How to Construct a Website for Your Online Business

How to Construct a Website for Your Online Business

Although you can make a living buying and selling full time on eBay, your website is likely the centerpiece of your online business. Fortunately, creating websites has become easier. You don’t have to know a line of HTML to create a functional web page.
Make it easy to find your business on the Internet. Choose a web address (also known as a URL, or URL) that’s easy to remember. You can purchase a short domain alias, such as www.company.com, to replace a longer alias such as www.internetprovider.com/~username/companyname/index.html. If the perfect dot-com (.com) name is not available, you can choose one of the newer domain suffixes such as .biz.
If the ideal domain name for your business is already in use, consider adding a short, easy-to-remember prefix or suffix to your existing business name. For example, if your company name is something common, like Housing Services, try using fairly well-known names like Housing.com and housingservices.com.
This way, the web address is still easy to remember and associate with your business. Or create an “online” name associated with your real name. The Art Institute of Chicago cannot use www.artinstitute.edu because it has been used by a group of art institutes to which it belongs. So the Art Institute of Chicago created the short acronym www.artic.edu – which is easy to remember.
It’s hard for people to remember spellings that differ from common English, like niteline.com – and people who just hear the name spoken won’t know how to write it or look up it correctly. Also avoid hyphens in your domain name, such as WBX-TV-Bozo@somestation.com, because again their placement is not clear.

Make your site rich with content
The script component of a website is what attracts visitors and keeps them coming back. The more useful information and compelling content you provide, the more traffic your site will receive. Use words, titles, or images that prompt visitors to interact with your site in some way. You can make your content persuasive in several ways:
>> Provide a call to action, like click here! Or buy now!
>> Explain how the reader benefits by clicking on a link and exploring your site. (“Visit our news and specials page to learn how to earn 500 Frequent Flyer Miles.”)
>> Briefly and succinctly state your work and mission.
>> Scan or use a digital camera to take pictures of your sale items (or services you provide) and post them on a webpage called Products.
Don’t forget the personal touch when communicating with your customers’ needs. Online shoppers can’t meet merchants face to face, so anything you can tell about yourself helps personalize the process and make your visitors feel comfortable.
For example, one of Lucky Boyd’s primary goals for his MyTexasMusic site is to encourage people to become members so that they are more likely to visit on a regular basis. His photos of music lovers personalize the site and remind visitors that they are members of a community of music lovers. Let Internet visitors know they are dealing with real people, not remote hardware and software.

Peeking at other companies’ websites to capture ideas and see how they handle similar issues is a normal practice. In cyberspace, you can visit a lot of businesses comparable to yours from the comfort of your home office, and the journey takes only minutes.

Create a graphic identity for your business
When you start your first web business, you have to convince customers that you are qualified and professional. One factor that helps build trust is the graphic identity. The site looks identifiable in a certain way. Using items consistently from page to page creates an identity that lends credibility to your business and helps viewers find what they’re looking for.