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Steven Godson
Steven Godson

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5 things to consider when planning your business website

As a business owner in this modern world of ours you want to be able to engage with as wide an audience as possible to maximise your potential revenue.

There are many ways in which you can achieve this but most, if not in reality all, rely on having an internet presence. So what should this presence be?

Social media is an obvious place to start. Huge audiences, ready built platforms, global reach etc. However, whilst social media platforms are superb for marketing and customer/client engagement, they are enhancements rather than a replacement for a website/app.

The benefits of your business having a dedicated website are;

  • bespoke styling and theme to match your businesses brand
  • having the User Experience (UX) that you need driven through the User Interface (UI) that you want
  • order lifecycle control from basket creation through to payment and order status management
  • integration with your payment service
  • you can share specialised content behind a secure login

So you have decided that your business deserves a website. What do you need to consider? the simple answer is "Lots!" but there are a number of key areas that will help get you started and ensure success. An overview of each of these areas and what they mean to you is summarised below.

Where should I host my site?

This decision very much depends on a number of factors.

  1. how much control you want to have over the look and feel of your website?
  2. do you want to build / maintain the website yourself or get a professional to do the work?
  3. how much traffic are you expecting?
  4. how frequently will your website structure or functionality, not content, be likely to change?
  5. what technologies do I want my website built with?

The specifics of which hosting provider you ultimately go with is a decision between you and, assuming you are not self-building, your web developer. The two high level choices are;

Hosted Service

This is where you use a service such as,, et, there are many to choose from, and build your website using their templates, 'wizards' etc.

These are a, relatively, painless approach to building a website, especially for the non-technical, and you can be up and running in a fairly short period of time.

There is, however, a trade off.

Using one of these services means you have less control over how and where your website/data is hosted, as well as having to live with the constraints that the service provider places upon you in terms of what can and cannot be achieved within their service.

This may be perfectly acceptable to you and your business, especially when starting out where you want something quick and easy, but be mindful of the future when your business is growing rapidly and you need to migrate to a more functionally rich solution.

Self Hosted

The title of this option is somewhat misleading in that you do not have to build your own data centre, networks etc, rather that you take responsibility, albeit sub-contracted out to cloud providers and professionals, for where and how your website/app is hosted as well as the maintenance of the solution.

This opens up a cornucopia of possibilities and technology choices which, as a business owner, you may not want to spend time on. This is absolutely fine as you can leave a lot of these decisions to your trusted professionals who should be able to guide you down the right path depending on what business outcomes you want to achieve.

There is, of course, a trade off. See what I did there...

By implementing your website/app in this way it is quite possible that it will be more expensive than using a Hosted Service.

However the benefits from this approach, which in my experience outweigh the costs, are;

  • flexibility
  • scaleability
  • speed of change
  • ability to try out new technologies
  • ability to swap out providers to get better prices or enhanced services

Domain name

So firstly "What is a domain name?"...

Alt Text

This is a key decision as the domain name you choose needs to be;

  1. memorable - choose something that will stick in the memory,
  2. meaningful - relate to your business name or what your business does,
  3. available - you need to make sure that the domain name you want is available

It is also worth considering whether you want to register, although not necessarily use, multiple top level domains, such as, .com,, .uk etc.

This is usually done to safeguard your business against competitors against trading under a similar web address and capitalising on your brand and hard work. These can be registered all together, some Registrars provide bulk discounts, or later on as your business grows.

The one thing to be mindful of is that domain name registration is an ongoing cost, frequency dependent on which Registrar you choose, and needs to be maintained otherwise you lose rights to the domain name(s) and your website will no longer be reachable.

SEO / Analytics - putting you on the map, and keeping you there

Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) is all about getting to Page 1 on a Google search (other search engines are apparently available) and can be seen as a form of wizardry at times.

There are many articles that can be found online that go into this subject in much greater depth than I would want to in this article. Suffice to say that there are a few key considerations that you need to give consideration to when thinking about website/app for your business.

  • Metadata - this is the, mostly, unseen content in you site that search engines look for and index for users to search against. the main three are;
    • Title - the text that appears in your browser tab
    • Description - tells search engines what your site or page is for
    • Keywords - the words that you specifically would like search engines to include your site in searches for
  • Sitemaps and Robots.txt - these are files that need to be created and stored in the root directory of your website/app and are specifically there to help search engines by telling what content is important and what can be ignored

All this is great but unless you pro-actively monitoring your performance and adjusting accordingly your website is unlikely to rise to the heady heights of Page 1.

There are many, free and paid for, services and tools that will help you do this. My recommendation is that you start off with a free one, such as Google Analytics, and see how you get on before progressing to a paid tool.

If you are time poor, understandable as you are building the next mega corporation, then outsourcing this to a professional who will do the monitoring and maintenance for you is a great way to take the stress away.

Images - stock vs owned

Depending on what your business does or is trying to market with a website then you will need to consider where your images come from and whether you want to pay a license fee or provide your own images, assuming you own the rights to use them, and have these on the site.

I always look at it like this.

Am I showing a proprietary product or service that I want to have specific images of on my website?

If YES, then either hire a professional photographer to take the images you want (make sure the price includes you owning the right to own/use) or, if you are a budding photographer, take the images yourself and store them securely.

If NO, then using stock images, from services such as Getty or Unsplash, is a great way to go. Just make sure you read the licensing terms and understand whether you need to add a 'credit' against each image or somewhere on your website.

Content / Copy

Similar to images the written content on your website/app also needs to be considered and either outsourced to professionals or, if you have the experience necessary qualifications / experience / skills, do the job yourself.

Consideration should be given to bringing in professionals for the following areas;

  • Legal and Commercial
  • Sales and Marketing
  • Technical Writing
  • Content creation e.g. articles or blogs


All of this can seen quite daunting, especially if you don't come from a technical background.

That is why I started Xenos-Design Ltd, as I wanted to provide high quality services and use my decades of technical and service delivery experience to take the weight of your shoulders.

I am always happy to have a chat, whether to offer advice or to discuss a project that you would like to undertake, and can be reached at

Top comments (1)

pnb profile image
Philos Mudis

For the copy, a person should also think about the kind of posts they want to write versus posts they would be comfortable outsourcing to freelance writers. The top / pillar / primary webpages should usually be created by the owner.

Other supporting pieces can be outsourced to freelance writers out there - either on freelance marketplaces or by simply reaching out to someone whose expertise you like.

These people can be found in places like Quora, LinkedIn, Facebook groups, Google Search and even through a site like this one.