Last week we celebrated WEBSITE WEEK on our social channels. In case you missed it, here’s the recap!
MONDAY: WELCOME TO WEBSITE WEEK!!!
Our new website is finally LIVE! We’re celebrating the whole week with 5 days of content geared toward all things website design, development and strategy.
Stay tuned for tips and tricks for improving upon or starting your online presence.
A note from our Founder:
I want to thank our incredible team for pulling together [virtually, of course] to strategize, write, design, tweak, develop, tweak again, and write some more for this new version of our online storefront. Building websites is a labor of love, there are SO MANY moving parts that need to work together harmoniously to make sure it does its job. It takes a strong team to pull it off, and I am so grateful for ours!Maria Traino
Nathan, your dedication to efficiency and figuring out how to turn our visual ideas into practical solutions is exceptional. Thank you for your expertise and for being patient with the design team!
Loriah, thank you for your thoughtful input and watchful eye! The way your brain goes into overdrive to solve creative problems is a marvel to experience.
Megan, thank you for taking the SEO and alt-tags to the finish line and for making sure our copy was on-point!
Josiah, your photography always adds a level of elegance and sophistication to anything it touches.
And to our beloved clients, thank you for trusting us and giving Inspired Studio a reason to exist in the world… a reason to continue to do what we love creating something out of nothing [but an idea] every single day.
All my <3,
Welcome to our new virtual home!
TUESDAY: 7 Steps To Launch
Building websites is a labor of love, there are SO MANY moving parts that need to work together harmoniously to make sure it does its job. As the most visible and transparent representation of your business, your website design will affect the way customers view your company. And “perception is reality,” right? It’s important to have a website, yes, but it’s more important for your website to be effective. To be easy to navigate. To be clear and to-the-point.
Did you know there were many years we declined all website requests because we simply weren’t comfortable with putting something less-than QUALITY out into the world? Determined to succeed, we pooled our talents, brainstormed, and developed a step-by-step strategy for building a fast, effective, and beautifully branded website from the ground up. We use this strategy to keep website projects from dragging on for a year, for keeping revisions to a minimum, and for getting as much right as we can the first time.
Many-an-entrepreneur wants to jump right into the visuals when they think about creating a website (“I found this template I LOVE”) but we’re about to burst your bubble. You simply CAN NOT and SHOULD NOT start there!! That would be like breaking ground building a house without a blueprint. Nobody has time for that nonsense…
So if you’re ready to start building your [new] website, here are the seven steps you should take to get there:
- Map the content
- Create the content (write each page, gather and take photography, solidify brand guidelines, collect visual assets, etc.)
- Draw the Wireframes
- Graphically design the interface
- Test, tweak
WEDNESDAY: 4 Ways to Infuse Your Brand Throughout Your Website
When most people think about marketing, they think about the outward appearance of a business, like their social presence, advertising and of course, their website.
But what isn’t so surface-level is the brand BEHIND the marketing. It’s that subtle feeling and essence that is interwoven between it all. And when a brand is strong, it’s almost hard to pinpoint what makes it so special. It’s like watching a sunset… you sit and marvel at its beauty, it makes you feel amazing, you can’t wait to see another one… but you can’t pinpoint exactly what it is about it that makes it so special. AND… no two are alike.
Here are a few tips on how to infuse your brand throughout your website, giving readers and visitors an experience to enjoy and remember:
- Verbally: The tone of the copy of your website is crucial! When writing your website copy, be sure to imagine both your business’ personality as well as the identity of your reader. How do you want them to feel, how can your copy elicit those emotions? You’ll also want to make sure you explain who you help, how you help them, why you’re the best place to make that happen, and what they should do next. (Click here to learn more about writing the PERFECT unique selling proposition.)
- Visually: Colors, fonts, photography style and icons all come together to create a feeling and essence of your brand. Background images, textures, white space, size of typography are also part of the visuals.
- Interactively: Always, always, always put yourself in the shoes of your ideal customer/reader and remember that people are busy, distracted, and judgmental (not always in a mean, troll-like way… more in a “can I trust them?” primal sort of way). How can you make them happy in 3 clicks or less?
BONUS: Make sure the URL is simple, clear and easy to remember… while ALSO speaking to your business name or tagline. You can always have more than one, too!
THURSDAY: You Don’t Need a Web Designer
Yes, you read that right! Why would we even say that? Because it’s true. Look, there are MANY different ways to build a website: WordPress, SquareSpace, Wix, and Joomla to name a few. Whatever works best for your business and budget is what you should choose, we recommend doing your fair share of homework. (To learn more about how we build our sites, feel free to reach out.)
If you’re just starting out and need a site, like, yesterday, and you’re not ready to make a decent investment in it, here are the two things you SHOULD invest in to get further faster… beautifully!
- Invest in a good copy writer. Don’t do this yourself. We recommend finding someone with a sales/marketing background who understands the concept of writing web copy. Then, you’ll want to make sure you fill them in on your differentiation factors, your why, the benefits and solutions your products/services offer, and what actions you want people to take when they get to your site. You’ll want to consider how readers will want to feel when they’re hanging out in your virtual company.
- Invest in a good photographer. STOP using stock imagery… PLEASE. Get a good headshot. Have gorgeous lifestyle photos taken. Capture what makes you YOU. You’re a business, you want to make money (right?). So you’ve got to LOOK “money”—professional, trustworthy, and credible. The fastest way to do that is with photos that speak 1,000 words.
FRIDAY: 6 MUST-HAVEs to Include in Your Website Content
Creating a business website with purpose will ensure that it reaches its potential for success. Your online presence can help strangers get to know who you are, who you serve, and the solutions you bring allowing you to serve at an even greater scale. It serves as an information hub giving your business credibility, reliability, comfortability, and trustworthiness.
- Who you serve: Number one is NOT who you are. Make sure it’s not all ME! ME! ME!… readers should see THEMSELVES in your website.
- The benefits they receive: Number two is still NOT about you… it is still about THEM. Explain to your ideal audience what they can expect from your products and services. Clearly explain the benefits and solutions.
- Why you’re the best person/business for the job: Nowww it’s your turn! Now is your time to explain your credentials and credibility in a way that makes readers feel at ease and genuinely interested.
- Testimonials and social proof: Results can be in the form of kind words from happy customers, screenshots of social comments, google reviews, etc., or, it can be in the form of wow-factor statistics and historical validation.
- Clear call to action: Now what? Gently guide your reader toward what you want them to do next. Do more research? Book a discovery call? Watch your video? Think about the customer journey and be their guide.
- Easy-to-find contact information: Obvious, but it’s definitely a MUST. 😉
And that’s a wrap! We hope you found Website Week valuable!
We love working closely with our clients to create, design, and develop their websites. In honor of WEBSITE WEEK we developed a Website Starter Pack, just for you, available now for FREE! Inside the Website Starter Pack we’re giving you everything you need to hit the ground running on building a new website or refreshing an old one. Download now!