Need a website?

Pictured: The storied Zingermans’s Delicatessen in Ann Arbor, Michigan, offers over 200 different cheeses. They have a website.

Do I need a website? Can I build a website myself? How can I hire someone to build me a website?

Do I need a website?
If you are asking this question, the answer is YES you need a website!
Everyone else that does what you do ALREADY has a website. If you don’t, you’re at a disadvantage. One main reason you need a website is to legitimize that you are indeed a professional. A website can reassure your potential clients that you are worthy of their business. Think of your website as an essential piece of your marketing efforts, an online brochure. You can advertise the products and services you offer. Make sure to include your contact information. The Main components of a basic website should include: your company name, an explanation of what you do, or what products you have for sale, your contact information, your turn-around time, the area that you serve, and most importantly what makes you unique!

You need to have an answer for the question: Why would someone want to do business with you?

Your website is the place for you to tell your story. You will need ORIGINAL text and images. Some Web Designers may help you write your story. Some Web Designers may even be able to take original pictures for you, or help you find stock images for your site. A website is only as good as its content (the words and pictures.)

Can I build a website myself?
There are plenty of ways for a non-tech person to build their own website. You are going to need to find a Web Hosting Company. Here is a short list of just a few: GoDaddy, Bluehost, A2 Hosting (MANY others are available.) Call a web host and ask them their rates. Web hosting rates vary widely. Generally speaking, you will need to spend at a minimum $12 a month for hosting and about $12 a year for the name.

The name is the www.youruniquenamehere.com . This is also called a Uniform Resource Locator, a URL. A host can help you secure your name, host you, and maybe even steer you towards a non-technical way to build your own website yourself.

How can I hire someone to build me a website?

If learning how to build your own website is not in the cards, you will want to hire a Website Designer. Fortunately there are plenty of Web Designers that will be happy to build your website.

If you are on social media, shout out. Chances are you already know someone who is a web designer. If you do not know a web designer, you might want to google “web design” + “your hometown.” You may not need to meet your Web Designer face to face, but it sure can be helpful.
Before you hire someone, make sure to ask to see some of their “sample websites” that they have built. Your website is going to look like their samples. If they don’t have samples, ask why. Maybe this is their first site that they are going to build.

Make sure to negotiate the price, and get the details and agree on the terms of the contract before any work is done. Most Web Designers will require half payment up front, and the rest due when you approve the website, and it goes live. Make sure you know what will happen after the site goes live. Will the Web Designer do changes/updates for  a reasonable rate? Will they give you the files and or the password if you decide to continue with a different Web Designer?

Good Luck!

If you have any questions about what to look for in a Web Designer, or a Web Hosting solution email me at dave@rottervision.com .