Website Development – Where Do I Start?

We have two pitiful websites for our company that need to revitialise. Starting from scratch is the only option as they are so bad.

Ideally they cater to market groups, trade & architectual/specifier markets. An online ordering component is required. Product and information search component. There are thousands of products of various technical information that needs to be provided.

Where do i start? What resources can I use to gather what I need? How do I present this to management? How can I cost this out?

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Jay’s Answer: The direction you take depends on the resources you have (money, time, web development, etc.). Management will care about the ROI of the effort. So I suggest starting by accumulating analytics about your traffic today (Google Analytics is one such free service). That’ll help to inform your results (what % of your visitors convert to customers, etc.).

If you plan to regularly update the site yourself, you’d probably want to investigate CMS (Content Management Systems). Basically you hire someone to build the framework of the website (including graphics, color scheme, layout, etc.), and you’re responsible for filling the website’s content. CMS systems (Joomla, etc.) have many add-on modules that can no doubt address your needs. The software itself is free, but there are technical trade offs to using one CMS system over another.

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