What you need to know...
...to design, build, host, maintain and promote your website.
Keep track of everything you need for a successful website with this website checklist.
You can request the complete report (absolutely free) by filling out the form.
Or feel free to use the condensed information on this page.
Your Domain Name should reflect what you have to say, what you have to sell and who your
A good domain name is short, easy to remember and easy to spell.
Website Design - What will it look like? How will it compare to your competitor's website?
It will need a consistent color scheme. It should be similar to your business
cards, stationary and promotional material.
Graphics - Pictures, illustrations, maps, charts, logos, flash presentations...
These add interest to the text on your page and can be used to draw attention.
But don't use too many on a page. Make sure your graphics are optimized for the
web, or your page will take longer to display.
Something visual to identify your website and company at a glance. When you see golden arches,
do you really need to read "McDonalds" to recognize the business?
How will visitors receive information on each web page? Text? Graphics? Video? Audio? Flash
presentations? Each of these media types can play a part on a web site - just
don't overdo it.
How will your visitors navigate to different pages?
What will they do on each page?
Each page should have a purpose, thereby enticing your reader to DO something.
Otherwise what purpose does the page serve? Do you want to inform your visitor?
Sell them a product or service? Offer an opinion? Entertain them? (Actually the
correct answer might be 'all of these'.)
How many pages? -
A general rule is - a separate page for each specific topic or category.
If you have a huge range of topics or if you want to cover separate topics, you
may need to consider multiple web sites. What you do not want (because search
engines will not like it) is a page with several different topics all jammed
What kinds of pages? -
While your website will be unique, there are some general pages you may want to include, such as:
Information (about us page, Our history page), feedback (email page), resource (Recommended sites page) and sales pages.
Contact Information - Should you give people your email? Phone? Address?
Use caution in how and where you provide these pieces of information. Identity
thieves, phishing schemers and spammers are always looking for new information
and some web sites give out more information than is necessary.
Do you need a calendar of events? Lists of products for sale? Secure sections
requiring a password? Do you need to store sensitive client information? How much security do
you need? Solutions can range from a text file to a proprietary database built
by a professional programmer (and many options in between.)
Are you selling Goods? Services? Information?
Do you need a shopping cart? Do you need a store?
If you aren't sure, it is usually best to start out small and expand only when
necessary. PayPal or E-Junkie are great places to begin. You'll need to provide
either your bank account or credit card information to them in order to begin.
Hosting - Where will your website files be hosted? How much will that cost?
Hosting costs run from free to several hundred dollars per month. So what is a
reasonable amount to pay for hosting your site? The answer, of course, is;
'It depends on what bells and whistles you require'.
Email accounts - Do you have an email account? You should have one using your domain name.
If you have other people or departments associated with your site who will need
to be contacted through emal, then they should have email accounts using your
domain also (Fred@MyDomain.com,
CustomerSupport@MyDomain.com, Billing@MyDomain.com, etc).
Disk Space - How much room do your web site files need? (including pictures, audio and video files)
Text takes almost no space at all. It's the larger files that add up quickly.
Bandwidth - How many people will look at how many pages/pictures/audio/video/downloads on your site in a month?
A popular video on your site can dramatically affect bandwith usage (and your
Search Engines - You need to follow the search engine rules so you'll come up when someone does a search.
Promotion - Additional steps to let people know about your website.
Website Evaluation - How well is your site doing? How does it compare to your competition?
Statistics - How many people are viewing your website? Where did they come from? What page(s) did they like? What ones did they NOT like?