5 keys to building a website from scratch

Nearly half of small-business owners have a paltry Web presence. If that sounds like your company—or your client—you’ll need a strategy to go from newbie to Facebook pro.

That can create obvious problems: Customers won’t be able to find you easily in a Google search or, worse, they’ll find a negative review of your business.

For example, if a local restaurant doesn’t have a website, Yelp can come in as the first search result, running the risk that an anonymous, negative review is the first thing a potential customer will read about the restaurant.

But there’s another conundrum for small-business owners: Many of them are trying to skip a step by going straight from having no Web presence to social media greatness.

I’m talking them out of it one by one. Here’s why:

At their most basic, websites are content storage for your business. For a retail business, the content is the products you sell. For service providers, it’s a description of the services you provide.

Social media sites are far better equipped to broadcast information; however, they’re not that great at storing it in any meaningful way. Your website is your story, written your way. It’s your opportunity to define your strengths in a compelling way. Don’t you want that to be the first thing your potential customers read?

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