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Simple and Effective:
Making a Business Web Site

By Lynn Eriksen

You have a small business, you're on a budget, and you need a web site to reach your audience. The good news is that it's not hard. Here is a simple plan to help you get effective results.

Keep the Home Page Current

Your home page should contain current news and information about new services, events, products and sales. This allows new visitors to see that your business is active, and returning visitors will have a central place to find new information.

Search engine savvy
Want to be at the top when people search the web?� Changing your home page frequently will attract search engines to your web site which can improve your search rankings.

Let them discover
Don't worry about having an 'about us' section on the home page. Your visitors will figure what your business is about by what services and products you have to offer. You can have a separate 'about us' page for those that want to know more specifics. Less clutter on the homepage will also add clean lines that are easy to navigate visually.


Every Story has its own Page

When you create a news or event item you'll want to place it on in a separate page. Once this news, event page is ready to go public, you can put a short summary with a link to it from the home page. This tactic has several advantages. First, a summary and link from the home page helps keep the home page readable. Nobody likes a cluttered home page. Second, each news or event page can be found independently in the search engines which increase your odds of being found. Lastly, having readers navigate inside the site encourages further exploration.


Every Page is part of a List

Create an archive page for news and events
When you create a news or event item, you want to make sure to list it on a separate news or event archive page. When it's time to change your home page and the news or event link is removed, people can still find it by looking on the archive page. Plus, this keeps the page on file with the search engine. If you remove the page link from the public, you are also removing it from the search engines as well. The content you create for your web site is important to your current and future readers. And keeping the full content of your web site in view can improve your odds of being found via search engines.


Keep Contact Simple

If someone wants to get in touch, make it as easy as possible. The bare minimum is to have a single contact page that shows your phone and e-mail address. A more advanced technique allows for a contact form at the bottom of each news and event page. When using a contact form, keep the needed information to 'Name', 'E-mail' and 'Question/Comment.' You can also have separate forms for custom product requests that have features beyond your standard contact form.

Use a Shopping Cart for Products

If you have products for sale you'll want to use a shopping cart to allow users to buy directly online. An affordable shopping cart can be create by using the Paypal Shopping Cart. Using even s simple shopping cart greatly increases the chances for your product to be sold online.

Keep in touch through email
You may also add an email sign up so they can be notified when the site is updated.� It's an easy way to keep in touch and remind them to return to the site.

These are a few simple ideas that will not only reduce your stress, but make you fabulously good-looking.� Well, let's just say you will look really great to the person who wanted you to build the web site.

Thanks so much for reading this page in its entirety. I hope you enjoy the rewards of having your own business web site that is effective and beautiful. And more importantly, I hope it empowers your business to do what it does best, starting right now!


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