Creating an information only site for a small business can be one of the most effective tools for gaining loyal customers. Providing a website with useful data may establish a rapport that is hard to replicate. You can easily get started using information as power inexpensively.
Information Only Website Tips
Determine the name of the domain (i.e., the part that comes after the www. in the website address) and check for availability with your chosen hosting company. Popular options include Go Daddy, Microsoft Office Live and Homestead. These offer affordable yet quality website designs with hosting.
Purchase at least three domains, one each in .com, .net and .biz (e.g., www.companyname.com, www.companyname.net and www.companyname.biz). These will protect against other companies purchasing closely related domains. Hosting and website packages together will be between $15 and $250 per year, depending on the company. Select payment options carefully, as there may be savings for annual packages.
Obtain a website that may be improved into a basic e-commerce site. This could mean embedding a link for PayPal subscribers. Requiring payment for certain information may be a great revenue stream to offset costs of the information website.
Select a company e-mail. Using email@example.com provides an easy point of contact. Your company's phone number (toll-free is best) should be included on the front page and/or contact page of the website.
Add your information and images to the site. All aforementioned hosting options have simple navigation and editing features. Include an introduction to the product/service/idea of your company and the vision, mission statement, location and hours of operation of the small business. Make the information easy to read, and make it easy for your potential customers' questions to be delivered to you.
Use short paragraphs and bold section headings when applicable. Show pictures or video on the front page to add more reasons for viewers to stay on the site. Any third party testimonials should be placed near the bottom of the page. Keep the front page simple.
Calculate the needs of your target market. Check Google results for keywords on Google Insights to see the popularity of certain words over time. This tool will help determine which words or topics may be applicable to the information site and use those words so searchers will find your site.
Obtain professional assistance from SEO strategists and/or a copywriter. Hiring someone may be the best solution to avoiding tedious marketing, though it will take time to see results. Participation in the social media realm can provide useful insights to complement the information contained on the information website. Twitter updates are one example. These social media interactions can be embedded on the site to provide recent news.
Jamie M. Kisner currently works as a South Florida entrepreneur of JMK Notary & Services and a Miami-Dade College instructor. During her spare time, she writes online content for a variety of sites, including eHow, Digital Journal, Bukisa and Homeless Voice. She holds a master's degree in business administration from Florida's Nova Southeastern University.