The creation of a new website is a challenge often facing entrepreneurs, start-ups and small businesses. With the countless options available and without the technical knowledge to know which is best the option for you, making this decision can often prove to be difficult.
Nowadays, you can be online and fully visible in 1-2 hours with your website being the first step towards telling the world who you are and what you're all about. We've created this ultimate guide to answer the question, "How to create a new website?"
Best of all, Ark Digital Agency offers everything you need to build the perfect website. You can always get in touch should you want more information.
We'll cover the following in this guide:
- Will I need technical skills?
- Determine the goals of your website
- Decide on your domain name
- Choose your website hosting
- Decide on how you'll build your website
- Test and go live
- Maintain your site
- So what’s next?
Will I need technical skills?
It depends on how hands-on you want to be. If you have the technical skills (if that was the case, you probably wouldn't be reading this), then you're good to go. If you don't, no problem because there are plenty of individuals and teams who are willing to help.
However, there are also options for those with no technical skills who want to have a go at building their own website. Wix is the most well-known option with a "drag and drop" approach but it has limited functionality. It's great for individuals with little to no budget or those who have the time to learn a new skill.
Determine the goals of your website
This may sound obvious but the creation of a new website begins with setting goals:
- Do you want to sell products and/or services?
- Are you providing general information about your company?
- Do you want to encourage individuals to visit your store?
- Do you want to build an email subscription list?
Regardless of whether you create a simple website that tells a little about your company or a more complex e-commerce site, the most important thing before your begin is to know what you want to get out of it.
"Think about your specific user experience, and the journey the user will go through as they navigate your site," added Gabriel Shaoolian, CEO of website design and digital marketing agency Blue Fountain Media. "Whatever the fundamental goal of your website is or whatever the focus may be, users should be easily able to achieve it, and the goal itself should be reinforced as users navigate throughout your site."
Knowing your website goals will determine your next steps.
Decide on your domain name
Your domain name is one of the most important features of your website. It's the URL you'll be sharing with your customers and promoting on social media. For example:
You want it to be descriptive, and easy to remember and type into a web browser. Try to keep it short, and steer clear of abbreviations and numbers so as to avoid customer confusion. If you are stuck, think about the name of the business or project you're starting and use that as inspiration.
You also need to decide on your top-level domain (TLD). This is the suffix at the end of your domain name, such as
Once you've selected your domain name, you'll need to confirm its availability. A great place to do this is via instantdomainsearch.com. This website separates them by industry and even provides location-based extensions.
Don't forget to check copyrights to make sure you're not infringing on anyone else's protected name. If your preferred URL is already taken, you can call the company and ask to buy it from them.
Our team is at hand to help you decide on your domain name and to also purchase it for you. We can help with this stage of the creation of a new website.
Choose your website hosting
The next step in the creation of a new website is to choose where your website is going to live. This is called website hosting, or web hosting. It's where your website content, emails and things of that nature are stored.
When choosing your host, take the following into consideration:
- Storage size - Depending on the nature of your website, you should consider how many files you would like people to view or download. For example, if you are a photographer and will be uploading your customer photos to the website, you are going to need a higher storage plan. Your storage plan will include everything from your own website files, emails and other data.
- Emails - There will be a set number of email accounts that you can create as part of your hosting plan. So for example, if you wanted email@example.com and firstname.lastname@example.org, you'd need a plan that included two email accounts. If you have a team, each of whom is going to be having their own email account (e.g. email@example.com), you should be looking for a host who can provide the right amount of email accounts that works for you.
Our website hosting plans are robustly built to support photographers, e-commerce website and those who only need a website for their CV.
Decide on how you'll build your website
Now that you have the domain name and the house your website will live in, the next step in the creation of a new website is to actually build it. We'll provide a number of options with varying technical skills necessary:
- Get someone else - There are freelance developers and digital agencies who offer this service; including ourselves. We provide affordable website creation packages as well as the option to build a completely bespoke website. The out-of-the-box packages are great for start-ups and entrepreneurs whilst the bespoke option is excellent for small businesses.
- Wix - For those with little to no technical experience, Wix offers the option for you to attempt to build your own website.
- CMS such as WordPress - A CMS (content management system) such as WordPress or Joomla offers a great starting point for those with some technical experience. Whilst there are ample themes and plugins available, be careful to choose the right ones as there are many poorly developed themes and plugins on the market that offer slow loading speeds and poorly established security protocols.
Test and go live
Before announcing that your site is live on the web, make sure it works on all major browsers such as Chrome, Firefox and Safari. Click through each page and feature on every browser to ensure images show up, links are correct and the format looks smooth. This will take some time, but the effort you put in now will save future complaints from visitors who can't access certain features.
Another important factor to incorporate into your website from the very beginning is an analytics tool. Once the website is live, you can monitor page performance and determine why a page is successful or unsuccessful based on your analytics. Whilst it may be difficult to use at the beginning, Google Analytics is a great tool.
And that’s it, congratulations - you have a website!
Maintain your site
We'll be honest, the creation of a new website is the easy part. Crazy, right?
Staying relevant is important so update your website frequently with blog posts on industry events, new products and offers.
You should also check at least once a month to ensure your software and all add-ons/plugins are up-to-date. If your software is not up to date, it's in danger of being hacked. If you don't have time to do this yourself, delegate the task to a trusted employee or hire a freelance website manager.
Starting a website for your business is a low-cost investment that will help you to both establish credibility and reach a wider customer base than you ever could through traditional marketing techniques. If you keep your website updated with fresh, current content and are quick to address technical issues, you'll never have to worry about "not existing" to your current and future customers.
Great news - we offer a number of packages to help ease to load of maintaining a website. These packages include:
- Free developer time to add new content, create a new page and do whatever you'd like within that time period
- Keep your software and add-ons up-to-date to reduce the risk of any security holes opening
- Track any spam comments and remove them
Reduce your workload and free up your time to focus on your business goals.
So what’s next?
Well, that's it for our ultimate guide, "How to create a new website?" Our team are available to support you and to grow your business sales by developing the website of your dreams.
Get in contact with our team should you have any further questions.