There are websites and website designers that would have you believe that you can build a fully functional website DIY, or get one for about the same as an Ektorp sofa at Ikea. Yes, you can get a website for the price of a sofa or build one yourself, whether it would be fully functional is a matter of who you ask. The real key is the skill set of the person or company doing the build. Unless you have the core competencies of a digital marketing agency, you’re not going to be able to make that site do everything it needs to do for your business.
What does a digital marketing agency do? Essentially, this is a group of people who become the marketing department for a number of small or medium sized businesses that can’t do it in house. The full process of developing and launching a website can take a minimum of three months to deliver the finished function product to launch day. Let’s list it all out.
- Research: This is a number of different phases under one umbrella. It starts with a project summary, creating a persona for your business, goal setting, defining target audiences, refining SEO messaging, and assessing the competition.
- Scope: Outlines specific activities and timelines for the project, delineates tasks to be performed.
- Site Map Architecture: Wireframes are mockups of the pages that will exist showing the placement of elements and content. A sitemap shows the pages of the site and how they will work in relation to one another – like a flow chart.
- Visual Styling: The visual style will match your business’ branding, and connect your site to all the other methods you use to communicate with your clients and organization.
- Content Development: The process of developing rich media – photos, graphics, videos, slide shows, podcasts, and blog entries.
- Site Development, Testing, Soft Launch, and Launch: The site is tested on a private server to make sure all the different elements of the site are working together. Soft launch is where the new site is introduce gradually, sometimes to a select audience before the full launch. Launch is the day the site has its grand opening to the public.
- Maintenance: Update content, monitoring performance metrics, updating the backend, risk control and security is a daily job. If you put up a site and leave it for two years, it will be hopelessly out of date, and may even be a security risk to your organization and your clients.
So it’s time to think about your internet presence, and how you can’t do what you need to do on social media campaigns run by your cousin, and you don’t have time to learn how to build, operate, and maintain the kid of site that you need from scratch. This is where 4 Step Studios comes in. This is our core competency, and you can get back to your core competency. Call us today, and let’s get started!
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