Website creation

Ten top tips for a smooth website creation

(Giraffe Design testimonial)

business support

Ten top tips for your website creation

A business website is your marketing vehicle. It shows people what you offer, so here are Ten top tips for a smooth website creation.

Your website is the main media asset that you own and control, so you want it to showcase you.

Three people smiling with a You Are the Media banner behind them. The photo of Sarah, founder of Triple Yellow Ltd and Stuart and Nate, founders of Giraffe Design was to celebrate Stuart and Nate completing Sarah's website creation

This photo above, taken at a recent You Are the Media event, is of me with Stewart and Nate from Giraffe Design the two people who created our website  Below is my testimonial of working with them and my top tips for ensuring that a website creation project goes smoothly.

1.  Look at other websites to see what you like, and what you don’t

Think about the websites you go on regularly. What do you like about them?  What keeps you coming back to them? 

Consider a recent search you did on Google. What did you type in and what results came up? Did clicking on those top result websites deliver what you were looking for?

Doing this preparation work will help get your mind into the right place before finding a website designer.

2.  Take the time to get to know, like and trust your website designer

I knew that I wanted a Dorset-based website designer, as my business is all about supporting Dorset-based businesses. 

And although I had got to know Stewart from the YATM Friday morning sea swimming group (more about that another time!) it was a different kettle of fish contracting him to design my website.  

So, having looked at other options I checked out Giraffe Design’s own website. I went through their portfolio of created websites to see if any were similar to what I was imagining and looked at their Google Reviews.  All very positive.

Stewart also offered a no-obligation meeting over coffee to learn more about my company and understand my website requirements better. 

He asked questions about elements I hadn’t thought about and we explored what could be achieved in scale and timeline.  I came away informed, reassured and ready to engage the company and create a website brief.

3.  Be clear on what you want your website to be and do

The website brief covered a number of key questions to help me get the best possible website:

  • Company description – how do you describe your company in a way that attracts clients?
  • Existing website – do you have one?
  • Your brand values (this helps to inform website colours and the tone of the website)
  • Any images you have already
  • Target audience – who are your target audience and what is their primary goal coming onto your website?
  • What is your target audience typing into Google to find you? (this will help you write content that uses specific search terms)
  • What is the journey you want the people visiting the website to go on (this will help you define sections and tabs on the website)
  • Your overall website project goals (this will help define what you need, from a basic WordPress site through to an all-singing all-dancing e-commerce platform)

This website brief-writing process, with timely questions from Stewart, helped me clarify my website thoughts and also gave him a firmer idea of the scope of work.  He was able to create a plan and timetable and pricing figure that was most agreeable. 

Website creation - from website plan to website reality. A picture of ideas at the top that translated into a website below.
From website plan to website reality

4.  Website creation content and logo – hand over those tasks you simply can’t do

I am a professional bid writer and writing comes easy to me, so I wrote the content for my website.   

My company logo, however, was another pain point altogether and one which I happily handed over to Stewart. I constrained him only with a) no, I won’t change my company name and b) yes, I really like yellow.  

Stewart understands how important logos are for a company and how a logo can be used throughout a website, whether explicitly at the top of every page or hidden in the design of buttons and images. 

We explored the use of characters and imagery but nothing was working, until a couple of weeks later genius struck Stewart overnight and the Triple Yellow logo was born.  As soon as I saw it I knew it was the one – strong, simple and demonstrating how Triple Yellow ‘fast forwards’ ambitious small businesses.  And it contained yellow.

5.  Get professional branding photos

Stewart’s opinion of my existing images confirmed my belief that I needed some professional branding photos taken.  As I am always keen to use local Dorset suppliers Giraffe Design arranged for experienced photographer Jennie Franklin to come to my workplace and take some commercial photos. Jennie fitted me in on the way to a wedding which meant a) it was a great price and b) she had her full range of cameras to use on me!  I was so pleased with the results.

Professional photographs further enhance the look and feel you want to get out of your website.

6.  Stick to the website creation project plan

At any one time a good website designer is working on a number of projects, which they all have to schedule to maximise their resources.  Stewart set a clear timeline for the following agreed tasks: • Design web visuals • Set up WordPress and build all necessary functionality • Set up main pages • Include Blog • Add site content (based on 16 pages Plus blog section) • Add imagery supplied / help source if required • Make a demo available to view and give feedback • Amend website once received client feedback • Test new website and then go live

It was up to me to then keep my end of the bargain, providing the required content around which the pages would be designed, at the right time.  I didn’t always do this, and received a firm email from Stewart a couple of time reminding me why it was important, which made me feel very guilty.

My takeaway from this is you need to schedule time in your own work diary to provide the assets for the website designer, whether that is content, photos, webpage structure or whatever else you have promised to provide.    

7.   Your website is always a work in progress

Once I got going creating the website content I got excited about further potential elements, for example;

  • Wouldn’t it be great to have some drone footage of Dorset showing on the Home Page
  • A Booking call calendar scheduler would be a good idea
  • Perhaps I should have a link to my online training course (that I haven’t finished yet) is required

Stewart kindly and calmly reminded me that starting simple is the best approach, like building the solid foundations of a house before hanging the wallpaper …

Of course, he could have incorporated all these extra ideas outside the scope of existing work and charged me for it. But he didn’t, because he is a wise Giraffe.

8.  You don’t need technical know-how. Use someone who does.

I had set up originally with a website hosting platform, but the domain was with another – TSO Host – whereupon any connection to the website name stopped working. TSO Host kept explaining it was something in (or not in) my DNS register that was causing the problem, but I had no idea what that even was, let alone how to fix it.

Stewart took on this task and liaised with TSO Host to take back control and access to the domain name.

Nate is the site framework and mobile tech guru at Giraffe Design. He ensured a) my website is optimised for mobile users (a must in today’s age where 92.3% of internet users access the internet using a mobile phone[1]) and b) optimisation of my website’s performance by tweaking page load times.

As a result both desktop and mobile versions are fast and easy to use.

9.  Website handover and training

Giraffe Design are all about creating great websites on WordPress, and then giving you the tools to run and manage it yourself.  Stewart provided one-to-one training and a guidebook on key processes and tasks such as:

  • Adding a blog
  • Adding a page through duplication
  • Checking and improving Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) through Yoast SEO Plugin on WordPress
  • Changing photos and Alt text (the description used to describe a photo)

10.  Secure hosting and ongoing support

My negative experience with TSO Host (see tip number 7) meant I was already willing to move hosting to anyone but them. 

Luckily Giraffe Design offer a cost-efficient package that includes:

  • ongoing cost of hosting on a fast dedicated server which is good for site performance and Google
  • daily back ups and
  • providing 5 hrs maintenance annually to ensure the WordPress core files and plugins are kept up-to-date.

I know Giraffe back up my website regularly, keep the security certificates up-to-date and making it as resilient to hackers as possible, which is one less thing for me to worry about.


Having a bespoke website created for me by a knowledgeable and calm web and graphic designer was the best experience, and I would not hesitate to recommend Giraffe Design. I hope these Ten top tips for a smooth website creation will help you.

For those who want to listen to topics on website creation, website performance, mistakes to avoid etc. then I also highly recommend Marie Brown’s excellent podcast ‘The Website Coach’ podcast. She has created 100+ podcasts containing simple and actionable tips to help you get started and keep maintaining your website.   

[1] Exploding Topics: Internet traffic from Mobile Devices, August 2023 –


Sarah’s ability to research, investigate and uncover key sector information quickly is a real skill, and vital for a growing company like ours

Emma Mahy, CEO, IoT Solutions Group Ltd

Sarah and I created a marketing Video on the topic of ISO/IEC 27001. Working together was a lot of fun and pleasant. She was very co-operative, and it turned out that her calming voice was the perfect match for our Video

Fridolin Leibetseder, Chief Information Security Officer, x-tention gmbH

Thank you for today’s social media post review meeting. In fact, thank you for all the review meetings. I always find them inspiring.

Sue Melia, Founder, Netconsult Online

Thanks for the charity project report it’s great, don’t what I would do without you.

Charmaine Beckles, Trustee, It’s All About Culture (IAAC) charity