I’m New to All This. Where do I Start?
If you’re new to developing an online presence for your business, things can seem seriously complicated… and they are. There’s essentially an unlimited amount of data and information you could take in and it all may become extremely confusing. At Wonder Web Development, our goal is to deconstruct and simplify this information and make the whole process as easy for you to understand as possible.
For clients who are completely new to promoting themselves and their businesses online, the first thing we would recommend is creating a website for your business or endeavor. This involves purchasing/registering a domain name, selecting a hosting plan, and then constructing the site and all related content.
Secondary would be setting up social media accounts. This can be done by yourself or by our team. It all depends on the type of budget your’re working with. If you feel you may be too overwhelmed to handle much from the start, we recommend you focus on the big three and decide which one will best be able to represent your brand to your target audience. Successful social media strategies can be time consuming and starting off with too many will just dilute the efforts you may put in.
Your next best option would be developing a marketing strategy depending on your time constraints, goals, and of course, your budget. This can become extremely complicated and can involve copy writing, SEO campaigns, lead generation, creation of physical and digital marketing material, and more.
If you think you’re ready to take your business to the next level and you need more questions answered, please feel free to contact us! We’re happy to help you along your journey.
What’s the Difference Between Website “Domain” and “Hosting”?
A example of a website domain is “WonderWebDevelopment.com“. This is the name/web address that you want people to see when they search for or go to your web page. Every computer connected to the Internet has a long string of unique numbers used to identify itself called an “IP address”. Without a domain name, you would need to remember the IP address in order to view a website.
Domain names are purchased using a “registrar” which acts like a phone book. When someone types in your domain name, behind the scenes your registrar will look up your domain for them and return your IP address back. Their computer will then know where to find your website.
Domain hosting is a service you pay for to host your website and all of it’s content. Hosting is essentially paying for space on a server where all of your content (articles, pictures, videos, etc.) is stored and backed up.
Anyone who wants to have a website will need both a registered domain name and hosting plan. Depending on the size and scope of your website, you may need a more extensive hosting plan which can adequately manage the amount of visitors and content you plan to display.
Most websites will only need basic hosting plans, however online storefronts and sites with large amounts of projected traffic will need to plan accordingly for the extra expense.
Are There Recurring Costs Involved with Owning a Website?
Yes! Many web design companies won’t mention recurring costs before starting your project. At Wonder Web Development, we believe being as open and honest from the start is the best way for our potential clients to understand what they’re up against. It makes everything easier for everyone involved.
At the absolute minimum, you’ll need annual web hosting and annual domain name registration. These expenses can often be lessened if multiple years are paid for in advance and we always recommend our clients take advantage of this option. We will always do our best to save you money in these areas because we don’t want your expenses to get our of hand.
Our domain management packages are a single-rate solution which include monthly hosting, domain name registration and scheduled maintenance to keep everything running as smooth as possible. We can also take care of these tasks on an hourly basis depending on your budget and personal skill levels. Monthly SEO campaigns are always recommended to drive more customers to your site, however this is not mandatory to continue operation of a website.
If you wish to handle this type of thing yourself, we’re happy to hand it off or teach you how to do it. Just don’t let it lapse or you and your business could suffer the consequences of neglect.
How Long Does it Typically Take to Finish a Website?
This can be a tough question to answer. Realistically, it all depends on how extensive your initial build is and how much original content must be created, written, or posted to the site in order to “complete” it.
Most standard website design projects can be completed within a week or two if there isn’t too much content creation involved. We happily offer time for proofreading as well as time for corrections and adjustments to be made to the site so it will be ready for presentation just the way you want it.
Wonder Web Development does offer expedited services, however this will come at an additional “day rate” charge instead of our usual package price and/or hourly charge. Your project will be placed above other projects and monthly work that we do for our other clients and will be completed as quickly as possible.
If you still have questions about your project and need more information, feel free to contact us for a more detailed breakdown of time and cost estimations.
This is My First Time Purchasing a Website. Will You Help Walk Me Through the Process?
Absolutely! Wonder Web Development offers packages to take care of all the initial setup and registration hassles. We can also walk you through the process, although this can often take more time than allowing us to handle it for you. Either way, the choice is yours and if you enjoy learning new skills, we happy to help you along the way.
When it comes to the actual building of the site and determining the type of site and content you’re looking for, we are happy to help you along with this process as well. Most of our initial build packages will come with enough one-on-one customer service to help answer all your questions and guide you to the site look and content you’re in need of.
Ultimately, our team members will help you decide which options best suit your needs and those which best fit your budget.
I Use a Social Media Account for My “Website”. Is That Enough?
Many small businesses start out using social media accounts as their main gateway to attract and engage with customers. There is nothing wrong with this, especially when first starting out, but it’s not the ideal or logical choice if you want to grow your brand.
We see this frequently with small family-owned businesses, independent contractors, freelancers, and sole proprietors. Again, there is nothing outright wrong with this option, however you are definitely holding yourself back by not having a site of your own.
First and foremost, by hosting your entire presence on someone else’s website, you are essentially building content for them and not for yourself. This goes for free site building tools hosted by companies like Weebly, Wix, and others. While they offer you a free domain and hosting (an attractive proposition for anyone with a low budget), you get what you pay for.
When you choose the cheaper option, you’re building up content for their site and are advertising for them directly on your site. This looks unprofessional and we recommend anyone who can afford to get away from sites like this do so as soon as their budget affords the opportunity. Hosting on sites like this may also seem enticing to begin with, however you will often end up paying double or triple the cost if you ever want a personalized domain name and hosting without ads. You will also be constrained by their build software and will often be forced to pay for things which are free to use elsewhere.
When you choose to have your own dedicated website, the sky is the limit. You can design the look and content however you want. It can be as simple or complex as you want, and you’re working to build content for yourself. You are not told which sizes of what type of content have to go in which areas. You get to decide. In addition, your promotional content isn’t held back or hidden on a dedicated site, like it often is without ad payment options on Facebook and Instagram.
We’ve also seen clients who purchased domain names but still have them direct to their Facebook account because they don’t understand just how important having a dedicated site really is. In reality, this option is, at best, a very short term solution. We would recommend this be done only as a temporary option while a website is being construed. It should never been seen as a long term or permanent solution.
Ultimately, social media accounts are fantastic promotional tools, and we recommend your business operates as many as your company can successfully manage and maintain, however they should not be seen as your “website”. That is not their purpose and businesses that wrongly put this faith in them are forever doomed to operate in an ever-constraining environment where your business is at the mercy of a giant corporation. This is not the way to bring your brand success.
I Already Have a Website. How Can I Tell if it Needs to be Updated or Rebuilt?
A website is a lot like a car. If you’ve had a website for a long time, you may be in need of an upgrade.
Depending on how the site was originally built, you may be using outdated code, themes, and/or plugins which can cause the site to function poorly or crash.
Older sites often used applications like Adobe Flash to display video content. While popular and functional in their time, many modern mobile devices, tablets, and desktops do not properly display this content. It can often appearing as a broken link or asking the visitor to download software in order to view your site. This can be a serious turnoff for potential clients, as your site may look unkempt or dysfunctional.
Aesthetically, an older site may be less than functional, may appear skewed or inaccessible on mobile devices, and may just look old and outdated. Finally, older sties may not be optimized for search engines and my lack many of the tools which could assist you in directing and tracking web traffic to your site.
If you think your site is suffering from the above mentioned issues, it may be time to update your site.
I Want to Sell Products on my Website. Do You Build eCommerce Websites?
Yes! Wonder Web Development does develop online storefronts. We can create complex storefronts for dedicated online retailers, as well as simple sections if you only have a few items you wish to sell.
Depending on the complexity of your store and product lines, setting up a store can take a considerable amount of time. We can set up the store and hand it off to you, or we can take care of setting up each item for sale and even assist you with product photography. It’s all up to you and all dependent on your budget and time constraints.
Can You Help Me get My Website to Show Up on Google?
Absolutely! Showing up on Google and other search engines is a relatively simple process. The hard part is getting your site to show up on the front page of Google. This can take a serious amount of time and effort depending on your location and the amount of related competition you have in your region.
It is important to note that your site may not show up on the front page, even with a serious amount of back end web work. This can be due to multiple factors, but many of these include the length of time competitors have been in business, their work on SEO (Search Engine Optimization), budge, and advertising; among other things.
If anyone or any company ever assures you that they can get your site to organically appear at the top of a search engine page, be skeptical. They may use underhanded “black hat” techniques to get the results, and they may come back to harm your business credibility in the long run. They may also simply be lying to you about their skills and abilities.
The best course of action to appear as close to the top of searches as possible is a combination of back end SEO work including a long term blog writing and link-building campaign, along with a long-term paid advertising campaign if budget permits. We offer these services and more.
I Don’t See Any Work Examples From My Industry. Do You Work With All Types of Businesses?
Yes we do! Just because you don’t see an example site or example project which matches your particular field doesn’t mean we haven’t worked on them in the past or that we can’t handle something new.
Wonder Web Development is open to take on projects of all shapes and sizes for all types of businesses. We love to work with small businesses of all sorts and can help market online only, as well as brick and mortar businesses.
We have worked with publishers, authors, entrepreneurs large and small, comedians, start-ups, fellow agencies, and more! We can even help set up crowd-funding campaigns on sites like Kickstarter and Indiegogo.
If you still have questions about your project and need more information, feel free to contact us!
I’m Not Local to Your Area. Can You Still Help Me?
Of course! Just because you’re not located within meeting distance doesn’t mean we can’t work together. That’s the beautiful part about the internet!
Wonder Web Development works with clients all over the United States. Even though we are based in Sparks, NV, this doesn’t stop us from working with whoever we wish. We may even be able to help you if you’re outside the US. The best way to find out is to ask!
If you are located in Reno, Sparks, Carson City, or surrounding areas, please take a look at our local assistance page for more information. We love helping our local community grow and we’d be honored to work with you.
Do We Own the Completed Website and all Related Content?
Absolutely! We’ve seen and heard about many horror stories of other companies holding sites and content hostage. This can happen frequently when a client has a disagreement with the current company they’re working with, and it can be devastating for any business owner.
Wonder Web Development will never hold your content hostage. You own everything created for you, and if you ever choose to terminate services with our company, we will happily assist you with necessary transfers and reregistration of domains and hosting. This has yet to happen and that’s how we intend to keep it, but if you need to move on, we’ll help however we can.
What Is Social Media Marketing?
Social media marketing (SMM) is a form of Internet marketing that utilizes social networking websites as a marketing tool. The goal of SMM is to produce content that users and followers will share with their social network to help a company increase brand exposure and broaden customer reach. Management of this type of marketing is referred to as Social Media Management.
One of the key components of SMM is social media optimization (SMO). Like search engine optimization, SMO is a strategy for drawing new and unique visitors to a website. SMO can be done two ways: adding social media links to content, such as RSS feeds and sharing buttons, or promoting activity through social media by updating statuses, tweets, blogging, and vlogging.
SMM helps a company get direct feedback from customers (and potential customers) while making the company seem more personable. The interactive parts of social media give customers the opportunity to ask questions or voice complaints and feel they are being heard. This aspect of SMM is called social customer relationship management, and it is very important when managing and marketing an online business.
Why do Businesses Need Online Marketing?
Think of it this way. A website is like a brick and mortar storefront. You can build a beautiful store, decorate it to look nice, and have all sorts of fantastic items to sell, but what’s going to happen if you don’t have any staff to manage it? How will people know you business exists? You’ll essentially have a business that you poor your heart and soul into with no street exposure and no customer traffic.
You could have the most beautiful site on the internet, but if you don’t develop a proper marketing strategy to get people there, you’re likely going to fail in the long term. Having a website does not ensure that anyone will ever go to it or locate it. That’s where SEO, targeted marketing campaigns and professional lead generation come in.
We’ve seen this too many times. Clients don’t budget for marketing or they fail to follow advice we give on the necessity of personal content creation. We will always advise our clients on the best ways for them to make a lasting impact on the web, but it’s up to them to listen and do what must be done. Whether they have us personally handle these tasks, or they wish to handle them on there own, the important thing is that they get done!
A lot of work can be accomplished by a client for no expense, however they will have to be willing to put in the time and effort to make this happen. Paid advertising with Google AdWords or with various social media outlets is not necessary, although strategic marketing efforts are always rewarding. Ultimately it all comes down to budget and the time a client has to devote to these endeavors themselves.
Do I Really Need a Blog on My Website?
In the wise words of a character on The Simpsons, “Short answer ‘yes’ with an ‘if,’ long answer ‘no’ with a ‘but.’” So let’s break this down. In all reality, you don’t “need” any particular section on a website in order to complete it or present it to the public. You could have a single page website that’s simply a picture of your business name and what you offer. We’ve seen it. It’s not recommended… AT ALL, but you can do it if you want.
Realistically, many sites we see (even nicely-designed modern sites) may not have a blog. Your website and business can still function perfectly fine without one. So no, you don’t need a blog if you have little interest in long term marketability and organic search engine results. Would we recommend your site have one? Yes! Absolutely! Without a doubt… for every business!
If you’re trying to build an online presence, there is not a business type we can think of which would not benefit from a blog in some way. Blogs not only allow readers to keep on related news and information, but a solid, steady blog writing campaign allows you to develop clout on the back end of the internet. A good campaign will be part of any successful SEO campaign and will establish your business as both an authority to your customers and to Google.
This will lead to higher organic rankings on search engines and it’s a lasting way to make your advertising dollars keep working for you long term. Additionally, this content will show potential customers that you are the company or individual they want to work with.
I’ve Heard the Term “SEO” Marketing. What Does it Mean?
Search engine optimization, or SEO, is the process of improving a website’s rank on search engines like Google, Bing, and Yahoo. Having your website show up higher than your competitors on these services naturally leads to more visitors and customers discovering your site.
While there are industry standard techniques used to help improve your rank, SEO techniques are subjective and can be thought of as an art form. Our SEO services are designed to provide the biggest impact at prices that make sense for small and large business alike.
So does my business need SEO services? Yes, in some form or another. Many people are surprised to learn SEO isn’t a single process that takes place. Google has thousands of different factors it weighs in on in order to rank your website. How fast your site loads, ease of use on mobile, how long people stay on your site, security features, and more are all taken into consideration by their algorithm.
On-page search engine optimization is almost always a good idea. This ensures your website is coded to correct standards and the content on your website is structured properly. This makes Google happy, as it allows them to find relevant data easier, and gives you a boost within their ranking system. A good SEO campaign will always include a targeted blog campaign in order to build up the amount of relevant content on your site.
Off-page search engine optimization is more complex and primarily involves something called “backlink” building. These are links on other websites pointing to your website. Getting authentic quality backlinks is very time consuming and difficult. Some agencies will try to “game” the system by creating fake backlinks. This technique is referred to as “black hat” link building, and Google is very good at figuring out if a backlink is fake. If you’re caught, you can drastically fall in ranking and be completely blacklisted from Google searches.
Remember, if it sounds too good to be true, it most likely is. Real results take serious time and effort.
I Have a Small Business. Can You Work Within My Budget?
Absolutely! Here at Wonder Web Development, we’re used to working with clients and budgets of all shapes and sizes. We especially love working with small businesses and area locals who are new to the business world. We love seeing the businesses we work with grow and succeed and we’re well-versed working with both clients big and small!
If you’re interested in hearing about what we have to offer or would like a quote, please feel free to contact our team!
I’ve Been Burned Before. Can I Really Put My Faith in Your Team?
We hear this from potential clients all too often, and unfortunately, it’s a frequent problem in the industry. Many business owners who don’t know enough about web building, marketing, and online presence development can blow hundreds or thousands of dollars and get shoddy products and lackluster returns for their money. Sometimes, shady developers may even hold content hostage or simply fail to deliver on promises.
At Wonder Web Development, we believe in developing solid relationships built on honesty and mutual respect. We see our clients as friends and we treat them as such. While we cannot do anything to convince you that our company won’t treat you the way you’ve been treated in the past, we offer only the opportunity to prove yourself wrong and see what a truly honest and reputable web development organization can do for you and your business.
If this is a large concern of yours and you’d like to speak to one of our team members personally about your past experiences, we’ll do our very best to change your perception of the industry and add value to your business. Please feel free to contact us. We’d love to hear from you!