The Beginner's Guide On

How to make a small business website

make A small business website

This is a complete beginners guide on how to make a small business website in 2022.

In this in-depth guide you’ll learn:

  • How to buy a domain name & hosting
  • What is WordPress
  • How to choose the best theme & builder
  • How to make a small business website (step-by-step)
  • Loads more.


So if you’re ready to go “all in” with web design, this guide is for you.

Let’s dive right in.

How to make a small business website (in 6 simple steps)

Lesson One

Domain Names & Hosting

This lesson will acquaint you with the base of your website development. Here, you will learn what domains are and which is the best for your budget. Also, we will guide you on the best hosting options & providers you should use for your business.

Lesson Two

What Is WordPress & How To get set up

This lesson is a straightforward guide on why you should use a WordPress (WP) website. That’s not all; we also included why WP is best for beginners like you. Most importantly, you will learn how to get started with a WP business site.

Lesson Three

Choosing A Theme & Page Builder

Your website design and functionality are crucial to how prospects will react to your services. That is why we will explain how to get the best combination of the two features in this lesson with elements such as your theme and page builder.
Lesson four

What Is A Plugin & Which Are Essential?

Here, we will discuss how a plugin can alleviate the pain of managing your business websites. We will discuss what tools are best for rectifying issues like page speed – and many more.

Lesson Five

Building Your First Website

This lesson is an elaborate one that will walk you through setting up a website. We will show the elements you need and how to use them. The best part: you will find videos to guide you through till the end.
Lesson Six

Launching Your New Website

After setting up your website, it is not ready and visible to your clients yet. Beyond the codes and design, you need to upload and launch your site. Those crucial details are what this lesson will discuss.

Introduction

How to make a small business website

Spoiler alert: this robust piece is much more than a guide; think of it as your best friend narrating a story to you on how to make a small business website.

And boy, we are naturally gifted at storytelling.

So, sit tight; let’s help you simplify the processes of website design.

How to start a small business website
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We get it; you run a small business and all the money you’ve got counts – even to the last cent. That’s why you are shrewd with your expenses and luxuries, eh?

We totally get you!

But do you know that online presence isn’t a luxury? Do you know that a website is as crucial to your business as your budgeting and feasibility studies?

make A small business website

If you answered no, let’s enlighten you:

This is not the 70s where everything was white and black. You see, we now live in a digital world brimming with creative and explosive innovations. As such, brick and mortar (only) stores are soon fading away. If you rely on such a business model, your well-laid venture will wither.

So, to meet up with trends and the digital age, you also need to flow with the current: move your shop online. And to do that, you need to start with a website. How so?

Your website is like a front desk officer that briefs your clients about your services. It tells your brand story and catapults you beyond your geological restrictions.

And once you appropriate your website, you can start thinking of:

  • SEO, Search Engine Optimization,
  • SEM, Search Engine Marketing,
  • SMM, Social Media Marketing, and 
  • GMB, Google My Business.


Summarily, you need a base for your digital marketing, and your website is that base.

That said, know that building just any website would do your business more harm than good. For example, a poorly designed site will hurt your brand reputation, dent your sales, and negate your credibility.

More so, anything worth doing is worth doing well. So, don’t settle for poorly designed websites. Go for the best – your small business deserves it!

But how? How can you get the best website for your venture? How to make a small business website?

This robust guide has all the answers. And yes, we understand that lengthy articles can be a turnoff. Even at that, we wouldn’t let you lose out on a vital detail for your business.

For that reason, we have sorted this ultimate guide into categories that are detailed and snackable.

Lesson one

How To Choose The Best Dedicated WordPress Hosting And Buy A Domain Name

If you want to make a small business website that is functional and appealing for your customers, we say, start from the base and the most confusing features: domain names and hosting.

Simply put, what name would most represent your business ideas and goals?

Where do I get a domain name? Where should you host your website? Should I use shared or dedicated hosting?

This section holds all the answers.

But before we delve into the details, let’s discuss the basics.

SEO & Web Design
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What Is A Domain Name? Is It Important?

A domain name is simply the name you give your website – in your case, your pending website. Perhaps that definition is confusing; here is even a better version:

What Is A Domain Name?

When your clients ask for your web address, a domain name is what you tell them.

For example, my domain name at Scott Latham Digital is scottlathamdigital.com.

Did you see what I did there?

I modeled my domain name after my company, and it directly explains what we do. When you plan your website, you should follow such an approach too. Why?

You don’t want to confuse your customers with complex names.

What you need is a web address that stands out and communicates your business within seconds.

Besides the visitors of your web address, your domain name is crucial to ranking on Google.

And like humans, Google bots would understand your business better when your domain name is straightforward. And when that happens, the bots will crawl, index, and rank your pages fast.

Sounds good, eh?

So to answer the headline question, yes, domain names are crucial to businesses, and it is best that you get them right from the start.

But how?

How can you create a unique, customer-friendly, and SEO-friendly web address?

Factors To Note When Choosing Your Domain Name

Choosing a domain name is difficult.

Especially in today’s modern internet driven world.

Many of the domain name you fancy, may have already been taken, including your brand or company name.

So what do you need to think of when choosing your domain name? We’ll take a look at some key points below.

Keep it Simple

The first thing you should appropriate for your domain name is clarity. And yes, we understand that you want a unique tag, but a complex one isn’t in any way creative. Besides, even concise and clear names can be creative, plus they are easy to remember.

Think back to your favorite websites. Are they long and confusing? We bet the answer is no! And we even have an example for you:

If you’re a football fan, you’d know goal.com; it is just four letters, no symbols, and straight to the point.

You wouldn’t even need a bookmark to remember the site; such simplicity is what will make your website an instant hit.

Summarily, do away from long and odd domain names and stick with the shorter and easy-pronounced alternatives. Else, you risk your clients mistyping your web address and going to your competitor.

Pro tip: like your domain name, the extension (TLD, Top Level Domain) behind it should also be concise and clear. About that, “.com” is often the best option.

Keyword Optimisation

While simplifying your domain name, don’t forget to optimize it for desirable keywords in your niche.

Think about it; a concise and keyword-optimised web address will be endearing to both your customers and Google. It is like killing two birds with a stone!

However, be careful not to stuff your domain name with keywords – one or two should suffice.

Moreover, you only need a broad term that describes your business offerings. Your blog and web content can always help you rank for other keywords.

Confusing, eh?

Look at our website as an example; you will see that we combined our name, “scottlatham,” and a keyword, “digital.” That way, you can tell at a glance that we offer digital services.

And all that detail is just “a keyword.”

So, be like us!

Pro tip: you can get inspiration for your domain names from widely-used keyword research tools like Google Keyword Planner and KWFinder. And once you have the keyword, proceed to Domain Wheel; type in the word(s), and the wheel will suggest addresses you can use.


Know The Right Place To Buy Your Domain Name

Once you have settled on a desirable domain name, the next step is its registration.

This stage can be somewhat hectic. But don’t fret; we will simplify it.

To register your domain name, you must first buy it. You can do that either when signing up for a hosting plan or directly from a hosting or registrar company.

Regardless of the route you’d eventually take, we will advise you to buy from GoDaddy.

Why?

We use GoDaddy and can attest firsthand to how straightforward the processes are, especially for small businesses and beginners. Nevertheless, you can try your luck with any domain registrars.

But if you prefer to save time, be assured of safety, and get a super-easy process, choose GoDaddy. Afterward, follow these steps to register your domain name:

  1. Open your browser and visit https://godaddy.com.
  2. When the page loads, you will find a search bar. Input your desired domain name and click “search domain.”
  3. The search results will tell you if the typed address is already used, for sale, or free to use.
  4. If your desired domain name is free to use, you will see the price. And then, you can add it to the cart and purchase it. Even better, you will have alternative names you could try from the search results.
  5. When your desired address is already in use and for sale, you will find the options to buy it on GoDaddy. There is even a section for auctions. But if the price is too much for your budget, you can try tweaking the TLD.

That’s all: in just five steps, you now own a domain name.

However, note that you don’t yet have a website.

About that, we will advise you to go for a WordPress site – they are the best fit for small businesses – and even large corporations.

But we’ll come to that in a later chapter.

Even at that, you still need a host’s server to run your website.

That brings us to the second phase of this guide:

What Is WordPress Hosting?
Which Is The Best: Shared Or Dedicated WordPress hosting?

For better understanding, we will start with web hosting. 

When you have a domain name, you have files that you want to show your customers.

And sure, your codes are already in place and can be offline.

But for your target audience to access your website, you need to upload your details to the World Wide Web.

Summarily, web hosting means uploading your website and its files to the internet to make it available and accessible to your target audience.

SEO & Web Design

In the same vein, WordPress hosting means you upload your “WordPress website” to the World Wide Web.

Baseline: WordPress hosting helps WordPress websites get homes online.

And because it is a streamlined plan, it is the perfect fit for the performance and security needs of WP websites.

That said, you should know there are different kinds of WordPress hosting available for your small business.

Of the lot, these two are the commonly used:

  • Shared WordPress hosting
  • Dedicated WordPress hosting

 

Shared WordPress Hosting

Like the name, shared WordPress hosting means your site will share server (allocations on the WWW) with other websites – businesses.

On the affordability end, this option is the best, especially since you are a small business.

But if you consider performance, security, and the overall comfort of running a business, we will advise against shared hosting.

And don’t get us wrong; a shared hosting plan would work for your WordPress site. But it is has it’s major issues regarding security and performance.

Once you use the option for a business that you plan to grow, the servers risk your customers security as well as the potential of your website being hacked.

Moreover, other users on that shared server might wish to scale up too. When that happens, your website will lag for performance.

Unfortunately, that would spiral down your SEO, and ultimately your sales.

Dedicated WordPress Hosting

Unlike shared options,  dedicated WordPress hosting  does not share servers.

Here, you will get full access to the server you are renting. But we also have to warn you; such unrestricted accessibility comes at a price.

Dedicated WordPress hosting is more expensive but worth every penny.

For starters, it comes with jaw-widening speed. More importantly, this option lets you tweak your site as you’d like, plus you can test the changes before they go live.

So, if you are planning a business that would soon grow wings and attract tons of traffic, dedicated WordPress hosting is the best option for you.

And about security and performance, dedicated WordPress hosting is a beast – you are in control of the entire process; there’s nothing more secure than that!

Shared Vs. Dedicated WordPress Hosting: Which Should You Pick?

There is no debate here; the best option is dedicated WordPress hosting.

It is fast, secured, and offers you a great deal of control.

At this point, we understand that you are thinking about the money.

And we get it! Indeed, £15 per month is some investment, especially when you are a small business.

So, yes, your worries are only normal – any business owner would worry about expenses.

However, know that shared hosting can get you spending more in the long run. What if there were security issues? How about speed and performance?

Alright, let’s shed off Pessimist Thomas.

Do you have the time to be caching? Or counting your luck hoping your server housemates would bring your business harm?

You see, there are just many disadvantages to shared hosting. Where as dedicated WordPress hosting can offer you comfort, and that is why we use it at Scott Latham Digital.

One last note: choosing dedicated WordPress hosting isn’t enough; you should ensure you get it from the right source.

Fortunately, we are one! We’ll ever set everything up for you can get your going and keep you running at ZERO hassle to yourself.

So, reach out now, and let’s sort it out now, before proceeding to the next chapter!

Lesson Two

What Is WordPress And How To Set It Up

WordPress is one of the major platforms that you must master if you want to promote yourself or your business.

With over 400 million users, WordPress helps you build a website without using codes or design. 

It gives you the power to make a small business website of any type by following a simple process, WordPress offers all the resources needed to create an excellent website. 

SEO & Web Design
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What Is WordPress?

WordPress began in 2003 as a blogging platform but it has now grown into a Content Management System (CMS). The WordPress software is written in PHP scripting language and everything about it is stored in the database. The beauty of WordPress is that the hosting company handles all the technical parts of running the website. 

WordPress transcends beyond location and culture, it offers you an option to pick the language of your choice. Also, you can easily upload your content regardless of where you find yourself. This platform allows you to create professional websites requiring little or no technical knowledge in web creation. 

This system distinguishes itself by offering you the freedom to create your website in whatever way you desire. With its unique features, you can get your website to rank well on Google and gain more authority. 

Why WordPress Stands Out Against Similar Platforms- The Features 

Among other platforms such as Drupal and Joomla, WordPress stands out with its peculiar feature that allows beginners to create a website without requiring any knowledge of programming. 

why use wordpress

Although both Joomla and Drupal are free to use, they require that you have prior knowledge about PHP programming language, HTML CSS, and other technical subjects to create a website. However, other platforms such as Squarespace require that you pay. WordPress distinguishes itself in various areas that benefit its users. 

Here are the peculiar features of the WordPress platform: 

Open Source and Free

Although you would have to pay little for web hosting, WordPress never requires you to pay to use the platform. It is open-source software that you can share and modify as it is accessible to all. WordPress already has a system that ensures that it gives you an unlimited number of resources to create a website that suits your niche, taste, and preference. 

Theme System

WordPress contains a directory of themes that would help you handle the design part of your website. These themes are easy to use and they help you to create a beautiful website that draws the reader’s attention. You can upload a suitable theme by clicking a button, and in a short time, you can transform your website with the right themes. 

Plugins

This platform contains a whole lot of features that you can tap into. There is a plugin directory for every feature you are willing to expand on WordPress. You can add social media widgets, complex galleries, spam protection, calendars, and even forms to enhance the general functionality of your website. WordPress also helps you in handling Search Engine Optimization(SEO) through specific plugins that help you rank well on Google. 

Community

Based on the popularity of WordPress, it gives you access to a supportive and active community that is ready to help you rise. If you ask questions on the support forums, you can easily get help from a volunteer. To gain more knowledge about the workings of WordPress, you can attend a Meetup or a Wordcamp where you can gain tutorials and read blog posts to increase your understanding. The community is at the heart of WordPress. 

Publishing Tools

What’s the essence of creating content that you cannot manage properly? WordPress considers this to help you create a working structure to ensure effective content management. 

You can create content drafts, make a schedule for your content and look out for post revisions. It empowers you to either make your content private or public and also secure the pages using a solid password. 

Benefits Of WordPress 

From the unique features of the WordPress platform, you can easily deduce that it has enormous benefits that users enjoy by using it.

Here are a few: 

WordPress benefits

User-Friendly 

The WordPress platform is easy for beginners to use and set up by themselves. All the features that you require to keep your account up and running are accessible and visible. 

You need a domain name, web hosting that you can install using your hosting provider or one you upload directly. Afterward, you gain access to the Admin dashboard that contains all the necessary details to help you use the platform effectively. 

Easy Installation

Installing WordPress requires no special skill or expertise. If you follow the necessary steps, your website would be ready for your audience to visit and use. 

Flexible 

If your company has specific needs and requirements, WordPress has a flexible nature that allows you to build around it. The source files are easily accessible with numerous themes that you can customize at your convenience. It also contains premium and basic plugins that you can use in whatever way you deem to publish your content on the internet. 

Extensible

WordPress is highly beneficial because it uses plugins that help extend the functionality of your website. You can find up to 100 plugins on WordPress that contain extra features that would enhance your site. If you are not satisfied with the plugins that you find on WordPress, install custom plugins from the third-party developers that would suit your needs. 

Versatile

WordPress covers various niches that you can conveniently choose from. Although it supports blogging, it is not relegated to only that use. 

You can also use it for more complex sites such as e-commerce stores, multinational operations, or even use it to host a social network. It has grown beyond its initial focus on blogging to include other functions. 

How To Set Up WordPress

Setting up a WordPress website is simple and it requires you to go through five steps that would give your space an excellent look within a short time.

how to set up wordpress

Many of these steps we will cover in more depth throughout this How To Make A Small Business Website guide.

However, just to recap, here are the easy steps to take in setting up a WordPress website: 

Choose A Domain Name 

Read in more detail in Lesson one.

For your audience to find you easily, you have to choose a domain name. This name is what your readers use to identify your brand and it’s the address that is used to access your website. 

Make sure that your choice of the domain name is available and it has not been chosen by others. You can use Bluehost to check for a suitable name. Settle for a “.com” name that your audience would easily remember.  

Select A Hosting Provider 

Read in more detail in Lesson one.

Your hosting provider is responsible for the technical aspect of putting a WordPress account together. There are different packages that you can choose from. This step requires that you pay for web hosting but if you use Bluehost, you can get a free domain name and an affordable web hosting plan that would provide for your needs. 

Install WordPress And Pick A Theme 

Read in more detail in Lesson three.

WordPress would install automatically using your hosting provider. You have to just click the “login” button and choose an appealing theme for your website. Try not to fuss over the theme to use because you can still change it. 

Although it is still important, the content also contributes to how the website looks. If you prefer to use unique themes, then you can use premium themes rather than generic ones. 

Select Appropriate Plugins

Read in more detail in Lesson four.

After you select a theme, it gives you access to the admin dashboard. This is the backend of your website that allows you to regulate what your audience sees on your site. On this dashboard, you would find the space for plugins, install them to extend your site functionality and outlook. 

Customise Site 

Read in more detail in Lesson four.

When you are done with the other steps, the next thing to do is to have some fun on your website by customizing it. You can work on your color choice, font styles, and the unique elements that depict your company’s brand and personality. 

Then, you can dive into writing the content for your website. Make sure to use Google Analytics to track the progress of your website and how your readers respond to the content that is on your page. You can also link it to Google Console to make it error-free. 

Conclusion 

WordPress offers you a wide range of options and functionality that would help you create stellar content. If you go through the steps on this page, you would successfully get your site to rank well on Google and also offer services that your audience needs. 

The process is an exciting one when the result starts to unfold before your eyes. WordPress is built to make you access a wide audience and readership that would access your products. If you are a blogger, you can even make money from it. 

Do you need more information on how to navigate the WordPress platform? We offer exceptional services in ensuring that your website is excellent. 

Lesson Three

Choosing The Best WordPress Theme & Page Builder

Your website is like a book and the theme is the cover. And, if the cover looks bad nobody would care to read its content. 

With the reduction of attention span, you have only 50 milliseconds to create an opinion about your site to your audience and your theme is responsible for that.

With thousands of themes and page builders for WordPress, you can get overwhelmed in making a perfect choice.

Best WordPress Theme
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What Is The Difference Between
A WordPress Theme & A Page Builder? 

A WordPress theme and a page builder perform similar functions in customizing the look of your website and its operation.

The Difference Between A WordPress Theme And A Page Builder

However, they differ in the way they work. 

A theme is a design with a precoded layout that requires no creative prowess to use.

It controls the display settings responsible for every post that you publish. It includes logos, typography, menus, color scheme, and widget selections.

They are all customizable. 

However, a page builder moves beyond the level of a theme to allow you to customize the posts and pages within your WordPress theme.

You gain more flexibility to use advanced customization features without creating new code. It allows you to simply drag and drop the elements that you need.

Why Is Your Website Theme
& Page Builder Important? 

You have to be extra careful when choosing a website theme and page builder for the following reasons: 

Speed

Most beginners lack a proper understanding of how a website theme and page builder can affect the overall site speed.

When a theme is coded poorly and packed with unnecessary features, the load time increases. No one is going to visit your website if it takes forever to load.

Website speed is also a factor that search engines consider to make your page rank. 

Security

To safeguard your website from possible attackers, it is expedient that you pay close attention to your website theme.

When you fail to update the theme of your website regularly, you increase the level of vulnerability that it has to attackers.

Now, that means all your hard work would go down the drain. 

How To Choose A Website Theme And Page Builder

Now, let’s look at the factors you must consider before choosing a website theme. 

Design 

Although WordPress has many themes that have tons of colors, attractive animations, and a complicated layout, you have to choose the design that suits you best.

In most cases, you don’t need all of that because the best kind of theme is the simple one. 

The design must support the overall goal that you are willing to achieve. Make sure you never trade great looks for an excellent user experience.

The presentation style of the theme must be uncomplicated and easy.

Include lots of white space and keep things simple. 

The major purpose of a WordPress theme is to make sure your audience gets their information easily. It should also serve as a template for site owners to fulfill their goals.

Remember, regardless of how beautiful the theme looks, if your users can’t find their way around your site, it is total crap. 

Responsive Design 

A responsive theme and page builder ensures that the layout of your website adjusts properly to all screen sizes and designs.

Most of the traffic generated on search engines is from handheld devices and mobiles. 

With a responsive design, you can read text on your screen without having to zoom in or out.

Also, the whole page must be within a clear view without requiring horizontal scrolling.

Another feature of a responsive page builder is that users would be able to select the navigation buttons without any hassle. 

You should check your website by using Google’s mobile-friendly test tool. This test usually contains some red flags that would help you choose the appropriate theme for your site. 

Compatibility With Plugins 

When you want software with extra features and functionalities for your website, a plugin is what you install. Most frequently used themes on WordPress have no problem with plugins. 

However, you can still check the features or simply ask a developer if your WordPress theme is compatible with the essential plugins you need. These plugins include Yoast SEO, Gravity Forms, etc.

Try to avoid themes that are marketed as all-in-one because they have a high tendency of being incompatible with plugins.

Also, check the page builder and other plugins themselves to see if they were properly coded so it doesn’t affect your website. 

Browser Compatibility 

You must consider that your users would be using various browsers to reach your page. If you would serve all of them excellently, then you have to ensure that your website looks good on other browsers. 

WordPress theme developers test run their themes vigorously by checking if it is compatible with various browsers.

However, you can also run basic tests on them by using different browsers such as Firefox, Internet Explorer, Google Chrome, etc.  

Test the website on various browsers using your mobile device also to check for its compatibility and general outlook.

This way, you would be able to make sure your users are settled by the choice of theme that you make. 

SEO Friendliness

For your website to rank on search engines, the theme that you use is essential. If your site takes time to respond, it would reduce its overall ranking on search engines. 

Also, if it generates poorly coded HTML, the website’s performance would drastically drop in terms of ranking.

There is simply no essence for you to build a site that nobody would use which is you must choose one that is optimized for search engines. 

Reviews And Ratings

If you are getting your themes from a third party, you would find reviews on it.

However, if you’ve decided to use free WordPress themes, you can find the reviews below the download button.

You would find the reasons behind the rating of the theme and it would help you determine the theme’s quality. 

You are not the first to use that eye-catching theme and you wouldn’t be the last.

This is why you must check out other people’s comments and opinions about the themes to ensure that you are making the right choice. 


Updated Development

When you choose a theme and page builder, ensure that the developer would constantly update its features especially for security reasons.

With an updated version, your website can adjust to SEO trends and new technology stacks. This way, your website can function effectively without being prone to attacks from hackers. 

You can check for active developers by typing the theme name + “Github” into the Google search engine. When you scroll down, you will find the changelog and the date of the last update.

That means that there’s a team that is constantly working on it. 

Budget

There are different page builder plugins and they vary in terms of price.

You would have to consider your budget and the money you have available before choosing the right one.

The same applies to themes, although WordPress has free themes that you can use if you decide to use premium themes, then, you would have to spend more money. 

However, it is difficult to judge a theme or page builder according to the price which is why you must rely on the general outlook to get the best.

If you require unique features using a page builder or premium themes make sure to invest your money into it. 

My Top Recommendation

New WordPress themes are released daily, however, there are various reliable options of page builders you can choose from.

best wordpress theme

They include: 

  • Hello Elementor theme and Elementor theme builder 
  • Beaver builder 
  • Seed Prod
  • Themify builder 
  • The Divi Builder 


The Elementor theme builder is our first choice because it offers you more than 80 design elements that you can choose from.

With its templates that are ready to use, you can customize your content with ease.

It is highly responsive and constantly updated by the developers. 

Final Thoughts

Although the process of choosing a theme might seem stressful, you can breeze through it with the right information. We offer you the ultimate guide on how to choose a theme and page builder plugin.

With this article, we believe that you would be able to set up your WordPress account with ease and also reduce cases of further complications in the future. 

If you pay attention to all the factors, you would be able to set up your website in no time.

Also, our recommendations serve as a shortcut to help you achieve your goals quickly.

Lesson Four

What Are WordPress Plugins &
Which Ones Are Essential?

You must have heard the popular saying: “there’s a plugin for that”.

Truly, there is a plugin for whatever feature you seek to improve on your website. You just have to find the essential ones that you need.  

WordPress allows you to customise your website by providing functions and features that would help enhance your content.

If you would be able to achieve this, then you must know how to use plugins to your benefit. 

what is a wordpress plugin
Play Video

What Is A Plugin? 

A plugin is a piece of software that was structured to perform certain functions or include features in your WordPress website.

It is written in PHP programming language and works only on self-hosted websites. With ease, you can install a plugin to your website requiring no knowledge of code. 

With a plugin, you can extend the functionality of your website to make it unique. It includes options that help you configure and customise your website to fit into the needs of your audience, your preference and the goal of your site.

They work the same way apps function for your mobile phone. 

Plugins also allow you to improve a regular WordPress website to a blog, a membership site, a functioning online storefront that handles all the complex needs that your website has. 

Benefits Of WordPress Plugins 

There are various benefits of using WordPress plugins that you get to enjoy when you install them. They are necessary for you to create a smooth and user-friendly website that would hook your audience. 

Enhances User Experience 

To improve the ease of navigating your website, plugins are essential.

You want your users to be able to access the necessary information on your page with ease and that is what WordPress Plugins help you to achieve. 

Plugins help your audience to find content with ease and even leave their comments and opinions about it.

With plugins, your users can also subscribe for regular updates from your page and also contact the administrators of the site for more details. With the right plugins, you can achieve this with effectiveness. 

Includes Security Features 

Although WordPress comes with basic security features that would help safeguard your website, however, you need more than that.

Your website is a product of hard work and investment in terms of time and money. This is why you need the extra security that plugins can offer you. 

With plugins, you can set up alerts, user verifications, firewalls and spam blockers to ensure that your website is adequately secured.

Using protective plugins serve as a guarantee against security breaches that could ruin your website. 

Speeds Up Loading Time

You have to grab the attention of your audience within a short time, this is why the loading time of your website must be as short as possible.

If your website takes too long to load, it would discourage users from visiting your website which would mean bad business for you. 

Using the appropriate plugins will help you speed up the loading time by optimising images and reducing their sizes, also plugins help you in enabling cache.

With an enhanced loading time, you increase your website authority both on search engines and to your users. 

Improves Site Appearance 

The face of your website matters greatly in catching the attention of your users.

Some WordPress themes that are responsible for the appearance of your website rely on plugins to fully maximise their potential.

Some of these plugins are page builders.

By choosing the right plugin, you can include extra features to your websites like sliders, galleries, designer font and media players.

With plugins, you can make your site look better and more appealing to your users by integrating features that would aid navigation. 

Saves Time 

Plugins help you to get your site working in little or no time.

It does not require the rigorous process of understanding code nor do you need expertise in design when you can easily download plugins on WordPress.

All you have to do is install them to make your content development process quick and effective. 

With just a few clicks on your dashboard, you can do almost anything using WordPress plugins. It gives you access to features and functions that have been prepared for your usage beforehand.

You don’t have to worry about building anything from scratch because plugins have got you covered. 

Saves Money 

To develop an advanced website is normally costly. You would have to employ a web designer and developer to help you build it from scratch.

If you are a beginner, that means you would have to spend thousands just to publish your content online. 

WordPress as a platform uses its exceptional plugins to provide for all you need for your site.

You can get free plugins that would work effectively for your website. Even the premium ones are always below a few quid which is easily affordable.

This money is cheaper than what you would have to pay a web developer or designer to help create a website. 

Versatile

Plugins are important to your WordPress website because they offer you a wide range of features and functionality for any website of your choice.

They are software that offers you an increased level of flexibility to configure your page in whatever way. 

Plugins give you the freedom to either turn on some features or keep them off. You can use it to modify the website to match the design that you want to ensure that the entire site forms a coherent whole.

If you even want to remove a plugin, the option is available and easily accessible. 

Essential Plugins For Your WordPress Website 

For you to run a high-quality website on WordPress, certain plugins are necessary for you to have. Out of the various plugins available, these have distinguished themselves by offering exceptional functionality. 

  • Elementor: This plugin has both a paid and free version. It has a drag-drop editor that helps in designing your website pages. It helps you to actualise your design goals through the use of widgets. Elementor has advanced web creation features that would help you create unique websites. It reduces the number of plugins that you have to install by combining different features.
  • Hummingbird Pro: If you want to optimize the speed of your website, Hummingbird is a great plugin choice. It enables caching, improves execution time and helps in enabling text compression to make your website fast. Hummingbird scans your site and offers a quick fix to your website with just one click. You get higher speed scores, satisfied users and a better ranking on search engines by using Hummingbird.
  • Smush Pro: This plugin is an image compressor that helps you to resize your images so you would have a better loading speed. Smush would compress the size without reducing the image quality. In just one click, this plugin allows you to compress about 50 images at the same time. Also, it helps you detect the images that are slowing down your website speed. It can process all types of images and work on various sites.
  • Defender: Defender is a WordPress plugin that is responsible for keeping your website secure. With this plugin, all the areas of vulnerability of your website are covered and made invisible for attackers. It would replace your admin, camouflage your plugins and themes, change your permalinks and block access to PHP files.
  • Rank Math SEO: If you want to effectively optimise your website for search engines and even social media, Rank Math SEO is a plugin that you should get. It is a free plugin that helps in optimizing your content for an unlimited number of keywords. The setup process is easy. This plugin is integrated into both Google Search Console and Google Schema markup to offer you a wider range of functions.
  • Yoast Duplicate Post: With this free plugin in you can easily duplicate and clone posts that are alike without going through the trouble of building them from scratch. It speeds up your content creation process by allowing you to copy pages and posts on WordPress in one click. Yoast Duplicate Post opens you up to multiple possibilities that would enhance your work. It has over 3 million users who use it to save time.

 

Each of these plugins has its specific features and functions that would help your website look better, gain more audience and rank well on SERPs.

If you kickstart your website with them, you would position yourself well for your users to be able to access you with ease.

Final Thoughts 

WordPress is a popular platform that allows you to publish your content with ease.

For you to access the potential on WordPress, then you must install the appropriate plugins to extend the features of your website. 

Now you already know what a plugin is, the benefits and the essential ones that you need to install.

If you need more information on how to install plugins on your website, watch the video above. 

Lesson Five

make A small business website with WordPress

In this lesson, we will walk you through a hands-on guide on how to make a small business website.

And we decided to spice it with visuals – you will get to see what website design entails in a VIDEO!

And here is a little head’s up: this video is over 1 hour long. So, rest assured that you will find value here. And trust us, this lesson will be worth your time.

Building A WordPress Website
Play Video

Furthermore, we used a photography website as an example.

Regardless, you can adapt the steps to any niche of your interest.

Lastly, if you have not read the other lessons we have compiled on creating a website for your small business, you should.

Doing so will help you understand the terms and processes in this value-rich video.

That said, here are the lessons again:

Anyways,

Enough talk already;

Check the video containing the steps to build your first website.

Lesson Six

Launch A New Website And Build An Audience Fast

To ensure that your launching process goes smoothly, we have helped you to decode the various tips that would make you reach a larger audience and also run an excellent website.

The littlest details that you might want to overlook are the ones that can affect your website.

If you want your website to win the hearts of your audience and search engines, then you must do thorough preparation before it goes public.

SEO & Web Design
Play Video

10 Things To Check Before You
Launch A New Website

Proofread

Make sure that there are no errors on your website especially on the key pages that users visit. Proofread the content as many times as possible, you can even get a fresh eye to read it for you to make sure there are no mistakes on it.

The font size must be consistent, allow it to contain plenty of white space, also check the images, audio, and video files.

Everything should work fine and contain the appropriate labels. 

Test For Usability

This has to do with all the functional aspects of your website.

The usability of your site is important for SEO both to search engines and in gaining conversions. View the website from the user’s perspective to know the overall experience.

Ensure that important details are clear, accessible, and functional to enhance user experience.

Get your images optimized for speed, ensure that all the call-to-action is working properly. 

Remember The Contact Page 

A contact page is an important part to include in your website but it can also be easily overlooked by most owners.

With a contact page, your audience would trust you better because they can get across to you.

Make sure that there is a visible contact page on your website with correct details that would help your users reach you without complications. 

Test For Compatibility With Mobile Devices 

Google focuses on mobile-first indexing which makes mobile compatibility an important factor for ranking.

Make sure that your website is mobile-friendly and also easy to access on desktops and other devices.

The text on the phone should be an easy read on phones with consistent content on all devices that you use to access your site.

Google’s Mobile-Friendly Test can help you check for this feature on your website. 

Check For Browser Compatibility 

There are different versions of your website that vary based on the browser you use. Depending solely on only your browser would fail to achieve this goal.

Make sure you test your website on browsers such as Firefox, Chrome, and Safari.

Browsershots is a reliable free tool that helps open your site using different browsers from various locations. Afterward, this tool uploads the review to a server where you can access it. 

Run Compatibility Tests

It would be disastrous if the plugins on your website cannot interact properly with each other. Before launching, ensure that there are no glitches caused by a theme, plugin, or updates.

You can run a compatibility test using a tool like PHP Compatibility Checker. 

Double-Check URLs 

Most times, when a site is being moved from the staging area to production, you have to change all URLs.

You must check if all the URLs are correct using the live version of your website before you launch.

This way, your users would be directed to the right pages when on your website. 

Check Your HTML Sitemap 

Most developers include a sitemap in their SEO plugins that work automatically.

Make sure that there is a sitemap on the plugin and see if it is working properly.

Ensure it has all the necessary content before you launch a new website.

Handle The Legal Aspect 

Going through all the legal stuff for your website can be very boring.

However, if you don’t want to deal with legal issues after launching, you should handle everything properly.

Get the required licenses for plugins, images, fonts, and others.

Make sure there is a section for “Terms of Service” to break down your services in detail.

Other Legal stuff includes a cookie warning and a “Terms and Conditions’ section”. 

Remove Unwanted Plugins

It is possible that when you were building your website, you installed unnecessary plugins. You could have also seen that certain plugins affected the speed of your website.

Before you launch a new website, get rid of these plugins to make your page function effectively. 

After you’ve checked these on your website, You must arouse interest and get your audience anticipating your launch.

You are about to learn the best ways to go about announcing your launch.

Are you ready to find out? Let’s dive into it. 

Website Announcement Ideas
For Your Website Launch

As much as you want to run around announcing your website on mountaintops, you need to be strategic to be effective.

Get yourself on all the social media platforms and spread the news about your website to all your followers. 

Create hype around the website launch weeks before you go live. Since you’ve checked for possible errors, encourage those in your network to spread the news also.

Here are some ideas you can use; 

Create A Coming Soon Page

A coming soon page helps to get your audience interested and also to take a particular action.

It is a temporary landing page that announces a new product or service. With this page, your audience can get an idea of what your website would look like and they know what to expect.

Use this page to get them to sign up, then start building your email list. 

Contact Everyone In Your Database 

Send a direct message to everyone you have on your database.

Allow them to know the specific time when your site goes live. Highlight the peculiar features of your site that would interest your audience.

You can even include a gift for everyone that provides valuable feedback about your site.

Keep them hooked and engaged even before you launch out. 

Use A Social Media Tease 

Social media is another effective channel you can use to announce your site launch.

A teaser is an interesting way to excite your audience about the impending release. Get on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram to promote your website and make them aware of the launch.

It would help you get the word out quickly and reach a wider audience. 

Hire A Graphic Designer

Although you upload content for free on WordPress, investing in a graphic designer would go a long way in making your launching process effective.

Get a professional graphic designer to help you handle the visuals that you would upload on social media and also send to your database.

People resonate better with visual content and it would give your audience insight into your taste for branding. 

Maximise Social Ads And Organic Posts 

Social ads and organic posts would help you leverage your existing following and also increase your reach with your geographical target.

You can use social media to link people to your new site. If you don’t know much about social media marketing, it is best to leave the job for the professionals to handle.

Partner with agencies and freelancers that would help you use your budget minimally. 

Promote Your Site on LinkedIn 

Get your employees to create anticipation for their LinkedIn accounts.

You can get each employee to post weekly towards the time for the site launch.

This would help you get a wide range of people interested in your website and that is just what you need. 

Write An Announcement As A Blog Post

This is an important idea that you must use.

It is a juicy idea because it helps with your SEO rankings and also in publicising your company’s story to catch the attention of your audience.

Make sure that the key improvements and upgrades that come with your website are clearly stated for your users to know.

You should settle for a central space where all the information would be, it would make it easy for your customers to refer back to you when you spread the news. 

Involve Your Partners And Colleagues

Some of these people are actively involved in the creation process of your website, it is only cool that they get to check it out first.

If you organise a special party or gathering with them, you can get useful feedback about your website, and how it looks generally.

This way, they would help you identify possible problems that your users might have interfacing with your page.

After they’ve gone through it, you can launch your website. 

Conclusion 

Launching your website is the most exciting aspect of your web creation, however, it can be the stage where you get doubtful of a lot of decisions you make.

You just have to breathe in and breathe out, take all of the steps in this article, and get your website running with mouthwatering content.

You’ll see your audience rushing in quickly with these announcement ideas that we’ve given you. 

After you’ve taken your time to check the site, let it fly.

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