Hello and welcome!
To build a personalized, custom website, you'll need to put some time into your content and make some critical decisions - like your business name, to start! I'm here to support and guide you the entire way through this process. Let's get started!
Website copy is all the written content that navigates the reader through your site. Good copy engages the reader, solves their problem, and leads them to taking an action (booking your service/buying your product/applying to your program). To get started, please read Tips to Writing Effective Copy. Here's a copy writing checklist:
Tagline (one line or a set of words that describes your business)
300 Character business description - short, snappy and powerful!
General business description -may include mission/vision/values or philosophy
About me section / bio
Service/product descriptions - 1-2 paragraphs. What is your service? and Why will it solve the viewer's problem? Don't go overboard here - people won't read super long descriptions.
Blog - Title of blog -description if necessary - and at least 2-3 initial blog posts
Events/Workshops/Retreats - descriptions of each event - details - costs, dates, location, min/max participants, things to bring to the event, food available, etc. If you're not sure of dates and locations we can put TBD
Contact page copy
Forms or Policies copy, etc.
If you already have copy written - please read these tips and review your existing copy with these tips in mind!
You'll need to decide what style you're going for with your new website. Light and airy? Modern and architectural? Dark and mysterious? Bright and bold? Dynamic with lots of movement? Professional and down to business? It's important to identify your target audience when it comes to these decisions - different demographics gravitate towards different styles. Get started by looking at some of your favorite websites - what do you like about them? Send me links to any sites that make your heart soar!
Do you have a logo? Do you still love it? A logo can really set the tone for your website and vice versa! If you have a logo you love, we'll likely work from there. If you don't have a logo yet - ask me about logo design.
High quality, professional photos are ideal for building your brand, creating a visually pleasing and relevant story, and boosting your "conversions" (whether a viewer books your service, etc). Please talk to me first (and read this) before booking a photography session - there are things you'll need to know to maximize the success & impact of your shoot.
Professional photographer recommendations:
If professional photos aren't in your budget - don't fret - we can use stock photos. Here are a few tips I use for choosing photos for your website:
Use emotional images. People make decisions with their emotions, and back things up later with logic.
When in doubt (and if relevant) go human - because humans love connecting with other humans!
Always have your target reader in mind - avoid choosing images just because you like them. Ask yourself: Will this image help my reader understand the content? Will this image further my message or be a distraction? Am I in love with this image, or does it actually add value?
Choose photos that support your goal. Just because images improve conversions doesn’t mean you should populate your site with random images. You need to be strategic with your image choice and placement.
Be careful when selecting stock photos - there are a lot of free stock photo sites with images that don’t give off the stock photo feel. Here are a few of our favorites:
If you already have an existing website - I can help transfer your domain to your new one. If you don't have a domain, now's the time to choose a domain name (ie. www.yourbusiness.com)
IMPORTANT: Please don't purchase a domain before discussing with me first - this can cause issues and delay.
If you haven't pinned down a business name or domain name - let's discuss! There are ways to choose domain names that allow you to pivot your business down the road without needing to change your domain (thus keep your SEO rankings). Lastly, domain names are important for building SEOs so choosing the right one is key. You can have more than one domain that all take you to your site.
Listing your contacts (phone, email, address, etc) on your site builds trust with clients and offers a better user experience. There's nothing more frustrating than being unable to get in touch with a human. Now's the time to:
Determine how you want potential clients to contact you.
Create a business email address that reflects the name of your business and makes sense. I recommend starting a gmail account that directly reflects your business name and is easy to spell and say.
Determine your location - physical site, online or both
Social contacts - Facebook/WhatsApp/Instagram/Twitter/YouTube, etc
SOCIAL MEDIA LINKS
You'll need to email me all the links (URLs) to your social media sites to connect them to your website. At launch you'll need to update your social media platforms with your new logo, photos and business description used on your new website to ensure your brand is consistent across all platforms.
I can also embed your social media into your site. Social media "embedding" is the integration of your social media posts and profiles with your website. It can be used to let your customers know you have a social media presence, increases engagement. If you want Facebook or Instagram feeds embedded in your site - I will need access to your account and password - I'll take this info over the phone and then you change your passwords for your security.
I do NOT do any social media management, but will give you a few tips related to marketing.
Testimonials serve as proof that your service or product will be valuable to the consumer. Testimonials build trust and create an emotional connection. They work like referrals, and help explain the benefits of your services and how they work. If you don't have testimonials - now is a good time to make the ask!
If you anticipate having a large amount of video content on your site, I recommend using a video hosting site like YouTube, Dailymotion, Vimeo, or Facebook because the more bandwidth & storage you use on a website the more $$ you're charged per month. Most video host sites allow private content and are FREE (up until a point). Check out this article for more information: https://kinsta.com/blog/video-hosting/
PAYMENT & SCHEDULING APPS
Decide how you want customers to schedule and pay for your services or products. There are a ton of great apps out there (including Wix your website platform) - so do some research and find what works for you. Many of my clients use Square.com and I am available to help set you up on Square or Wix for scheduling and payments. I do not manage these apps for you - I simply can help set up the services initially. You'll need to get intimate with your booking apps so you can manage your money and schedule.
NOTE: At this time Squareup.com does NOT offer service "bundles". You'll have to work around that either using gift cards or entering multiple services at a discount at the point of service.
You'll need to provide me with a list of your services/products with descriptions, variations, timing and pricing. Depending on your business this list may include:
Service/product variations (in person/distance/zoom/etc)
Service/appointment length (how long is the session)
How much time to block off between session
Membership details and cost
Subscription details and cost
Tuition details and cost - deadlines to apply, etc
Gift card options, etc.
Make all your forms and policies available on your site for your clients' convenience. Your website can serve as an organizational hub for you too. If you consistently refer to certain practitioners or recommend certain books - we can add a "bookshelf" or "referrals" page. You'll need to gather this info and email it to me.
We can embed certain forms into the site so clients can fill it out on your website. However, Wix.com is not encrypted for private medical information. If you require HIPPA protected info from client's you'll need to use an encrypted platform. I cannot help with that, but I can connect a link from your website to that platform.
Now's the time to craft your inclusion/equity/diversity statement so people know your business, group, organization is inclusive to all - better yet - share with your viewer the actions your business takes to be inclusive.
Building an email list is crucial for marketing & growing your business because it's the best way to build a relationship with potential customers in an intimate way. Email subscriptions can build your list and grow your business.
Membership features on your site can help build a community around your business or organization. Ask me about all the features offered for site members.
Blogging is a critical way to drive traffic to your website and increase your SEOs. The more you post, the more content the search engines have to crawl and index. This means they can easily recognize that your site is a resource of information for people to access. This drives more people to your site.
You don't have to be a "blogger" to use a blog! You can use your blog to announce discounts on services or upcoming events. You can use it to notify your subscribers of changes to a schedule or change in locations. You don't have to call it a blog - in fact coming up with a funky name is ideal.
Let's discuss how you'd like to set up a blog - I highly recommend this feature if you're up for it!
There are many other features you can add to your site: a shop, live chat, events organizer, password-only/members-only pages, subscriptions, shared member gallery, pop-up lightboxes, etc.
Adding features makes your website more dynamic and convenient for the user BUT it also means more for you to manage. It's a balancing act. Ask me about features that might make your life easier and we'll discuss!
I'm very much looking forward to this journey with you!