Web Development for Small Business Owners: The Questions You Were Afraid to Ask, Answered!

Having a website has become crucial for small businesses in today’s digital era, as it allows you to establish an online presence and expand your reach to a broader audience. 

However, the technicalities of web development can be intimidating for many small business owners. They often find navigating complex web development terminology challenging, determining the best design and layout, and understanding the various features and functionalities that could enhance their business.  

This blog post addresses the questions that small business owners hesitate to ask regarding web development. Its goal is to provide practical guidance and advice to assist them in creating a successful online presence.

Save your small business thousands with these questions about affordable web design and development.

Having worked with the team on a UK website build, maintenance and reporting, as well as regular mangement of Google Adwords, and an international SEO project for a global website, I couldn’t recommend enough. I’d recommend over many of the larger agencies I’ve used over the years.

Gerry Johnstone, Service Express
What’s the Difference Between Web Development and Web Design?

Creating a website involves two interrelated processes: web development and web design. Web design primarily deals with a website’s aesthetic and visual elements, such as layout, colour schemes, typography, and imagery. Meanwhile, web development focuses on the technical aspects of building the website’s functional components using programming languages and software tools such as HTML, Javascript and CSS.

Key terms to understand in web design include user experience (UX) and user interface (UI) design. The essential concepts to grasp in web development are front-end development, back-end development, and full-stack development. In summary, web design pertains to the look and feel of a website, while web development involves technical coding and implementation.

What is a Web Development Agency?

A web development agency is a specialised company that provides website and web-based application creation and maintenance services. It comprises a team of professionals, including web developers and project managers, with expertise in various web development technologies and methodologies. 

The primary objective of a web development agency is to deliver high-quality web solutions tailored to meet their client’s specific requirements, ranging from a simple website to a complex web application. Engaging with a web development agency can yield multiple benefits, including access to a skilled and experienced team, cost-effectiveness, and the ability to concentrate on core business activities while delegating website development to the experts.

Why Do Some Marketing Agencies Offer Web Design?

Marketing agencies often offer small business website services to clients in order to provide a holistic approach to their client’s digital marketing needs. A website that aligns with a company’s branding and messaging is crucial in building a solid online presence. Marketing agencies with web design experience can ensure that the website’s design, layout, and content complement the overall marketing strategy. 

How Much Does It Cost to Develop a Website?

The cost of website design and development is highly variable and depends on multiple factors, such as website complexity, functionality, design, and the level of expertise of the web development team. An essential website may cost around £1000, while a more complex site with advanced features and functionalities could cost several thousands of pounds. 

Additional costs may include domain registration, hosting, and ongoing maintenance and updates. The price can also be influenced by project time frames, the technology used, and third-party integrations needed. To receive an accurate estimate, it is essential to communicate project requirements clearly with your chosen provider.

How Do I Make Sure My Website Is Mobile-Friendly?

A website that is mobile-friendly is created to provide an optimal viewing experience on mobile devices like smartphones and tablets, with content that is easily readable and accessible on smaller screens. 

To ensure your website is mobile-friendly, implement a responsive design that adapts to various screen sizes, optimise images to reduce loading times, and minimise using elements and integrations that aren’t supported on mobile devices. 

Other tips include:
– Using legible fonts.
– Ensuring buttons and links are big enough to be easily tapped.
– Streamlining navigation for mobile devices.

Regular testing on different mobile devices can help identify and fix any issues with mobile responsiveness.

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Can I Make My Own Website?

You can make your site, and there are hundreds of DIY website builders available online, such as Wix, Squarespace, and WordPress.com. These platforms typically offer easy-to-use drag-and-drop interfaces and templates, allowing users to create a website without coding experience. 

However, there are pros and cons to making your own website. Whilst the pros include cost savings, creative control, and flexibility. Cons can often mean limited functionality, fewer customisation options, and potential technical difficulties later on down the line as you want to grow.

It’s essential to consider the level of expertise needed and the time commitment required to create and maintain a professional and effective website that’s easy to use and SEO-friendly.

What is SEO, and is It Important?

Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) improves a website’s visibility and ranking in search engine results pages (SERPs). Small businesses need a strong SEO strategy to drive traffic and attract potential website customers. 

Optimising the website’s content, keywords, and structure can increase the chances of ranking higher in search results, leading to more clicks and conversions. To optimise a website for SEO, small businesses should research relevant keywords, optimise page titles and descriptions, create high-quality and relevant content, and build high-quality backlinks from other reputable websites.

Find out more about Search Engine Optimisation in our blog: What Is Search Engine Optimisation?

Is Web Development Essential for Small Businesses?

A well-developed website is essential for small businesses as it can establish an online presence, attract customers, and build credibility. It can showcase products or services, increase customer engagement and communication, and improve search engine rankings, but it doesn’t have to cost the earth. If you do your research on small business web design and the agencies that offer it, you can find a web design company that offers great value for money.

A professional-looking website can signal the business is reliable and legitimate, leading to increased trust and potential customer acquisition. Overall, web development is crucial for small businesses to compete in today’s digital landscape.

How Do I Create a Mini Business Website?

Several tips can be followed to create a simple yet effective mini-business website. 
First, define the website’s purpose and target audience. Then, choose a domain name and web hosting service. Select a website builder or platform that fits your budget and needs, such as Wix, Squarespace, or WordPress. 

Use a clean, easy-to-navigate design, and create high-quality, relevant content communicating your business’s value proposition. Optimise the website for search engines by including relevant keywords, meta descriptions, and alt tags. Include clear calls to action and regularly update and maintain the website. 

Alternatively, speak to a web designer who’ll be able to build your website for you. This is often cheaper and less hassle in the long run.

A well-designed and functional website is essential for small businesses to establish an online presence, attract customers, and compete in the digital landscape. By following the tips and suggestions provided, small companies can create a simple yet powerful website that showcases their products or services, builds credibility and trust, and provides a platform for customer engagement. 

The availability of website builders and tools makes it easier than ever for small businesses to create their own websites without requiring extensive technical knowledge or resources. Investing time and effort in website development and maintenance can lead to increased visibility, customer acquisition, and business growth. That being said, working with experts always pays dividends in the long run, and if your website is going to be your shop front, it’s important that it looks the part and plays the part so that your till continues to ring!

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Jodie Darnell
Account Executive

I have a passion for small businesses. I believe every business has the potential to succeed online, and I’m dedicated to helping owners and startups leverage digital marketing to grow their businesses.

Specialises in: Social Media, PPC and Content

Jodie Darnell
Account Executive

I have a passion for small businesses. I believe every business has the potential to succeed online, and I’m dedicated to helping owners and startups leverage digital marketing to grow their businesses.

Specialises in: Social Media, PPC and Content

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