Photo by Igor Miske on Unsplash
It seems like “build a website” has become the catch-all answer to developing an online presence. And while there are many advantages and benefits to setting up your own platform, what many seem to miss is that it’s more a matter of timing than anything else.
So, here are some thoughts to consider before rushing into creating your home on the web.
Here are some key pros and cons you should be aware of:
• You get to have complete control over your site’s messaging and design
• You can convert visitors into email subscribers and customers
• You can create a distraction-free environment for your content and products (no notification bell)
• If you don’t know how to code, chances are you will require the ongoing (and potentially expensive) help of a designer/developer
• There will be no traffic to your website upon launch, and it takes time to build
• Ongoing maintenance requires, time, effort, money, or some combination of the three
Do you have your niche and target audience figured out? Do you know what topics they’re interested in and where they hang out online? Your overall brand and messaging?
If not, setting up a website could be premature. What if you end up changing direction? What if you need to adjust or pivot? What if the clever domain you choose for yourself loses relevance over time?
Let’s say the time is right for your website. What platform do you even build on? Most companies with a horse in the race are trying to convince you that their solution is best.
Perhaps five years ago the answer was WordPress, but depending on what you’re building, you might be better served with Wix, ClickFunnels, or 10XPro these days.
This depends a lot more on the functionality you need versus ease of use. Ease of use alone should not be the determining factor, because what if the solution you choose isn’t scalable, and doesn’t have the built-in functionality you need to grow your platform later?
Okay, so websites are hard. Does that mean you should start on social media instead?
Honestly, social media is more saturated than ever. Everyone is seeking attention.
The trick here is to exercise some restraint and focus on one platform. It’s going to take some time to find your voice, so start the journey of publishing and curating as soon as possible, and as your message resonates, you will find your audience.
The other upside is that, if you build an engaged following on a social media platform, you’re going to have traffic to send to your website when you finally launch it.
More than ever, you have options when it comes to developing an online presence.
So, be smart and calculated about it. It might seem like a website would make you a “big shot,” but that’s not the case anymore.
At the same time, social media sites are known to change at the drop of a hat. Algorithms change. Accounts are banned or deleted. Some platforms even get shut down.
The key is to set yourself up for success, no matter the channel.