Your company’s website sets you up to reach new customers while making your brand more credible and professional. It also allows you to clearly showcase your products and services on a platform you can fully customize to fit your business needs. And a well-designed website markets your products and services around the clock, always working to convert visitors into customers.
Whether your brand is well-established, just an idea, or somewhere in between, it’s never too early to start building a strong online presence. Lucky for you, it’s easier than ever to create a business website.
In this post, we’ll help you pick a domain name and establish your online presence in no time. Follow these seven simple steps to take your small business online, and gain inspiration from the real-life .xyz community members who successfully demonstrate each step.
Step 1: Determine the primary purpose of your website
Deciding on your website’s purpose first can help you consider the features that would be most beneficial to your small business. Clarity on your website’s primary purpose can lead to the design of an optimal website layout and user experience from the get-go, helping you to avoid inconvenient changes later.
If your company sells products that you want to make available to a broad audience online, your website’s primary purpose would likely be online sales. Take, for example, Dutch dog food brand Wooof.xyz. Wooof.xyz’s primary purpose appears to be online sales, based on the layout of their eCommerce website. They’ve centered the user experience around their neatly displayed dog food options with helpful product information, similar to a product brochure and order form. The company appears to have designed their website to encourage the browsing and purchasing of its dog food brand. Having a clear primary purpose of sales presumably led Wooof.xyz to design their website around the main actions they want to encourage their visitors to take – understanding and buying their product.
Perhaps your website’s primary purpose is to reach more customers for your service-based business. A great way to reach new potential customers is exposure to a greater audience online. A professional service-based website can be organized to offer the convenience and efficiency that potential online clients expect. Bangladesh-based household service booking platform Sheba.xyz is an example of a website with a service-based primary purpose. Their homepage is designed around a prominently placed search bar that visitors use to find and book household work like appliance repair, painting, and cleaning. The search bar is easy to use because it displays their popular categories as prompts when you click into it, helping visitors learn what the website has to offer. Sheba.xyz’s service gives visitors the option to filter by location so they can find workers in their local area. Including these options as part of the search bar helps their customers quickly find what they’re looking for, which helps Sheba.xyz encourage online bookings.
Your website’s purpose may be to build an audience through sharing entertaining content, and your marketing efforts may have the goal of increasing readership. Consider professional sommelier Sarah Tracey’s TheLushLife.xyz, an entertainment site centered around wine, as a website with a primary purpose that appears to be building an audience. Sarah’s homepage not only contains many different ways to see and browse her content, but also prominently invites visitors to take a short, fun, and informative quiz. In return for the quiz, she gains newsletter subscribers. Visitors are subscribed to the newsletter by entering their email in order to get the results of their quiz, which will show them what kind of wine they should “*actually* be drinking,” according to Sarah’s expertise. This technique trades value for value – a fun activity in return for subscriptions to her newsletter.
Determining your website’s primary purpose will help you to design your website to meet your business goals, and meet or even exceed your audience’s expectations.
Step 2: Choose a memorable domain name
Now that you’ve determined your website’s primary purpose, it’s a good time to select a memorable domain name. Your website is the online home for your business, making your domain name the home address. Just like physical real estate, it’s all about location, location, location. A memorable and fitting domain name can mean the difference between establishing an easily located online presence and getting lost in cyberspace.
When it comes to the length of your domain, shorter is generally better, because short domain names are easier to remember. Short domain names are also easier to fit on advertisements, business cards, packaging, and other marketing collateral. For these reasons, consider taking advantage of the availability of .xyz domain names. Award-winning Slovakian coffee roaster Black registered Black.xyz for their coffee shop’s website. This one-word domain fits cleanly on their marketing collateral and is easy for their customers to remember. Visitors of the coffee shop can later type Black.xyz into their browsers so they can easily find the shop’s website and purchase Black’s coffee beans to consume or to sell at their business.
Choosing a domain name that is on-brand can help to communicate the goal of your business to potential customers. Real estate property finder Property.xyz is an example of a domain name that identifies the service they offer. Co-founder Robert Jones explains, “We’re creating a property platform that works for everyone. All property types. All property categories from residential to commercial. All steps of the property process. We felt (the name) Property.xyz achieves this perfectly.” Property.xyz was able to secure a fitting one-word domain with .xyz. They now have a domain name that matches their industry and helps to promote the service they offer.
“The radio test” is an important tool to consider when choosing your domain name. The radio test checks if potential visitors can spell a domain name when they hear it said aloud. Try this out on your friends, family, and colleagues! When you verbally invite people to check out your website, it is extremely important that they can easily remember and know how to spell your domain in order to find your website. Starship.xyz, the autonomous robot delivery company created by the co-founders of Skype, is an example of a domain name that passes the radio test. Starship Technologies used their brand name paired with .xyz to achieve a short, memorable, and unique address that is easy to both remember and spell. Starship.xyz is bound to earn a lot of word-of-mouth marketing, due to the opportunity of being the first robot delivery solution on many United States college campuses. It is important for the brand’s domain to be easy to spell and remember, so students can quickly navigate to the website to use the service.
Once you have some contenders for a memorable domain name, you may also want to do some research to ensure the name you want to use is not already trademarked. You can do a search online to make sure another business in your vertical hasn’t already popularized it. Act swiftly, before someone else grabs the name you want!
Step 3: Make a good impression with a well-designed website
A well-designed website doesn’t need to be a complex undertaking. While you’re designing your website, think about your primary purpose, which can be supported by the colors, fonts, and imagery you choose. You’re aiming for an aesthetic that will resonate with your desired audience and communicate your brand. Fortunately, with the ease of website builder templates and options for quick website design, designing a website that looks good and works well is easier than ever. You can quickly build your website by choosing a style that matches the vibe of your brand.
If you’re part of a visually creative industry, consider a website design that is built to highlight your images. As the adage goes, pictures are worth a thousand words. High-quality imagery can be a useful way to effectively show your potential customers what you have to offer. Interior architecture and design agency AtelierInteriors.xyz aims to create “immersive, lived-in spaces full of character and depth” for their residential and commercial clients. The agency uses a sleek template to showcase its large portfolio of past projects. Through the template’s design, their interior images take up the majority of the website’s visual real estate so visitors can get a sense of the type of environments the agency is able to achieve.
Alternatively, if you’re a small business in a more somber industry, you may opt for authoritative and neutral tones. Forensic criminologist Rauscher.xyz uses color and media that fit the nature of his work. As a specialist in a photo and video forensics, his judgement is used in judicial evaluations. The colors of the website are primarily black with white text, and black and white photography are used throughout. The somber design seems like it would resonate well with those in law enforcement that expect to work with clinical companies.
If you’re part of the tech industry, giving your audience the feeling of being immersed in your technology can help to communicate your brand offerings. Software solutions company OneSky.xyz specializes in Unmanned Traffic Management (UTM) technology. Their website incorporates photography, illustration, and video throughout, fostering a user experience of visualizing the airspace perspective of an unmanned aircraft (i.e., a drone). OneSky.xyz utilizes media and iconography that communicate a modern aesthetic for their brand.
Use website visuals that align with your brand’s aesthetic to help you to effectively promote the services or products your brand offers.
Step 4: Include key content that sells your business to your audience
A well-designed website also needs convincing content to turn your visitors into customers. Start with succinctly telling users exactly what you do or what your company does through the use of an elevator pitch. This important information should be quick to read, and front and center on your website. Look to mobile application builder AppMaker.xyz’s website for an example. The website clearly states “Enabling mobile commerce for your Brand” on the homepage, so visitors can quickly understand what the company does and has to offer. The elevator pitch should catch the attention of those interested in your service, and inspire continued browsing of your website to learn more.
Another essential and easy-to-add content piece is a clear call to action (CTA), an element of your website that tells your audience what to do next. This is where knowing your website’s primary purpose really comes into play. Website creators often will feature a highly visible link with action text, that makes it easy to see and click right off the bat. AppMaker.xyz utilizes a brightly colored and prominent button that encourages visitors to “Get Started for Free.” Visitors don’t need to search around if they want to start now, and the design and position of the button encourage visitors to take action that appears to be AppMaker.xyz’s main goal.
Further, explain what your business has to offer your customers by sharing your value propositions on your website. A value proposition is a statement that tells a customer why they should choose your product or service. Value propositions list the direct benefits customers would receive by giving you their business. Sharing the value you can give to your visitors will help to persuade them to make a purchase. AppMaker.xyz lists six main value propositions on their homepage, including “acquire more users through App store discovery,” and “reduce cart abandonment,” making important benefits of using their service clear to their website visitors. Understanding the benefits can mean the difference between a potential and a paying customer.
An elevator pitch, clear CTAs, and your value propositions are a good place to start. Additional content you can use to effectively promote your business to your customers depends on the type of business you have.
Your business website needs to include a way for visitors to contact and follow you. The most popular paths of communication are contact forms, email addresses, and social media handles. Ensuring uniformity across multiple methods of communication helps customers to remember how to find you, and instils trust. This includes making your social media handles consistent if you can and having a custom email address, which can add credibility to your brand. Consistency makes it efficient and easy for potential customers to remember your handles. A custom email address using your domain will match the address of your website, which will confirm your connection to your website. Uniformity in the email address, social media handles, and website address can also verify to visitors that they are communicating with the owners of the website, and help them navigate back to your website for more information.
An email address that ends in the same domain as your website can help you to look more professional by verifying that the owner of the website and the owner of the email are the same person or company. Using your domain name to create custom, branded email addresses connects all of your company representatives and public contact emails with your website. Look to digital fitness platform Moxie.xyz and Hong Kong’s largest employee benefits platform, Amaz.xyz as examples. Both businesses show brand consistency and trustworthiness to their customers with the support emails they list on their websites. By using (support)@moxie.xyz and (info)@amaz.xyz, customers are assured that they are emailing a representative from those respective businesses.
Using a distinct domain name like .xyz can help you to gain uniformity across social media handles. Just as .xyz can make it easier to get your branded domain, using your domain in your handle can help you get the same handle across social media platforms. Moxie.xyz scored @moxie.xyz for Instagram and Facebook, @moxie_xyz for Twitter, and /moxie-xyz for LinkedIn, securing the common phrase “moxie” by including their domain ending in their social media handles. Amaz.xyz captured consistency across Facebook and Instagram with @amaz.xyz, and Linkedin with /amazxyz. Creating social media handles using their domain name helped Moxie.xyz and Amaz.xyz to get consistently branded handles, and helps their customers recognize the brands across platforms. The uniformity you can gain by using your domain in your social media handles can also make your website’s address stick in your customers’ minds.
Using your domain name across custom, branded email, and creating consistency with social media handles that incorporate your domain can increase brand recall and boost your business’s professionalism.
You can benefit from getting the word out about your website! Sharing your website is a key to generating traffic and increasing your brand awareness, both of which can aid in expanding your business’s presence online.
The versatility and influence of social media content makes it a popular way to reach an audience. Post relevant topics and links to your website on social media platforms to help spread your message and what you have to offer. Engage with others in your audience’s community in order to increase the visibility of your posts and updates. Writer and freelance journalist MelissaHung.xyz takes advantage of Twitter to share her talents. She regularly exhibits her work through smart and witty tweets, and engages with the writing community in thoughtful replies and retweets. She’s amassed a following interest in staying up-to-date with her work, which can help her to reach potential new clients online. Her Twitter bio links to her portfolio website, so visitors are able to learn all about her experience and potentially hire her for their next writing job.
You may also consider publishing blog content on your website. If you have time and funds to invest in content creation, a blog can develop a loyal following of readers who will return to your website for the next instalment. Discussions in the comments can generate even more engagement, as one remark can sometimes yield a larger conversation. Additionally, leaving genuine comments and interactions on other influential blogs in your market can get you noticed by blog authors and their readers. If you include a link to related and useful information that you have published on your blog, those authors and their readers can easily find their way to your website. You can take a look at other blogs in your niche market for inspiration on topics and writers that are engaging and helpful to users and community members. Inviting guest submissions on your blog or serving as a guest on another blog are methods of cross-promotion that can generate increased readership on both blogs, provided the interaction is genuine and you included a link to your website in your post.
Education company LearningOnline.xyz creates online learning solutions that have a social mission to help spread education to underserved communities. They included a blog on their website consisting of relevant articles such as “How to Use Grammar and Spell Checker Apps More Effectively” and “Making The World a Better Place Through Education.” A reader may add comments to spark conversation or even opt to pitch an article submission that would interest LearningOnline.xyz‘s community. These blog articles can help educate on a speciality topic, increase interest, and build motivation to return to the website again.
Printing your domain name on physical products is another way to promote your website. Promotional freebies such as T-shirts, hats, or pens, and any merchandise for sale in your online shop can help spread awareness and generate website traffic if they are printed with your domain name. If your domain is easy to remember and spell, people who use or wear your promotional items or merchandise that clearly advertise your domain name can inspire new visitors to your website.
Finding creative ways to print your domain name on the products you sell can be easy. Architecture and design blog MightyType.xyz added an online design shop, The Mighty Shop, to their website. The MightyType.xyz domain name is creatively incorporated into some of their graphic posters and colorful stickers available for purchase. Every buyer that displays the posters on their walls, or stickers on their laptops and other surfaces, is helping to spread awareness of the MightyType.xyz domain name to the people that surround them.
Awareness initiatives can increase your chances of exposure to your audience, and a growing audience is important for the growth and success of your small business.
Step 7: Evaluate your website’s progress
Along with your efforts to reach your business’s audience with your website, you can find ways to make improvements by analyzing the traffic to your website. Website analytics tools from popular search engines, hosting platforms, and web builders can provide your business with helpful reports. These reports can show you informative details, like how visitors reached your site, the most popular content on your site, and more.
Putting this information to use can help you to make improvements to your website. When you learn which of your posts were well-received, continue creating similar content. If your content is not successful or popular, try a different approach. The available tools can also determine if your website is appearing in your desired search engines or if you need to make an adjustment to improve discoverability. Use analytics to help you to continually meet the online needs of your customer base.
MuhammadAli.xyz is a Digital Marketing and Analytics professional who is passionate about creating “interesting projects that combine data in the fields of SEO and digital marketing.” His profession is centered around improving website performance. In an article on his blog, Muhammad writes “Google Tag Manager (GTM) is an excellent tool to streamline your analytics tags… When coupled with Google Analytics, it also allows you [to easily set up] events that you can use for tracking goals or conversions, without having to tinker with [your website’s] code.” He also provides tips for finding broken links on your website to improve your UX (user experience), which can help your website to make a good impression.
Andreea.xyz (Andreea Năstase) is a software developer based in Amsterdam with over a decade of experience in tech. In her article Analytics Alternatives for Small Projects, Andreea explains that “there are now over 60 privacy-minded competitors to Google Analytics you can choose from,” and that her blog post covers tools that are “simple, easy to install, and with sufficient degree of control.” Pick the tools that are right for you, so you can quickly get the information you need to make sure your website is achieving its primary purpose.
MehulShah.xyz (Mehul Shah) is a UX Designer at Microsoft Surface. He is passionate about “leveraging [his] technical background to break down challenging problems and create delightful, scalable user experiences.” In 2018 Mehul developed an analytics solution for an enterprise product “to better understand the user journey and user experience on the web.” If you need help with setup, and you have a plan to use the data to improve your website, one option is to hire someone with expertise in the field to help you.
You don’t need to be an engineer or a designer to use many of the easy analytics tools available today via your hosting company, web builder, or registrar. Using this information to your advantage can help you make evaluations and adjustments to your website that can help it fulfil both your company and your customers’ needs.
Whether you’ve launched your small business or you’re still in the design phase, you can quickly use any of these simple steps to get started or improve! Make the digital leap with confidence and begin today.
You can get started for BDT. 120 right now by taking advantage of .xyz’s 7th Anniversary Celebration. Join the community of small businesses and entrepreneurs using .xyz for their websites. The .xyz domain is a truly generic choice for any type of small business venturing online. Short, effective, and memorable domains ending in .xyz are readily available, which means your brand name or keyword choice could be yours immediately.
Register your .xyz now for BDT. 120
NB. This Article Is Written In collaboration with our friends at XYZ