Many business owners with the realization they need a website just don’t know where to begin. They have questions like “What do I do first?”, “How do I know ……” these first several posts here on my site are to help you better understand were to start before diving into creating a website, no matter the size.

What's Your (website) size image for https://triciaisham.com

One question that comes up when speaking with new entrepreneurs and solopreneurs is “How much (content) do I need for a website?” Closely followed by “Do I really need to have that many pages? I’m not sure what to put on them!” These are really important to answer for those trying to wrap their heads around creating their first website.

So, do you really need to have a website that is four, five or even twenty pages? No, you need a website that contains at least the essentials about your business, shared in a way that your readers will relate to or connect with, how you can help them, a way to contact you or take advantage of your services and a privacy policy. More content on more pages does nothing for your business if it doesn’t offer information your visitor is looking for.

For small businesses and solopreneurs just starting out, it is more important to have a firm understanding of who you serve, how you serve them and a deeper understanding of why you serve them than it is to have a full-blown website with multiple pages.

The post First Questions for Website Design goes into a little more detail about the questions you should be able to answer before beginning designing your website, no matter how many pages it will be. The following explains what’s needed for a website to show your expertise.

How much do you need for a website?

Your website should include the essentials, but not go overboard and include every single detail about what you do or offer. You can showcase your offers on a one-page website or have a separate page for every offer if you feel details will help the visitor see clearly how you can help them overcome their problem.

Help them visualize

Your readers have a problem they are hoping you can solve. That’s why they are visiting your website. They’re hoping you have the solution and can at least point them down a path to help them overcome it. Sometimes they don’t consciously know they have a problem or pain point. You can use your website to gently help them visualize it, as well as visualizing how much better their life will be once they work with you or use your product. This can be accomplished in as little as four or five sentences, or take several paragraphs.

Share your services

You also need to share your services or products. Typically this is done with a snapshot of the product or icon representing the service followed by a short description.

The visitor won’t know exactly how you can help if you don’t tell them! Pretty obvious, I know, but something many people actually miss including on their websites. They concentrate on making their websites pretty but ignore sharing how they actually help, or forget to include their services, or specific steps for a visitor to take to work with them. Which takes us to the next important piece of a website.

Their Next Steps

Make it clear what you’d like your visitors to do after visiting your site. Do you want them to contact you, book a call or buy your product? A website can be a great tool for sharing what you do, who you help, how you help them and maybe even why you help them, but if you don’t also include the steps for them to take advantage of this help, your website is not being used as in a strategic manner. This can be achieved by a simple call to action, like “Book your appointment now” with a button linked to your calendar.

Building Trust

Regulations will go into effect on May 25, 2018 to further protect the personal information of visitors from the EU. You may have heard of this as GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation). There are now multiple plugins available to help make sure your website is GDPR compliant. GDPR is built around rights that individuals are granted regarding their personal data. There are plenty of places to read more (which I strongly suggest you do.)

Living up to these new standards is not only required if you do business with someone in the EU, but will build trust with your visitors everywhere. I’d suggest heading over to Suzanne Dibble’s post Don’t Be Afraid of the GDPR Wolf – What is GDPR? Read up on this and then craft a privacy policy, and maybe a terms of service or terms and conditions page, too. Perhaps even meeting with a lawyer to craft one appropriate to your business.

To better help you meet these requirements I include plugins to let visitors know your site may collect information about them as well as a page for your privacy policy in all of my packages along with a list of plugins that may collect personal information. The privacy policy and terms of service pages will appear as links your visitor can click on to learn more in the footer of your website.

Your Next Steps

So, the answer to the question I started this post with, “How much (content) do I need on my website?” An effective, strategic website doesn’t have to be multiple pages, it just needs to lead the visitor to the solution to their problem by clearly explaining who you serve, how you serve them and the steps they can take to be helped by you. If done right you will not only gain your visitor’s trust, you will gain clients as well, no matter how many pages of content you have.

Does this make you want to get your own website started? Check out my signature package, Just Get My Website Launched Now.