Whether you are just starting out, have been in business for years or changing your line of business; getting your business online might seem like a daunting task. Every day there is something new to learn and just when you think you have the hang of that new accounting program or fax machine – they bring out something new!
I want to help you by setting it out step-by-step. Telling you exactly what you need to know while leaving out the jargon that leaves everyone confused!
For google, their domain is google.co.za. Your domain is your street address on the world wide web. Where does your business live? You will need your own address (or domain name). Choosing your domain name is a very important step as your it will assist others in finding you (as well as help search engines – like google – find you). If your business was hair for example and your business was called ‘Scissors’ then scissorscutshair.co.za would be better than scissors.co.za as it contains ‘keywords’ in the domain. So, think carefully when choosing your domain name.
Cost: Currently, you are looking at between R100 – R300 per year depending on where you register it. .co.za domains are better if your market is mainly South Africans, whereas .com is better if you have international clients. .com domains usually cost more.
Once you have registered your domain, you will need to host (house) you website content somewhere. All your business information needs to live somewhere. You have the address, now you need to start building! If you are going for a simple static website with just your basic information, your hosting can be small and simple. If, however, you would like to go for a dynamic website that you can update yourself – you will need hosting that provides a database or 2.
Cost: Hosting starts from about R100 per month (for simple hosting) and can go up to R250 per month or more. It all depends on where you host your website (and domain name). You can usually register your domain name and hosting at the same place. The process is simple and you can usually give them a call if you get confused.
Well Done! If you have reached this point you are well on your way. The next thing you need to do is to find a designer to design your website (this is where we come in). We will set up your email address (if your hosting plan allows for it), so that you can have an email that is aligned with your business website, for eg. firstname.lastname@example.org. We will discuss what your vision is for your website and get all the necessary images and information.
Cost: This depends on who you use. This is a once-off payment and you will only be charged again should you wish to have changes made (There are also payment plans).
Search Engine Optimisation
The only other costs that you might need to think about is marketing and Search Engine Optimisation. We do a little bit of optimisation to each website (for free) but there is alot more you can do to get your website noticed. Online and Offline.