When you are creating an online presence for yourself, your business, or anything at all, it is important to keep in mind that this will be the first impression that you give to many people (and possibly the ONLY impression, based on the end user experience).
The Internet obviously makes the world accessible to anyone and everyone at the touch of a button, this means that you can be introduced to anyone around the world because of your website. What this means for you is that if you have a website that is slow, designed poorly, or otherwise not user friendly, you are basically setting yourself up to make a bad first impression on anyone and everyone who sees it!
Creating an online presence for yourself has a lot to do with how you want to be seen. It is great to always keep that in mind when you are working on your website because it is what will draw people in, or push them away. If you have a brick and mortar store, selling things to people is priority, which makes your marketing and speed of site the most important thing.
You need to have everything worked out so that every single part of your website makes the customer want more and want to keep scanning around and adding things to their cart. If your site is slow or hard to navigate they will not want to continue shopping. I have personally found stores online and loved their website so much that I felt like I just HAD to go into the actual store. This is something that you should be striving for! To create the feeling in your customers that they just MUST have more of your store!
For personal websites, it is highly important that you are doing the same type of pragmatic thinking. Knowing who you are marketing to and why is exactly what will make your website successful.
Personal branding is a big deal because it is the exact impression that you will be making on people. When you are making your website, it is very important that you have all of that sorted out beforehand so that when you do design your site and put everything together, you can take a step back and make sure it is cohesive and communicates the exact right message to the people that will be surfing it!
People like to know that they can trust your website and the experience you are providing them with online. This is why it is so important for you to prepare a website just as you would prepare an actual office that customers visit. It needs to be easy to use, fast, and most of all should give your customers a good idea of who you are and why they need to be coming to you for your specific products.
Your website is how people will be “meeting” you, so it is highly important that you give them a great first impression and show them the best of everything you have to offer!