7 Replies
Scott Hewitt

Hi,

these are 2 sites that we use a lot within our company:

http://www.smashingmagazine.com/ - lots of great resources and articles, to start with it might be a bit overwhelming.

http://www.thefwa.com - the favourite website awards - amazing website from around the world. Some quite superb examples of web design, coding and interface. If nothing else a great way to spend an hour! You'll get some ideas as well.

Ideas/Pointers - just a few

Write a list of what you want from the site - you might find what you want doesn't fit your budget.

Make sure that you can edit the content and add pages easily 

Who owns the website - you or the designer? Important!

Who is doing the website hosting and how much does it cost?

How much for changes after the website is live?

Hope this helps,

Scott

Jerson  Campos

Create two different lists:

One list is things your website will need. ex: contact form, responsive design, goes well on mobile devices. This list is up to what you want your website to absolutely must have.

The second list is for things that it would be nice to have:  Embedded slideshow, RSS feeds like your twitter account. These are just extras that will make your website "pop"

Look around some different websites, not just your direct competitors, and see what you like, and what you don't like abou them. Pass this on to the web designer.

Most website designers will have a list of questions for you to give them an idea of what exactly you are looking for, even if you don't really know. If the designer already has a couple of "ideas" before even meeting you, those are some red flags there.

Caroline Turner

Thank you for the ideas and suggestions

Bruce - I've been training in my industry for many years but I have two wonderful kids who have special needs and due to that I can't work (travel etc). So if I can't get to work then work can come to me so I'm setting up an online training company to offer my courses to my clients (both UK and international). So in answer to the question, I'm building it so I can keep my home as it is set up specifically for their needs, and moving would massively effect their health. That's my mission. I'm a fast learner on a mission! I'd rather ask "silly" questions too know I've not missed any points that will effect the "product". I have a large market and there are only a few people in my industry who trained what I teach. 

Its been so helpful finding this site and information I've had back has been very helpful and I greatly appreciate it

Thank you

Caroline

Daniel Brigham

Caroline:

I just went through a website design (www.brighamcommunications.com). Two pieces of advice, since you asked:

1. Find two or so sites in the e-learning biz and base your features off of those sites. If you are looking for examples, maybe check out Tom Kuhlmann's website (rapid elearning blog)

2. Realize that things can go south with your web person, and that might have a big impact on your business. Make sure you are choosing this person because of their skills and not because they are convenient (neighbor, acqaintance, etc., etc.)

Can you tell I just had to "break up" with my web person? I use WordPress, and find it suits my needs for now. Best of luck and hope to see you around the forum.

Greg Martin

Hi Caroline, 

That is such an exciting position to be in. I could remember the excitement we used to have when we started too. 

I think a lot of the things you need were already mentioned by Scott, Jerson, Daniel and also Bruce.

If I may add a couple of points to consider, just be extra careful with the people you will deal with online. It is drastically different than it is with how you do business offline. It requires extra trust and confidence with certain people and clients. But, once you get to achieve that you will get a good running business. 

Also, since you may need people whom you will start the business with, you can check Staff.com and see how it may help you with staffing. That should help you get established. We have worked with some great people from there.

The most challenging part is the starting stage. But, it is also the most exciting!

All the best to you and your venture, Caroline!