I get asked this a lot – yes you can! And here’s how:
Identify your aims. The best way to do this is to read my eBook – see the bottom of this page for free download details. It’s all in there, from discussions about why (and if) content optimisation is worth your time, to the more specific aspects of website development and page optimisation. It’s all in plain English and step by step. There is a guide to WordPress as a platform to build a website here.
Think about a blog. If you don’t want a blog, then really it’s probably easier to just get a static website from a designer, and if you want, hire someone (like me) to write the content as a one-off exercise. The three MatureMedia Guides that deal with blogs – Blogs For Professionals, Write Your Blog In Plain English, and Twenty Rules To Create Great Blog Posts – will explain most of what you need to know to decide whether a blog is a good fit for you, your firm and your clients. To be frank, for me the production of ongoing content is non-negotiable for any number of reasons, but of course it’s entirely up to you.
Decide on a mechanism. If you want to build your own website, as I did here, then send me a request and I’ll recommend some publications, websites and YouTube videos that will help. If you already have a website, the MatureMedia Guides will explain a lot about improving its content. Tell your website designer that you may want to edit the content, add some content, start a blog, or whatever changes seem appropriate. Ask what it is going to cost – but write the material yourself, or get some help, don’t rely on the designer unless they really understand the professional-client relationship and the culture of a professional firm.
Remember, if you are going to change the URL of any pages, ensure appropriate “redirects” are added.
If you need some help, we can look at your needs and make suggestions. You can also check out our services.
Copy my website
The website you are now on was built in the following manner, and you can duplicate the process if you like:
- All the content was written on Word and then transferred to pdf using Adobe Acrobat X Pro, an expensive program I already owned (but any pdf transfer program will do the job, including the free ones. OpenOffice will do nicely).
- I used designers to do the book covers and logo. But before you commit to big dollars, have a look at fiverr.com to order the book covers (five dollars each, believe it or not) and the logo (also five dollars). You can only lose $5!. I have been amazed at the results they have produced for other professionals. There have also been very good results with the website 99designs, which allows you to launch a “contest” for your design at competitive prices.
- I used WordPress to build the site (it’s a free download). I explain my affinity for this platform in WordPress As Your Professional Platform, but I was already very familiar with its architecture after the joint venture. However, it is easy to use once you become acquainted with the Dashboard. I also used a WordPress theme – Responsive Pro. This is a paid theme (check the current price), though there are thousands of free themes on the internet. I prefer a paid theme because they are still inexpensive and (generally) allow more customization.
- I bought the domain name and hosting from VentraIP. I have used them before, have found them reliable and helpful, and I’m happy to use a local website host.