Website Design

The Building Blocks of a Website – A Beginners Guide

Rebecca VanDenBerg

by | May 10, 2016

Are you thinking about getting your own website? Don’t know where to start?

There are some basic parts of a website that you need to get absolutely right in order to have a functioning promotional tool that generates sales for your business.

Think of your website as advertising your company on the internet. Your website is a digital advert that you want to get noticed on the web to attract new customers to your product or service. As with print advertising, there are key components that will make your website produce results.

Let’s take a look at the major components needed for a website.


Your Domain is the web address where you will be found on the internet. (Note that the terms domain, address, URL all mean the same thing.)

It is important that your web address stands out and speaks for your company. Your website domain will be more easily found if it means something related to your business. Your business name or the service you sell is the most ideal for a domain name. Shorter is easier to say, remember and print on promotional materials.  When trying to decide between 2 names, practice saying it outloud or having to spell it to someone. That will often times help pick the best one.

It’s ok if you first choice in domain names are already taken. You can still have a successful website with a domain name that is slightly different than your business name.

Registering domain names is easy and affordable. It’s a great idea to register and claim several variations of your ideal name so that no one else can claim them.  We recommend NameCheap for domain name registrations.


You can think of Hosting in the same way that a publication sells you space to place a print ad. With a website, a company provides storage space and access for your website. You pay a monthly or annual charge and in return you get a place for your website files to live.

Hosting providers generally offer the same service – access to the internet for your website. The biggest differentiating factor here is price. However, if you are hosting a WordPress site, you want to choose a host that specializes and understands the best way to optimize a WordPress installation. Not every host is great with WordPress.

To get your website noticed it takes the correct use of words and images, same as making a person flicking through the newspaper stop and read your print ad. If someone clicks onto your site, you want them to stop and read. From there you may want to educate, inform, or entertain and, ultimately, you want to influence them to buy.


Design is how words and images come together in a layout; it is how your website is built and structured. The design process involves building a collection of electronic files. This process determines the layout, fonts, styles, graphics, images and interactive features that deliver web pages to the visitors to your website.

In advertising, and with a website, determining the “look” and “voice” of your company or product is a major decision to make. Your choice of designer will influence the “feel” of your website and how well customers interact with it.


You can think of this type of info sharing as the website SEO, which stands for Search Engine Optimization. When Google, Bing, Yahoo or any other search engine decides the results that best fit a search this is SEO in action.

For example: your website is about “selling your home tips.” A user searches Google for “tips on how to sell your home.” How high up is your ranking in the results of this search? A well-built website will get your website ranked high in the searches that are important to you and your business. This action is called optimization.


Website maintenance is the ongoing preservation of all aspects of your website. This is especially critical for a WordPress website for safety and security. Keeping your plugins, themes and WordPress installation up to date helps ensure it keeps working properly and helps prevent hackers from accessing through backdoors in outdated code.

Your content will need to be kept up to date with any changes in the market or new products you are offering. Your SEO will need to be constantly appraised and improved. Effective maintenance ensures that you are presenting the brilliant website you had designed initially just as brilliant on Day 30, Day 100, and Day 300, as it was on Day 1.


A blog involves writing and publishing new content for your website on a regular basis. Not only a great way to keep your website fresh and your customers informed, your blog also puts SEO to work, because the blog text will use search terms in detail that boost your search ranking.

Your website must get each element in place and functioning with the highest quality and effectiveness to turn your online presence into a promotional tool that reaches customers and converts traffic into sales.

If you have any questions, please get in touch and we will explain further and help you explore options. We know how to work with you to build and maintain a website that is functional and effective.

Some links in this article may be affiliate links, but we only recommend products we use ourselves.

Industries We Have Worked With

Small Businesses • Commercial / Residential Real Estate • Churches & Ministry • Non-Profits

E-commerce Businesses • Livestock Producers • Farms • Marketers

Contact RVWS

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