Startup Online – A Step by Step Guide to OutsourcingAuthor: Jamie | Filed under: General
Online Startups are on the rise as more people decide to take the plunge and work for themselves.
The opportunity to have more freedom over working patterns is a big draw for people who decide to start up online.
In this article, I’ll look at five main steps for beginners which explain what to look for in suppliers and questions you need to be asking.
- Domain name & hosting
The domain name is your website address. For example for this blog the domain name is www.searchblogger.co.uk
There are lots of big companies out there offering domain name and hosting packages. The term hosting refers to the location where your site files are stored so it’s visible online. It’s important to pick a reliable hosting company to ensure your website is live online as much of the time as possible.
When choosing your domain name, you have two main choices; go with a brand name such as searchblogger.co.uk or pick a descriptive domain i.e. smeonlinemarketingtips.co.uk
Tip: If you go to one company to register your domain and set up your hosting, make sure the domain name is registered with your details and not those of the company. This will help you retain ownership of your domain if there are any disagreements further down the line.
Recommended company: www.parrothosting.co.uk – Parrot Hosting provide a great personal service for small business owners with any domain/hosting questions.
- Web design & development
Once your domain name and hosting are in place you need to either design your own website or get someone to do it for you. It’s worth paying for professional design for your full-time online startup business so you make the right impression from day one.
You may just want a simple one page brochure website or perhaps something more complicated like an online database. See my 10 questions to ask a web designer to help you prepare.
Tip: Be clear about what you want before contacting a web designer. If you change your mind along the way you’ll end up paying a lot more for all the amendments.
Recommended company: www.8code.uk – a young and talented team of creative professionals with an impressive portfolio of small business websites.
As your web design is being worked on you should be thinking seriously about your content. Professionally written website text has the potential to make or break a startup business.
If you’re not comfortable writing or don’t know how to do it in a way that sells or helps your site get found in the search engines, then hire a copywriter. See my 10 questions to ask a copywriter for more information.
Tip: Ask your web designer if they can recommend a copywriter they’ve worked with before.
Recommended company: www.thewordwell.co.uk – they have a real passion for helping small businesses and startups. Nothing is too much trouble for them.
- Search engine optimisation/online marketing
Ideally, on-page search engine optimisation will have been done by your copywriter before launch. Off-page search engine optimisation is important too and involves getting links to your site from other relevant, high quality websites.
Tip: If you don’t want to fork out for every online marketing service for your startup, many companies offer training courses to provide the knowledge for you to build on yourself.
Recommended company: www.webdevelopmentandseo.co.uk – This site by Ardent delivers big business online marketing at small business prices.
If you don’t have any budget for outsourcing your startup online marketing then take a look the homepage and choose a category you want to learn more about.
*DISCLAIMER: These suppliers are recommended based on my own experiences but you should do your own research too. I can’t be held responsible for any loss or damages incurred financial or otherwise which may occur from using any of these companies. I am not an affiliate of any of the companies mentioned and received no cash incentive to recommend them.