The main thing to keep in mind is what message you wish to communicate – keep it as basic and clear as possible. It might be two or three words or a short paragraph. But not much more. That's your mission statement – as it's known.
Work out who you want to talk to – for small SME's in a trade – it would involve a static image site, business cards and time enough to work at your real world presence (promotion and leafleting, deploying signage and advertising for example). Inhouse SEO is something every small organisation needs to consider seriously. If the budget allows for professional SEO services it could save significant amounts of money and staff time (see copy writing). Social networks are now very powerful marketing tools. I don't carry out regular SEO tasks as it is a specific skill set for those that keep up with an ever changing landscape created by search providers. I'll put the basics in place and do short training sessions if needed. The web software I use is geared for many levels of SEO development and implementation.
Budget – work out how much you have to spend on your initial investment and always think about future expenses when dealing with websites and online marketing. The costs are ongoing – once done then forgotten is not a plan! Clients who don't understand this need to find another provider.
Time! It's always the one that clients have most difficulty with during a project. I always make sure I set realistic schedules and delivery dates. Clients need to understand the implications of a design project for their normal working routine. Make space – it will be worth it!
Okay – just a few start up tips – as the site moves along and develops I shall be posting more in depth information about project management, post-development training and brand maintenance.
Make space – it will be worth it...