Inside the LIT Community, we often talk about the importance of an online presence as a business owner. And one essential way to increase your online presence is by creating a website. But to do that, you’ll need to learn how to build a website (or hire someone to do it for you).
Having a website makes it easier for people to find you, read about your services, and learn about your skills and expertise.
However, building a website is a daunting task for most of us – and for good reason! There are a lot of things to consider when starting out on that journey.
Luckily, Judit Sarkany recently visited our community and shared her knowledge as a web developer with us. In her talk on how to build a website for an online therapy business, she covered all the different factors that are important to keep in mind when building a website.
Judit has been designing and developing websites for over 5 years which makes her the perfect guest expert to speak about this topic. And she also created the LIT website (where you’re currently reading this blog!).
What is the purpose of your website?
The first thing to do when building a website is to ask yourself what is the purpose of your website.
Most of the time the purpose of a website is either to inform a target audience (i.e. people looking for a therapist), to build a community (like the LIT community), or to sell a product or a service.
So, you should get clear on the purpose of your website before you start building it.
Having an attractive website can also make you and your brand look a lot more trustworthy and professional.
Do you need a web developer?
When starting the website-building journey, the first question that usually comes up is: “Do I need a web developer to make my website happen?”
The answer to this is: You don’t need one, but it is probably best to have one.
Web developers are skilled in website development so they can do the job a lot faster and probably a lot better.
You can pay someone to do the work for you while you can focus on seeing clients and the other aspects of your business that you consider your “zone of genius.”
How to Build a Website: Two Essential Tools
When building a website, these are the two things you absolutely need:
1. A domain.
A domain is basically just a name you choose that connects to your website. If you are working internationally “.com” is probably the best ending for your domain, but if you only want clients from your own country then your own country’s ending would be best.
2. A hosting/server.
These website builders are often not a long-term solution, since they have ownership of everything you created. Only with WordPress you will have full independence and customizability. It is also important to note that the SEO prefers content through WordPress.
How to Build a Website on WordPress
So, you’ve decided to create your website through WordPress instead of one of the website builders listed above, and now you’re looking for tips on how to build a website on WordPress.
Here is a list of essential items you should include on your WordPress website or have built-in by your web developer:
● A downloaded theme (either free or premium)
● Plugins depending on your needs – e.g., a booking system, a calendar, or an e-commerce solution
● Pages (static elements of your website) i.e., your “About” page that doesn’t change very often
● Posts (dynamic elements of your website) i.e., your blog that you’ll keep updating or adding new posts to.
● Header – a navigation tool that shows all the different pages on your website
● Footer – a section along the bottom which usually includes contact information, additional links, etc.
● Sidebar, a section along the side that can show recommendations for new articles next to blog posts (among other uses).
● Widgets – website add-ons with many purposes, e.g., to connect your website to your social media.
What pages would be good to have as a therapist?
Since our community is for location-independent therapists, we thought it would be helpful to list some pages that are important to have as a therapist, coach, or counselor. This will give you a good idea on what to include when building your website.
☑ a “Home” page – showcasing a little bit of everything they can do through your website
☑ an “About” Page – some information about you and your background
☑ a “Service” Page – more detailed information about the therapy or counseling services you provide
☑ a “Booking” Page – to book an appointment
☑ Articles /Blog – to show your expertise. We have a whole blog article about why Copywriting as a therapist is so important.
☑ a “Contact” Page – ideally with a contact form instead of your email address listed
Other things to keep in mind
When building a website you want to …
- Ensure responsiveness. Make sure your website looks good on all different devices and runs smoothly
- Customize your theme to match your brand’s visual assets. Use your brand colors, fonts, and logo.
- Ensure security and maintenance on your website. Have a good hosting service to make sure your website stays secure and be sure to regularly update and back up your website.
- Set up Google Analytics. It will help you gain insight into what content works and what doesn’t.
- Be mindful of SEO (Search Engine Optimization. Knowing how to use SEO can potentially bring more traffic to your website and allow potential clients to find you more easily. But it’s a big topic, so if you need more help with SEO, check out our blog post here!
We hope this article was useful for helping you to take the next step with your website. Although we couldn’t include everything that Judit shared with us in one article, you can find her full talk in our replay library inside of the LIT Community, which is one of the many perks of becoming a member.
We invite experts like Judit into our community to talk about all things marketing, social media and websites. If you want to learn more about these topics and connect with other therapists, sign up for our newsletter to be the first to know when we open our doors for new members.
Do you need help building your website? Book a free call with Judit to find out what she can do for you. And if you’re interested in learning more about Judit, you can connect with her on her website, LinkedIn, or Facebook.
How has the whole website-building journey been for you? Did you hire someone to do the work for you or did you do it all by yourself? We would love to hear about your experience in the comments!