Creating a website in this day and age, be it an auto parts one or otherwise, has come a long way over the past several years. If you have a particular design in mind and need a website, you can create one pretty easily.
You have access to numerous free templates, pre-made designs, and website builders that will help you get your business online pretty quickly. However, basing your entire auto parts website on a template can often lead to some bad design decisions. It would be just like basing your whole business on a single vehicle.
That said, here are several steps to help you build a highly functional auto parts website that your business needs, without needing to be an expert in the matter.
The first step in designing such a website is strategy. Instead of taking a haphazard approach, you should start by analyzing what you need from your website, what assets you possess, and budgeting for maximum effectiveness. So, let’s break this down:
- Determine Your Needs – Start by taking an in-depth look into what you want your future website to do. So, do you want it to only provide information in a brochure-style website or do you also want it to be interactive?
Do you want customers to be able to purchase directly from the site, and should you integrate with a shipping provider? Are you looking to edit it frequently by uploading new parts? Answering these types of questions will help you determine what features it needs to have and how to budget for it.
- Examine Your Assets – Before beginning to visualize the layout and overall design of your website, you should take inventory of all the assets you possess. By assets, we are referring to your digitized logo, fonts, colors, about-us history, product photos, videos, blog posts, physical address – if needed -, other contact information, contact forms, social media profiles, testimonials, reviews, etc.
Since everything about your website will revolve around these assets, you will need to know what they are before knowing where and how to put them together to make a visually pleasing, intuitive, and easily-navigable website. Keep in mind that some pre-made templates may not include sections for some of your assets, while others may have sections for assets you don’t have or need.
- Work out Your Budget – With your needs and assets in mind, you can begin working on your website budget. If you don’t budget properly, you may end up with a website containing only a portion of the features you wish to have, paying two to three times more than expected, or with a compromise in design, content, and functionality, which only provides a mediocre experience for visitors, at best.
What You Need for Your Auto Parts Website
There are several elements that will go into your website. We will provide you with a short rundown of what these are.
- Domain Name – The domain name is like your internet address like AutoPartsStore.com. You can lease this name for a certain amount of time from a domain registrar.
- Website Hosting – This is a service that connects your site to the internet. Most hosting providers offer domains free for one year and then charge you a fixed fee after that like $15/year. Without a domain name and hosting, your website cannot exist.
- Website Builder Software – This is the tool you will use to build your website. Website builders come in various shapes and sizes, containing a host of different features and templates. Some of the biggest names in the industry are Wix, Squarespace, Site123, HostGator, and others.
For this article, however, we’ll go with WordPress, but you are free to choose any other website software that best fit your needs. WordPress, however, is free and open-source, and according to statistics, roughly a third of all websites on the internet are made with it. That said, it may lack certain features and functionalities that another software may possess. Some paid software may also be more intuitive and easier to use.
- Website Templates – While it’s possible to design your website from scratch, you’ll need to know how to write code. Website templates, on the other hand, are pre-made HTML & CSS webpages that you can use, and they’re a great place to start. And it’s important to know that there are many pre-made auto parts website templates to choose from.
- Website Plugins and Extensions – Plugins and extensions are pieces of software that work alongside your site builders to provide additional functionalities. For WordPress, you have Yoast SEO for SEO optimization, Sucuri for security, UpdraftPlus for automatic backups, OptiMonster for conversion rate optimization, and many others more.
Design Your Website
Once you’ve downloaded WordPress to your domain, you can choose from a wide selection of auto parts themes (templates). You can get even more themes on the WordPress Repository or ThemeForest. Know that many of these themes bundle functionality with design. If there’s too much functionality, you are locked into the template. Nevertheless, WordPress allows for additional functionality via its plugins.
Using a good template will make the process pretty straightforward. Elementor is a WordPress plugin that allows for easy, drag-and-drop page-building functionality. Don’t forget to keep your needs and functionalities top-of-mind when designing your website. When it comes to auto parts websites, product pages and checkouts are typically the most important. Keep in mind that most visitors will also be using mobile devices. This means high-quality images that load quickly, easily scannable content, easy-to-navigate layout, and a simple checkout process.
Market Your Auto Parts Website
Last but not least, you should also look to feature your listings on eBay and Amazon. While your website will act as a digital hub, you can’t expect too many people to come to it directly. By using fitment, you will help boost online sales by reducing customer questions.
For information on how myFitment can help you get your website and listings in front of marketplace buyers, visit our homepage at https://www.myfitment.com or call us at 855-4FITMENT.