Learn how to build a customized Startup Website
- 2 hours on-demand video
- 16 articles
- 1 downloadable resource
- Full lifetime access
- Access on mobile and TV
- Certificate of Completion
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- This is a comprehensive guide and all you need to know to start a website, have it up and running (before the end of the course), and learn how to use it too.
- Learn how to create a customised website that matches who you are or your brand, with content that reflect who you are and what you want to be known for, to promote your products, services, or even just beliefs
- Have basic internet skills to use Google and YouTube searches, take videos on your smartphone, word processing skill to be able to email, copy and paste information.
Are you wanting to have a website, but don't want to pay $1000's to get it up and running?
Worried about what to put on your website, if it matches your brand, or will you have to start again when you get professional help?
What if it doesn't work, and don't know what "Coding" is let alone how to do it?
How would you feel all the above were no longer an issue; would you have a website?
Well, now you can.
This course take you step by step through building content for your website with advice from professionals on what you can do now for yourself, and why you need to do it right from the start to save you time and money later on.
Then, we'll show you how to customize a website theme using templates already set up for you to copy and paste, or drag and drop, content onto your website without needing to do any coding.
Whether it is for a business, to promote your expertise and services, or even just a local community group, this course gives you an affordable option to turn your dreams into a reality.
Includes a certificate of completion. Professional development for:
BSBEBU501 Investigate and design e-business solutions
BSBMGT519 Incorporate digital solutions into plans and practices
BSBLDR503 Communicate with influence
This course does not include assessing or issuing the units, and only provides training. Upon completion of this course, you may choose to apply to an issuing Registered Training Organisation (RTO) directly to get formal skills recognition (of Prior Learning). While we do not have any affiliations with an RTO, we do have access to advice from qualified assessors who can advise you on the requirements and what you could provide as evidence as a result of this course.
- People looking to build their reputation in business, education and training, or their local community. Anyone who wants a cheap website that will work but have not created or had to adjust a website themselves. would you like to do it without having to learn how to write code? Or people that just want to know what is involved with setting up a website if they get someone to do it but only pay for what they need now.
Welcome, and congratulations for taking the first step to getting your website up and running... but hang on (you may say) ... why is registering your domain name not until section 5?!?!
Shouldn't we make sure we get the website name we want before someone else takes it?
Hmmm, let's have a think about things for a second... If it is such a great name, is it still be available? and does they name you selected appeal to you because it is related to what you do, not to you? How much research have you done on what your customer audience wants?
Sure, it is not that expensing to register a domain name, and many people do this first thing, only to have it sit there for months, then find out it's not what they want. In this introduction video, we go through they type of website that you can set up yourself that for most people, well, good enough to start, because you can't improve something that doesn't exist.
A website is just one part of your online presence. Although it does give you more credibility in your area of expertise, It can also do damage to your reputation. You can't hide behind a website anymore. People want to get to know you too and getting people to look at your website doesn't just happen because it's there.
If you build it, they don't come. There has been a lot of work put into all the websites in the video in this section, with the exception of the last website sample. that is one of my websites, and I here to tell you I put a very minimal effort into developing it. Did it look too out of place to you?
You may also have noticed that the WordPress website in the sample was nothing fancy, even though now over 30% of websites in the world use the WordPress platform. It is functional, just like the WordPress platform itself, so you could say it is an authentic reflection of the company's brand image. The website shown directly after WordPress in the video is a premium website hosting company, and also an example of what you can do to scale up a WordPress website now.
People don't walk past on their way to work, even if they know you. But these days, it is likely you are already doing what you need to do to get people to your website, and can save time, and money, simply by using social media.
We are not just talking about LinkedIn for business; last year for the first time, the number of businesses (42%) that used Facebook overtook the number of businesses that used LinkedIn.
By learning what is of interested to you target audience, before you start your website, you just have to be you on social media and people will find you. And the easiest way to do that is ask people about what they do. You have to build relationships and interact with people online too.
Many introverts find networking painfully and are more comfortable doing it online. However, if you do by some small miracle find yourself networking face-to-face with vampires sucking the life out of you, a website is still useful. When you want to get away, just say "have, have you seen my website?", you give them the name of your website, and can disappear in a cloud of dust as they whip out their mobile phone to look up what you do.
Let's face it, you are going to still have to meet people, but you can practice this online too. Even if it is just to identify who you don't want to see.
Author of the book "Pain-free Networking for introverts", Sally Eberhardt, has a whole chapter on online networking and says:
"Many introverts find a natural home in social media because we can network online and stay home in our comfort zone. You don’t have to verbally communicate – and we introverts are happy to write rather than speak.
Just remember that NOTHING builds rapport like actually meeting people.
One of the beauties of social media is that it’s a great way to maintain and develop the contacts you make with your face-to-face networking.
Having an online presence will also attract people to you – helping you to network and build connections online. It’s a great icebreaker when you go to an event, - you see someone who looks vaguely familiar, and work out that you are friends on Facebook, but this is the first time you have physically met … so cool :) "
Sally's tips for practicing networking on social (and IRL) include:
- Have the right mindset
- Have positive energy
- Know your ideal client (or ‘avatar’)
- Treat people just as you would face-to-face
- Stay in touch – remember and recognize
- And of course, be yourself!
Even if you get help building a website, you still have to know what to ask them to do. And as no one knows you better than you, it will be up to you to provide a web developer information about you. We will talk about this more in the next section, but for now, just know people will always prefer to get to know the real you. Not some description of you that you must try and live up to.
If you are creating a "company" website, you would get in a professional web designer, but what do they do? Here is an interview with on to explain why you would get one in, but if you are just setting up a business it's a different story.
We would all think to think we will sell a lot online, but if you build a website, you still have to work at getting customers to use it. They don't just come.
the main thing that causes problems with website functionality are all the "plug-ins" added to make the website look better. At the stage, think function over style. Web developers can give you both, but you will have to pay them to do it for you in most cases as they ave done a lot of research to find out what works (and what has not).
You about page should tell the story of who you are and what you are doing now. It is not the story of your life, just things relevant thay got you to what you are doing now. If people want to know your "why", they are interested in you, so you want them to interact with you.
The video attached is an example of my "why" I developed a course to train parents who were looking to return to work, or work from home, after taking time off to have children. As a single guy, never married, and with no kids, people that didn't know me question what inspired me to develop the course, forgetting that I have a Mum too.
While this video would be suitable for a website if the course was the only product available, it is more likely that you would use a video this specific on a "landing page" for a product/service/event. For now, your About Me/Us page is just a hook to get people interested in you. The why comes into it later.
Giving too much information, or going too deep into who you are, can also put people off, and you may look like you don't understand your market. Not a good thing if you are trying to put yourself up as having expertise in your field.
The first six things you put on your about page answer your target market's questions of what you do, so potential customers or investors can see if you have what investors want. Why they would want to buy into what you do is different for every investor/supporter, and a more personal (and individual) approach is needed.
Your about page should feel like you are having a conversation with someone when you meet them for the first time. This will also help you clear up "elevator pitch" when you meet people in real life.
Try writing something like this:
- Hi! I Am [name] - Your name(s), make a personal connection
- I’m from [Group] and we [unique value proposition] - Your elevator pitch, don't oversell yourself.
- The problem we’re solving is - Be specific, clear why it is an issue, and what happens if you don't solve the problem
- Our solution is - Keep it brief! just what you are going to do, not how you will do it. So the name of the process only, not the steps you will take in each process.
- This is a big opportunity because - What's in it for them, and the size of the market, but be realistic; they will ask questions and call BS.
- Our target market is - Show you've done your research, and DO NOT say "everyone", even if you could. The readers what they want, so will pick if you are just telling them what they want to hear. So who you would love to work with, not who you could "also" work with.
Once you have people hooked, they will start asking questions to see if you have a plan, and really do know your why, so have answers ready for the following:
- We'll acquire customers by...Use example that can be tracked by Pirate metrics that relate to: Acquisition, Activation, Retention, Referral and Revenue from customers
- Our key competition is...Threats from your SWOT. These are not just your opinion, there is a process to develop a SWOT.
- Our team is... Related to strengths from you SWOT if it is just you, and if you don't have a team, say who you would like to collaborate with.
- What we’ve done so far is...Trials, product development, but they are absolutely looking for an MVP to exist. An investor looks to make money at the time of purchase. Buying an idea that just may work is know as speculation, or a gamble to an investor. even angel investors.
- What we’ll do next is...The opportunities from your SWOT, and be ready to answer the question "if you had to do it tomorrow, what would you do?". If they are interested, and think you need the investor to do what you say, they may still invest, but will want a big chunk of the business in return.
- Currently we are seeking... The investor will already have a figure in their head after the last question. If they say no, ask why, and what they would pay, but best not to try and haggle if you are way over what they think your idea is worth. They may just not understand how they can make money out of it, or they may just not be in your target market. Take the feedback and they may suggest people that know that will help you.
If you get the question "do you have a website?", they will be looking for answers you gave to match the website. This builds trust at networking events, and people are more likely to give you referrals. Referral can be like birthday presents; the giver may not know/use a product themselves, but the giver with still want the receiver to be impressed when a person receive the gift. A website doesn't have to be fancy to be impressive, it just has to work and provide the information people want.
The way people research the needs of a target market have changed in the last year, particularly due to the free information provided in the Facebook insights program.
Even big business is using it, and despite all the privacy issues surrounding Facebook lately, it doesn't give information on individualpeople, and you need to have over 1000 people in an interest group (even in a small suburb) for data to show up. But when you do get data, it tells you the most popular pages the group of people like so you can identify potential competitor and se what they do.
You can also get further training on ho to use the insights program to see what ads have been successful for your competitor, and even install a "pixel" on your website that send a special add to people after they visit your website when you start selling products or services. For example, someone visits your landing page for an event on your website, then next time that person logs on to facebook they get an ad from you saying "hey, why didn't you sign up to my event?" This may sound a bit creepy to you, it does work to get sales. When you hear professional marketer talking about "stalking" on facebook, it is the Ad program doing the, not people.
You can of course follow people on Facebook like a traditional stalker would, but it is a very, very, inificent and outdated way of researching your target market. The insights program groups together a lot more information than you can get by stalking people, who are likely to end up blocking you and reporting you to facebook if you do anyway.
LinkedIn, as used in this video, does allow you to find individuals, however the search function is limited to business related interests, not personal or private interests.
This video shows you a way to find out what people in your target market are interested in to give you an idea of the type of content you may want to start putting on your website. You don't need to reinvent the wheel, even if want to sell wheels. Start with what is working.
Even seasoned professional make mistakes on camera, which is why many professional don't spend too much time (if any) watching themselves.
The only person that hasn't seen the way you look is you, everyone else see it all the time, so don't get too self-conscious. Get feedback to make sure it is not embarrassingly bad or damaging to your image, but the best feedback you can get may be "not bad". Just because someone say they wouldn't do it, doesn't mean they are you.
It only needs to be OK; doesn't have to be great, or fantastic If you change the way you act on camera, people will notice the difference when they meet you.
Live videos are a great way of showing the real you, and people want to see mistakes. Show you are just like them, and nobody is perfect, but you have to be comfortable doing it. You will umm and ahh when you are trying to think of stuff, but people also do this when they make stuff up, which is why people try to follow a script so they don't have to make stuff up.
But if you can't remember lines, you don't have to. Tell stories, without the names or fine details as proof, like you would to you family and friends, and have someone in mind you are talking to the camera (that you trust).
But most of all, just start doing it.
Here is a video of how someone who is very comfortable on camera does live videos with whatever equipment she has on her, usually just a mobile phone. After the first video, there are also some "what not to do" videos, that are recreations of things I saw seasoned professionals do when they started doing Facebook lives. However, the Pros don't get embarrassed by them, The show must go on, and I've had friends say "hey, I've done that too". Just have fun with it.
You've seen how professionals do it, but do you think they all start out that way?
Rather than showing you examples of professional outtakes, we have some examples of a persona were created to to promote a charity event.
I am not an actor, or been trained as one, se we modeled the behaviour of the Character in the videos on things we have seen people do on Facebook lives to make it seem realistic. We even created a fake Facebook fan page, and website landing page with a backstory for Befa Sheds. Befa as in "B" for Brett, and Shed as in a little barn in reference to the Jimmy Barnes as the persona was a 90's rockstar that was making a comeback.
What came across (in the videos examples in the collage) was all the insecurities similar to what may small business owners that have been around since the 90's (or before) were experiencing in the early days of Facebook Lives. It was also seen as an example of someone doing a facebook live that was "all about me" and not the audience. While is was meant to be light hearted satirical videos, many people, including close friends that were not in on the joke, found the videos painful to watch, Befa full of himself, and had no interest in what Befa was promoting.
Most successful business people have embarrassing TV experiences in their past, so it is all part of building your authority. With social media, it just means you get the experience out of the way earlier then you would have (even) a few years ago.
To make you videos more interesting, you can create videos (like Melissa did), use the magic wand icon down the bottom left of the screen when you go into do Facebook live. you can set them at the start before you go live, and also change them as you go. There are lots to choose, but they only work if you have a good internet connection.
As you may see from this video, they tend to only work on human faces, not pets. Yes, I've tried that too. :)
This video was filmed as part of a 10 minute session one day when I did a Facebook live talking about content marketing. I turned this 10 minutes of footage into 3 other short 1.5 to 3 minute videos which I posted over the next couple of weeks. More people saw the shorter posts as they had labels on them with specifically what I was talking about.
I also had people who watched one of the short videos go back to the videos from the previous week and watch the full 10 minute reply of the Facebook Live video.
Now you are comfortable on camera, I guess you want to know how to make the videos more "professional". In this Video, "The Presentation Coach" and Founder of The Point TV YouTube channel give you tips on the 4 things you need to do this.
The focus for professional video makers is normally on the editing and adding after-effect to give the videos a point of difference, but it is up to you to decide if this is going to give you a return on your investment. It would absolutely need to be part of a long term marketing plan to be worthwhile, however you can start stepping up to the next level and do some yourself.
You may get some appreciation of the skill involved in video production, and at least learn what to ask for when talking to professionals. Maybe what you can do is good enough for what you need.
The link below has a video that I edited using footage from my Holiday to Peru that was just taken on my Mobile phone (Samsung S7). You can edit videos on your mobile phone too. I used a desktop software program call Camtasia for this video, which is a simple to use program that many trainers I know use to learn what to do when starting out.
See what you think. Would you and your friends be happy to share it around? Maybe you don't like the content, but look at the quality a novice can produce.
What is SEO? The answer to this question is not what it is, although we do answer that in this section, it is what do you have to do now when you are just starting out. This section highlights good habits to get into, but also how you can use what you learn to build content and and make your website more user centric.
If you don't how to use design programs for brochure, or even app like Canva, you can still use Microsoft Word to do brochures and get a more modern look. There are 100's of templates you can choose from when creating a new document for the layout, and you can add background photos and filters under the text just like the design program let you.
You can save it as a PDF, and Wa-lah, you have your created your own downloadable eBook.
Many of the images used in promotional ads and websites use an online editing program call Canva, which is a website that has over 60,000 templates for you to add text to images, make up photo collages and banners for websites.
While this is not photo editing software (like Photoshop), inserting images into the templates with filters does away with the need to edit photos, and photo can be cropped and resized using windows photo viewer. Just make sure you have the resolution set on your camera on your phone for a higher resolution setting. For example, open the camera app and go into the camera setting, and select a picture size 16:9 ratio with a pixel size of 2560x1440. This will give you photo 3.7mb, which you can crop down to size to zoom in and it will not look washed out when you use it online.
Facebook Displays Banner photos at 820 pixels wide by 312 pixels tall on your Page on desktops, and 640 pixels wide by 360 pixels tall on smartphones, so rather than zooming in on a subject on you phone camera, you would be better off taking a wider shot and cropping the photo as the camera's digital zoom can make the photo fuzzy or look shaky (if you are not using a tripod).
Canva also has templates for multi page brochures and ebook that for can copy and paste text into from blogs or transcribed videos.
Many of the advertising for events or product promotions are now produced on Canva, so you don't need (to employ or be) a graphic designer.
You can spend hours wasting time on Canva being creative, however I suggest that you select a few template you like (up to 5), then just rotate images and change the colours (rotating between your 3 main brand colours). Add in a selection of 5 main images that relate to your brand, and you will have around 30 images to post across social media, so you can do one post each day without it looking like you are using the same ole stuff everyday.
If using free stock images, even websites such as well known sites Pixabay have had copyright issues where you may charged by the owner of the original intellectual property if it is stolen work. When using paid stock image sites, check that they have a "guarantee" that you are buying the rights to copy, not just the website does "their best" to make sure they got permission from the IP owner of the photo.
If you are getting images from Google, there are some images that allow you to use them for free, but it is a very limited and lower quality selection, although it may do for now to get started. Keyword search the type of image you want, and up the top of the browser window (under the search field you type in the keywords) click on the word "tools", then under the "usage rights" down arrow, there is a selection "Labeled for reuse with modification".
The safest way is to use the images you take yourself. Like videos, it comes down to the editing to make photos to look professional, and the more you take, the better you will get at getting usable photos for your content marketing.
While this can not be considered "advice" here as a suggestions on what "legals" your website needs from the get go, including explaining what The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) is in regards to EU law on data protection and privacy.
Shalini, from Legally Shalini, creates customised contracts for business that are up and running, and often has clients that wished they had things in place from the start. When you are starting out, you don't want to limit what customers you can get, but if you want to get in the game, you need to know what the rules are.
There are templates available, you can't just put up (or even copy) privacy policies and terms of website use and just put them up, you have to understand what it means you have to do to comply with your own policies. That's just part of good customer service.
You may also be doing things you don't have to, so get advice, and this video tells you 4 things you should get advice on at startup, or even just when your website goes live.
The WordPress Customizer allows users to modify and configure theme options, whilst also providing them with a live-preview of those changes. The Customizer was built to provide theme developers with a standard interface they could use when providing customisation options within their theme.
Even if the theme you’re using doesn’t provide any additional theme options, there are certain core features that the Customizer will allow you to change and live-preview with any theme. These include the Site Identity, Menus, Widgets, Static Front Page, and (since WordPress 4.7) Additional CSS.
Here is a quick run through to give you an idea of what changes you can make to your theme.
There has been a lot of talk and excitement in website circles about the new Gutenberg Editor for WordPress websites. What is it? It is their new standard visual editor that not only have all the user friendly drop-and-drag features included in web development tools such as Wix, but has extras and work in with your e-commerces plugins to make a scalable website.
It makes it even easier to adjust websites yourself, without using the widgets and plugins that slow down your website. Runs with the standard WordPress themes, so also work well on mobiles or with low quality internet connections.
Google analytics is a program that uses a code installed on your website and lets you track visits to your page. You will see spikes on specific pages when you run Facebook ads to drive traffic to your website landing pages, or even if you post into groups or make comments on social media. If you have your website under your name on you LinkedIn profile, people in groups may check out your website rather than your profile as LinkedIn tell people now when people click on their profile.
This is how you tell if your ads are working, even if you don't get sales, and may also tell you when you need to improve your website to get better conversion rates from your marketing.
Landing pages used to be just for people who could not afford a website, but now they are an essential part of the online sales process, and are integrated into the domain's e-commerce. They can be a trail page, used to build content, and in some cases replace a regular blog, but the one thing a landing page does is talk to a very specific market. Websites can be generic, but a landing page is not.