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What are the Steps?
What do I need to Consider?
It's just like painting a house . . . most of the work is in the preparation . . . at least for you as the customer. Think the "W" questions - who, what, when, where and why. Hopefully this information will help you gather your thoughts and materials. Your site will go together better and get posted sooner with advanced planning.
Because it’s totally cool and all your friends have one? Well . . . true, but there are other reasons.
Having a web presence says you are serious and professional about your business. Information can be communicated easily and, unlike print media, updated readily.
Maybe your family and friends are far-flung and you want a fun way to share those new baby pictures or that wedding photo album.
Whatever it is, the first step is to know why you want a web site and what you expect it to accomplish for you.
Discussions about layout, color schemes and styles should be near the top of any designer’s list. Most things are interrelated. For example, your target audience will help to dictate some things about design. If you are trying to reach a high-end computer-savvy market, you might need fancy, sophisticated effects to keep them interested. A more general audience may just be annoyed by graphic intensive, slow-loading pages on older computers with dial-up connections, or cool presentations that require additional software to see.
Generally, you want to try to design for maximum functionality, whatever the viewer’s software, computer type or internet connection. You may have specific ideas about what you want. Is your site wide or deep? What color scheme do you envision and what is the overall feel of the site you are going for? What are some sample sites with a design you particularly like?
If you have your own domain, your web address (or URL) will be similar to: www.your_name.com. For a business site it may be critical to have your own domain to enhance your professional image. See our information on our Domain Name page.
If your registrar needs to be transferred for an existing domain, we will need some additional information.
Who will look at your site? Your mother? Members of your club? Customers? What kind of computers and internet connections are they likely to have? How web savvy are they? What will your viewers expect from your site?
These are important questions and the answers may very well dictate the design of your site.
This is also called Web Hosting. Please refer to our page Web Hosting for more details.
The beauty of the web is its fluidity. You can (and generally should) update your site regularly - add coupons and specials, new services, update your inventory, change photos, etc.
Someone has to do this. Your designer, another provider or someone in your organization can do your maintenance. Most often, you will want your site to be professionally maintained so that you can focus on your business and your life.
View our Maintenance Plans for keeping your site up-to-date and current.
The best site doesn’t benefit anyone if no one looks at it. Search engine optimization (SEO) tools can be used with your site. These programs make recommendations and can submit your site to various search engines. You will also want to think about getting your web address out there on business cards, signs, flyers and print ads. Professional organizations also have referral sites that you can tap into.
Rockport Web Sites includes required SEO elements with all sites built.