Skip to content

Building a Website for Your Service-Based Business

In today’s digital age, having a strong online presence is SUPER IMPORTANT for any service-based business.

Whether you’re a doula, a personal trainer or a web developer, a well-designed website can be the key to attracting and retaining clients.

However, the process of building a website CAN be daunting, especially if you’re unsure where to start.

This blog post will guide you through the essential steps, costs, and factors involved in creating a professional and effective website for your service-based business.

A website is MORE than just an online brochure; it’s a powerful tool that can help you establish credibility, reach a broader audience, and provide convenience to your customers.

It also saves a LOT of time.

Often, when a potential customer asks about my pricing and packages, I simply send them the link to my website where they can find all the details they need.

Here are just a few reasons WHY your service-based business needs a website:

  • Establishing an Online Presence: A website allows you to showcase your services and expertise to an audience at a global scale.
  • Building Credibility and Trust: A professional website with client testimonials and industry-based content can enhance your credibility.
  • Enhancing Customer Convenience and Accessibility: Clients can learn about your services, book appointments, and contact you at any time.
  • Increasing Reach and Visibility: With proper SEO (Search Engine Optimisation), your website can attract potential clients who are searching for services like yours (on places like Google).

Building a website involves several costs, and it’s important to budget for them to avoid surprises. Here’s a breakdown of the potential costs:

Your website needs a unique URL, known as a domain (example: yourbusinessname.com).

Registering your domain typically costs between £8 and £40 per year (I pay around £17 per year for ‘koiassist.com’).

Think of web hosting as the land where your website, the house, is built.

It can cost between £4 and £80 per month to rent this virtual land, depending on the provider and plan.

Factors to consider include customer service, speed, technical support, and the number of websites you want to host.

For instance, I pay about £300 per year to host multiple websites on SiteGround. Hosting a single website would be less expensive. I could go for a cheaper hosting company that charges much less but I needed the reliabilty of their technical support, speed and friendly user interface.

BE AWARE that many hosting providers offer significant discounts for the first year, making the initial cost quite low. However, be prepared for higher renewal rates once the discount period ends.

You can explore some of your options here:

The cost of website design and development can vary widely.

For a basic site, you might spend around £200, while a custom-designed site could cost £8,000 or more.

You have two main options:

  • DIY (Do It Yourself): There are many website builders, like Wix and Squarespace, that offer user-friendly interfaces and templates.

    These platforms can be cost-effective and allow you to create a site WITHOUT extensive technical knowledge.

    However, if you have no experience, it can be time-consuming and come with a steep learning curve.
  • Hire a Professional: If you prefer a tailored approach and have the budget, hiring a professional designer/developer is a great option. They can create a unique, high-quality website that aligns with your brand and business goals.

    This route is ideal for those who want to ensure their site is professionally polished and optimised for performance.

Choosing the right path depends on your budget, time, and technical skills.

If you’re unsure, starting with a website builder can be a good way to get your site up and running quickly, and you can always hire a professional later for upgrades and customisation.

I offer comprehensive packages that include both web content writing and website development. You can find detailed information about the services and pricing on my page here.

Regular maintenance and updates are crucial for keeping your website secure and up-to-date. Here are some tips:

  • Regular Updates: Keep your content fresh and relevant. Always check for outdated information, especially in regards to old pricing and services you no longer offer.
  • Security Checks: Regularly update your software and plugins to protect against cyber threats.
  • Performance Monitoring: Use tools to monitor site performance and fix any issues promptly.

For a simple service-based business website, regular technical maintenance isn’t usually a major concern.

However, updates can occasionally cause issues or even crash your site. Fortunately, my hosting plan includes technical support to handle such situations.

There have been instances when I couldn’t resolve technical issues on my own, especially when I used to use a different hosting provider than the current one.

In those cases, I had to hire a professional to fix the problems, which can cost anywhere from £80 to £400 per year.

Before you start building your website, it’s incredibly important to define your brand identity.

Your brand sets you apart from competitors and leaves a lasting impression. When you explore my website, you’ll see that the colours, fonts, and assets are consistently aligned.

Key elements of branding include:

  • Logo Design: A unique and professional logo is essential.
  • Colour Scheme: Choose colours that reflect your brand’s personality and appeal to your target audience.
  • Typography: Select fonts that are easy to read and match your brand’s style.
  • Overall Style and Tone: Ensure consistency in your brand’s visual and written communication across the website.

You can either do this yourself or hire a professional graphic designer. Personally, I chose to hire a professional, which saved me a lot of time and stress.

However, if you’re on a tight budget, you can learn the basics of branding yourself. As your business grows, you can invest in a professional rebrand later.

PLEASE NOTE that branding is more than just creating a logo and choosing colours. It’s also about defining your business’s personality, establishing its voice, and ensuring consistency across all customer touchpoints.

It involves crafting a compelling narrative that resonates with your audience and reflects your values and mission.

If you want to learn more about brand strategy, I highly recommend you follow Umm Asiyah on Instagram. She shares many valuable tips on branding strategy, especially as a faceless brand.

Your website should include key pages that provide visitors with ALL the necessary information about your services.

Here are the essential pages to consider:

  • Home Page: This is the first page visitors see. Include an engaging headline, an overview of your services, and a clear call-to-action (CTA).
  • About Us Page: Share your story, mission, and introduce your team (if you have). This helps build a personal connection with potential clients.
  • Services Page: Provide detailed descriptions of your services, highlighting benefits and unique selling points.
  • Contact Page: Make it easy for visitors to get in touch with you. Include a contact form, location, hours, and social media links.
  • Testimonials/Portfolio Page: Showcase positive feedback and past work from previous clients to build trust and credibility.

Before I even delve into designing the website, I make sure to have these pages written out in Google Docs. This allows me to organise my content and ensures that I have a clear structure to follow.

Once the content is complete, I can then focus on the design and layout of the website.

You can take inspiration from what your competitors are doing (but remember, never copy!).

I offer a basic content website package where, as a content marketer and writer, I handle this for you. You can view the package details here.

Besides the essential key pages, you want your website to have compelling content that attracts potential customers and keeps them engaged. This includes informative blog posts, case studies, testimonials, and interactive elements such as videos, podcast or quizzes.

High-quality content not only educates your audience but also builds trust and credibility, positioning your business as a valuable resource in your industry.

Here are some tips for creating compelling content:

  • Write for Your Target Audience: Understand who your clients are and tailor your content to their needs and preferences. If you’re a doula, your clients are mainly expecting mothers and families preparing for childbirth.

    They seek guidance, reassurance, and expertise in navigating pregnancy, childbirth, and early parenthood.

    Tailor your content to address their concerns, provide valuable information about prenatal care, childbirth techniques, and postpartum support. Offer insights, tips, and personal stories that resonate with their journey toward parenthood.
  • SEO Best Practices: Use relevant keywords, write descriptive meta tags, and include alt tags for images to improve your search engine ranking. This is organic way to increase your audience reach without having to spend on ads. (I’ll be touching on SEO on another blog post)
  • Original and High-Quality Content: Ensure your content is informative, engaging, and free of plagiarism.

When setting up your website, it’s essential to know the difference between website builders, domains, and hosting:

Website Builders: These platforms let you create and manage your website without needing coding skills. They offer templates and tools for designing your site.

Domains and Hosting: Your domain is your website’s address (like www.yourbusinesssite.com), while hosting is where your website’s files are stored online.

Key Considerations:

  • Ease of Use: Choose a builder with an easy-to-use interface for designing your site.
  • Customisation: Look for options to personalise templates to match your brand.
  • Features: Check for essential tools like e-commerce support (if you’re selling products) and SEO features.
  • Support: Access to customer service and tutorials can be helpful.
  • Scalability: Ensure the builder can grow with your business as you add content and features.

By considering these factors, you can choose a website builder that suits your service-based business needs and helps you create a professional online presence.

I chose WordPress to build this website because it’s highly customisable and versatile, making it one of the most popular platforms.

However, it does have a steep learning curve and requires some technical knowledge to navigate.

Alternatively, user-friendly options like Wix, Weebly, and Squarespace are popular choices for simpler setups (drag and drop approach).

Explore: 15 Best CMS Platforms to Start a Website in 2024

Building a website for your service-based business is a worthwhile investment that can drive growth and success.

By following these steps and considering the costs, branding, essential pages, and technical aspects, you can create a professional and effective online presence.

If you need assistance, feel free to reach out for a consultation!

I offer packages for website development at a good price tailored to your needs. And if you’re on a budget and just need some assistance with creating your first website, I also offer a flexible plan with my VA packages.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *