The truth is… it doesn’t really matter which website platform you’re using.
Whether you’re using Squarespace or WordPress, Wix, Weebly or one of those Free Website Builders from GoDaddy or another host… it’s really just a matter of preference and budget.
I work strictly in WordPress. I prefer it because it’s based on open-source software. That means that no single company owns it or controls it. (There are two versions of WordPress — I’m talking about the WordPress.org version, not the WordPress.com version, which is owned by Automattic.)
Another deciding factor for me is that WordPress has the largest number of plugins and extensions available. Developers can create plugins and upload them to the WordPress repository — which means there are some really exceptional functions you can use on your site. The platform is pretty powerful for that reason.
WordPress is automatically Search Engine Friendly — some of the smaller free website builders may have issues with Search Engine Optimization (SEO) not working well, which is important.
And it comes with a blog — another important thing to look for. Some of our clients have struggled with websites that do not automatically have blogs.
It’s also important that you have a mobile-friendly website — but that’s usually dependent on the theme you use, as opposed to the platform.
All things considered, you can create equally beautiful sites on most platforms. Most are fairly user-friendly.
But really, what matters about your website is your content, branding and how you use it as part of your sales and marketing systems.
What to Avoid
If you’ve ever seen a website that just didn’t feel quite right for the business, or didn’t inspire you to take action of any sort, you’ll have a sense of what does NOT work.
I’ve seen business owners purchase a website design, or a template – then attempt to “fit” their information into the given slots and spaces.
Other businesses hire someone with appropriate skills (design or development, for example), but without marketing and copywriting expertise.
Some savvy entrepreneurs might get a custom-built website with empty pages, and even hire a copywriter to fill in the blanks. The end-goal is to “get” a website. But, this fails to get into the business benefit and sales potential.
It’s possible to get your website cost-effectively, but you have to start with a clear understanding of how it fits into your marketing plan.
How Your Website Fits Into Your Marketing Plan
Instead of charging head-first into getting a new website up as fast, or cheaply, as possible, start by getting really clear on your business model, your sales system and figure out what part of your business you want to grow.
The vision for your website should be similar to the vision for your business. Your website can make it really clear and sharp, so visitors to your website immediately know what you do, who you do it for, and whether they’d like to talk to you.
This sharpness of purpose requires a lot of clarity from the business owner. I have a list of questions I typically ask when I work one-on-one with clients, in order to understand their business well. I build the website around their answers. Surprisingly, these are the same questions you’d expect to work on if you hired a business coach. It’s hard for a web designer or marketer to communicate your vision really well until you can define it for yourself. You can get a version of my clarity questions at the bottom of this post.
In a Nutshell…
What matters most is who you get to build your website, and how well they understand the inner workings of your sales and marketing systems. Make sure you use a web designer who understands your entire online marketing plan and your sales system, as a whole. It’s surprising to me how many businesses get poor websites, usually because the website doesn’t work as a part of their entire digital marketing system.
Work with me to define your vision — get my free 25 Clarity Questions below.
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