Creating a website for the first time can be very challenging. You’re embarking on a new mission, and you’ll likely experience some pitfalls along the way. As with everything, you can expect a learning curve, and depending on the platform you use, that learning curve can range from very low to very high. You’re especially prone to errors if you rush through the process.
Creating a website from scratch is a delicate process, and one you should dedicate a fair amount of time and patience to. However, with a little preparation and research, you can avoid some of the more common mistakes that new website owners make. Some of these mistakes, as you’ll notice, are fairly simple and could easily be avoided. Here are three of them:
Not Paying Attention to SEO.
There are dozens of SEO mistakes you should avoid, but the biggest SEO mistake is not paying attention to it at all. Some webmasters falsely believe that if they build a great website, the traffic will come. Similarly, they believe that if they write copy that aligns with their goals, the SEO takes care of itself. The truth is, SEO is somewhat of a science. Before you even begin, you need to do extensive keyword research to determine which keywords are actually popular to search engines. With the right keyword tools, you can gather a lengthy list of viable keywords fairly quickly.
Once you have a handful of targeted keywords, it’s time to start sprinkling them (in a natural way) throughout your site. If you use a platform like WordPress, this is fairly straightford when install SEO plugins like Yoast. You should be using keywords in your titles, meta tags, alt tags, headers, and more. If you aren’t familiar with SEO, you should take an online course, buy an SEO book, or hire an SEO professional to work on your site.
Not Choosing the Right Hosting
Believe it or not, there’s a wrong way and a right way to go about hosting. After all, there are several hosting options to choose from. Two of the main hosting options are shared hosting and VPS hosting, and it’s important to note the differences between them. Both are solid options, but it all depends on what you’re looking for as a website owner.
Shared hosting is the cheaper of the two options, and with this choice, you share a single server with many other websites. Think of it like having a slice of a large cake. With shared hosting, you’re responsible for taking care of your own maintenance, security, etc, and you have less bandwidth to work with. However, this could be a great option for people who don’t have an audience yet, are on a budget, and don’t require many resources.
With a VPS (virtual private server), you essentially get the entire cake. There are fewer restrictions with VPS hosting, and more room to grow. With a VPS, a certain amount of resources has been dedicated exclusively to you, so you’re less likely to experience a website crash if, say, you get an influx of traffic due to an online sale. This would be ideal for a business that is expecting quite a decent amount of traffic, and can’t afford to risk any downtime.
Not Paying Attention to the Blog
Just because you’ve optimized your website for search engines doesn’t mean you don’t need a blog. In fact, blogging is one of the best ways for you to rank higher in search engines. Not only is every blog post an opportunity for you to target keywords, but it also gives Google more to “crawl.” When it comes to SEO, think of blogging as fuel.
Not only is it good for SEO, but it also provides a foundation for all your other marketing channels. For instance, when you create a blog, you’re able to create better material for your social media and email marketing, too. In this manner, content begins with a blog and filters down the pipeline.
And lastly, blogging gives your website a voice. This is where you can truly show off your personality and let your brand shine. It’s how you create a dialogue between your website and your consumers. And you never know; with a consistent, quality blog, you may even land guest blogging opportunities on other sites, where you can spread your expertise or thoughts in your niche or industry, and get traffic back to your blog.
Still not convinced? Take a look at these blogging statistics that demonstrate exactly how much blogging makes a difference.