So you want a web site.

10 things you need to know...

How long's a piece of string?
The real cost
The real cost (2)
Can I have it by Monday?
Do it once, do it right
Be aware. Be very aware...
Do your homework
Get organised
What's in a name?
Where to from here?

Be aware. Be very aware...

Find out about this medium called the Web that you're planning to use. Spend time searching, and surfing, and sifting. The Web is the best source of information there is about the web. Find out what's possible, and what's not. Become familiar with the online success stories—and failures. And the reasons behind both results.

After your broad research into the Web and what it has to offer, focus more closely on your own business sector. Look carefully at your competitors' sites. Study sites of businesses that are similar to yours, both structurally and in size, but which offer a completely different range of products or services. View them as if you are a serious prospect. Examine your mindset from this point of view as you enter a site, and be aware of whether your wishes and needs are met by your experience on that site.

Make two lists: one of the sites which you like, and one of those you don't. Then analyse what it is about these sites which influences your decision. Is it the visual design? Relevance of the content? Download speed? Navigation—the ease of locating what you were looking for? Ability to contact the site's owners? These are just a few factors that influence the vistor's experience; the list is a long one.

Next: I'll do my homework, you do yours

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