If you have started a business or have an old website that you built by yourself to get something that would represent your company online, you may be unfamiliar with what goes into professional website building, front to back. It's more complicated than it looks, especially if you want to capture all the traffic possible and convert a significant percentage of that traffic into sales.What Goes into Website Building?
Many things in life seem familiar and easily understood, but once you open the hood it is an entirely different situation. Let's use a car as an example. Driving and operating a car is familiar to anyone who drives. It seems simple, right? You put gas in, turn the key, and go. However, only a fraction of drivers understand how an engine operates or could build that car themselves or even do regular maintenance on their own. Similarly, many people surf the web spending hours of their day online and on various websites. That said, it would be a safe bet that the majority of internet surfers could not build the websites that they frequent. So what are the main elements of building a website?
First, the website needs to be hosted. Then the platform needs to be chosen. Next, the design is created, and finally the site it built out to the design specs and content that has been prepared for the pages.Hosting
Why does a website need to be hosted? You cannot build a house without purchasing a lot to put it on. A website is similar in this way. Your hosting server is where your website exists like your house is located on a lot within your neighborhood.Website Platform
A website can still be coded manually like was more common in years past. However, more recently content management systems (CMS) are the more popular way of organizing all of the content on your website and making sure it is accessible to your audience in the way you want it presented. One of the most commonly used content management systems is WordPress. Selecting the correct platform for your website is critical for your company's success.Design
No one wants a website that is hard to navigate or is sloppily put together. Moreover, websites are viewed on all different size screens and via a variety of web browsers. All of this has to be taken into consideration when designing a website. In other words, it isn't enough to have a pretty looking site, it must display correctly to your entire audience, no matter how they are accessing it.Website Build Out
Once you have made decisions on all of the above and you have all of your content to add to the website, it is time to build it out. This means configuring any software, third party add-ons, and plugins that will help make the website run properly. Among other things, it is important that the website is setup correctly so search engines are able to crawl the website, so it loads quickly, and so notifications are put in place in case a form is not working or the website does not update properly.
This is a very abbreviated summary of the steps and actions necessary for website building, but we have written other articles that expand on several of these steps. Look for more to come, including what to expect once the site is launched, maintaining a website, and also marketing it to increase its reach and effect. A website is a working resource, so it should never be left static.