you have a big sale. Web.com, has you covered here. Find a domain name with the help of our AI Domain Generator and create domain names that align perfectly with your brand. Along with a solid web hosting service guarantees your website is always there for your visitors, no matter how popular your online shop becomes. It’s like having a reliable, ever-expanding store in the digital world. 

Step 3. Design and customize your website

Responsive design is essential to accommodate different customer preferences. With almost half of web traffic coming from mobile devices, a website that works well on both mobiles and computers is non-debatable. This way, everyone gets a smooth experience, regardless of the device they use. 

Now, when picking your website themes or templates, it should be something that goes well with your brand. If you’re into vintage fashion, go for a theme that gives that old-school vibe. If you’re running a tech blog, something modern and sleek is a good fit. With Web.com’s website builder and templates, you’ve got lots of options to explore. We make it easy to create a website that not only looks cool but also speaks directly to your audience.

Step 4. Plan your site map

Picture your website as a bustling city with streets and buildings. Now, think of a site map as a map for this digital city. It’s like that directory you see at a shopping mall, it makes it easy for people to find what they’re looking for. 

When you’re setting up your site, it’s important to have a logical structure that matches your goals. Consider what you want visitors to do – whether it’s buying products, contacting you, or something else. Make sure your site’s layout aligns with these goals. 

Furthermore, user-friendly navigation is like the golden rule. If your website is confusing to get around, it pushes people to leave out of frustration. So, organize your website with clear menus and labels. Ensure that your visitors can find information, products, or services without any hassle. It’s all about making their journey enjoyable and hassle-free. 

Step 5. Create high-quality content 

Compelling and relevant content acts as a magnet that draws in visitors and keeps them interested in your website. It’s what turns your website from a dull signboard into an engaging place. So, how can you make your content stand out? 

Start by showcasing what makes your products or services better than the competition. Find your unique strengths and let them shine. Take a peek at your competitors’ websites to get ideas on creating content but aim for a unique angle that sets you apart. 

Mix up your content with clear and informative product descriptions and helpful blog posts, and engage in multimedia-like videos or eye-catching infographics. Don’t forget about SEO tricks to help people find your content in online searches. Keep your tone consistent to reflect your brand’s personality. 

Additionally, user-generated content (UGC) is a secret weapon. Share pictures of your team at work, display happy customers, and capture moments of both employees and customers with smiles. Showcasing staff gatherings can also add a personal touch and make your company stand out. All these elements bring authenticity and relatability to your content. 

Step 6. Publish your website 

Before publishing your website, make sure it’s in tip-top shape. The last thing you want is for it to be faulty. So, here’s a checklist for you: 

  • No broken links: Check your website thoroughly to ensure all links are working correctly. Broken links can be frustrating for visitors and bad for your search engine ranking.  
  • Mobile-friendly: Test your site on various mobile devices to ensure it looks and functions well. Many people surf the web on their phones, so this is vital. 
  • Works on different browsers: Make sure your website behaves consistently on various web browsers like Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and edge. 
  • Speedy loading: Optimize your site’s loading speed. Slow websites can drive visitors away. 
  • Security: Ensure that your website has solid security measures to protect your data and your visitors’ information. 
  • Content review: Double-check all your content for accuracy, relevance, and proper formatting. 
  • Contact forms: Test all contact forms to make sure they’re working as they should. 

Now, let’s get real. Publishing your website is not the end of it. It’s equally important to spread the word about your website being online: 

  • Social media: Share your website on your social media profiles to reach your existing followers. Create engaging posts with eye-catching visuals. 
  • Email newsletters: Send out newsletters to your email subscribers, introducing your website and its benefits. 
  • Search engine optimization (SEO): Optimize your website’s content and structure for search engines. Use relevant keywords and meta tags to improve your search engine ranking. 
  • Content marketing: Produce valuable blog posts, videos, or infographics related to your niche. Share these on your website and social media to establish authority in your field. 
  • Pay-per-click (PPC) advertising: Consider using paid ads on platforms like Google ads or social media to drive targeted traffic to your site. 
  • Collaborate: Partner with influencers or businesses that complement yours to expand your reach. 

Ensure your website is in great shape but also have a plan to get the word out and attract visitors effectively.

6 tips to ensure your website is high quality

Use a clean and visually appealing design  

Your website’s design is the storefront of your online business. It’s the first thing people see, so it needs to look inviting. How? Below are key factors to remember:  

  • Clean and good-looking design: Keep your store neat and attractive with a clean but visually appealing design. A clutter-free and attractive design is the key. It should reflect your brand’s style and create a welcoming atmosphere. 
  • Fonts that are easy to read: Your website fonts lead the customers to what they’re after, just like store signs. They should be clear and easy to read. Fancy fonts might look nice but can confuse your visitors. 
  • Colors that stand out: Use colors that make your content pop. Choose the right colors for your shop’s exterior. Contrasting colors can make your website more inviting and user-friendly. 

 A well-designed site attracts them and encourages them to explore further. It’s like having an appealing storefront that entices people to step inside and discover what your business has to offer.

Optimize page loading speed to minimize bounce rates

Think of your website’s loading speed as the time it takes for customers to enter your store. If it’s too slow, they might get frustrated and leave. 

Make sure your website loads quickly. This means fixing heavy images, removing unnecessary stuff, and investing in speedy hosting. Slow websites can annoy visitors and make them bounce away. 

A fast-loading website not only improves user experience but also increases the chances of visitors sticking around to explore your content or products. It’s like having a store with a wide-open door, inviting people in without making them wait. 

Security must always be a top priority

Ensuring your website’s security is much like locking the doors of your physical store – it’s a fundamental trust-building measure. 

Make certain your website employs HTTPS and SSL certificates. Think of it as having a high-tech security system guarding your online shop. It shields sensitive data through encryption, thwarting hackers from gaining access. 

Additionally, exploring our web security products is a wise move. They function as a diligent security team, shielding your website from various online threats. 

When your website is secure, it not only safeguards your data but also nurtures customer trust. It’s akin to assuring them, “Your information is in safe hands.” This assurance encourages repeat visits to your online store, fostering a loyal customer base. 

Conduct routine website maintenance

Regular website maintenance is a bit like tidying up your physical store to keep it inviting. Aside from that, you also get to check the following:  

  • Broken links are like blocked paths in your store. They frustrate visitors and harm your website’s credibility. Regular checks ensure all pathways are clear and working. 
  • Just as you’d dust off shelves and restock products, keeping your website’s content up to date is essential. Remove or refresh content that’s no longer relevant. This keeps visitors interested and helps with SEO. 
  • Technical issues are like hidden problems in your store’s infrastructure. They can disrupt the user’s experience. Regular maintenance spots and fixes these issues promptly, ensuring your website runs smoothly. 

Making routine maintenance a part of your website management ensures your digital store is always in great shape. It’s a proactive way to provide a positive online experience and maintain a strong digital presence. 

Content details must always be accurate

Keeping your website up to date is similar to regularly restocking and rearranging your store’s shelves. It’s crucial for several reasons: 

  • Accuracy: Just as you’d want your in-store signs to reflect the latest deals, your website should showcase current information, such as services and pricing. Outdated details can confuse potential customers. 
  • Engagement: Fresh content and images are like new arrivals in your store – they catch people’s attention. Regular updates signal to visitors that your business is active and dedicated to providing up-to-date information. 
  • SEO benefits: Search engines favor websites with regularly updated content. This can improve your site’s visibility and make it easier for potential customers to find you online. 

By consistently refreshing your website with accurate content, images, services, and pricing, you maintain a lively and reliable online presence. It’s like always keeping your store well-organized and appealing to offer the best experience to your customers, whether they visit in person or online. 

Regularly back up website data and files

Creating backups is like setting up a safety net for your digital store. It’s a wise way to ensure your online presence remains secure and strong. 

Website backups are your shield against unexpected disasters. They guarantee that if something goes wrong, like a server crash or a cyberattack, you won’t lose your precious data, content, or hard work. Just as insurance helps you recover after a setback, having backups means you can swiftly bring your website back to life. This reduces downtime and keeps your digital shop open for business as soon as possible. 

Knowing that your website’s data is securely backed up gives you peace of mind in uncertain times. It’s a proactive way to protect your online business. 

Set the stage for success with a business website

In a nutshell, your business website’s success hinges on these vital aspects: 

  • Design impact: Your website’s appearance is like a virtual storefront. It should be visually appealing and easy to navigate. 
  • Website speed: A quick-loading website is essential. Slow pages can drive visitors away. 
  • Security: Protect your site with HTTPS and SSL certificates, much like ensuring your customers’ safety in a physical store. 
  • Maintenance: Regularly check for issues, like broken links, outdated content, and technical glitches. 
  • Fresh content: Keep everything up to date, from content to pricing, like refreshing your store’s inventory. 
  • Backup strategy: Back up your data to prepare for unexpected events. 

Ultimately, Web.com is here to help you build a well-designed website that sets the stage for success in the online business world.

  • Harlan Dave Tantog

    As a Technical Writer at Web.com, Harlan creates content that any reader can understand. With his background in technical and customer support, he incorporates his technical knowledge and deconstructs complex ideas and concepts into easy to digest texts. Outside work, you'll see him playing volleyball, jumping off cliffs, and drinking coffee at cafes.

Trending Topics