Starting a new business is a scary proposition. There is, certainly, a time commitment and often times, with the need for a website, Search Engine Optimization and other marketing services, it can be a costly investment, too!
For an Internet based business, you can start it up for a relatively low cost and in a variety of ways.
Do it yourself
There is nothing wrong with doing the work yourself and this can be a significant cost savings. It can also be a frustrating experience! If you are planning to do your website yourself, do you know what your first step is? (HINT: it isn't with the website design)
Your first step is to decide what your website will do:
- Online brochure site for your company services and products
- E-commerce website selling goods and/or services
- Landing page/Squeeze page for promoting a specific product or service
Once you know that, you can evaluate the HOW of your website. Nine times out of ten, you will need to maintain your website, updating and providing fresh new content. This is one of the ways you prove your authority for the product or service you are maintaining. So, the best option is to utilize a Content Management System (CMS).
We recommend using one of the big CMS systems: Joomla or Word Press. There are many free and low cost templates that are ready made and easy to install.
Once you have your template installed, and are familiar with the CMS administration area, you will be able to create your content. At this stage, you have saved a significant amount of money, and if there are specific customizations you need, you can hire a web development company to handle specific work, instead of paying for them to do the whole thing.
Hiring a company to do the work
If you are in a better financial position, of course, it is always better to have a custom designed website, but that is still not a requirement. You have several options. You can look for a company that offers a "Budget Development Path". The critical thing to keep in mind when going down this path is: Know what your budget is and don't let a company bully you into spending more money than you are comfortable with. Functionality is a major determiner in the price point of your website, so bear that in mind as you are looking for the company that will bring your vision to life.
Interview perspective companies to determine if their methodology compliments the way you work. If there is something you see that you don't like, speak up about it. We can't do anything unless we know there is a problem!
Once you have selected the company to do the work, there is still enough work for you to do such as basic content creation, Social Media pages to be set up and imagery selection for your website. Work collaboratively with the agency you have hired!