Having a good quality website that works for your business is one of the most important things you can do to help bring clients and customers your way.
However, before you start rushing through this process, it's important to have the fundamentals of your brand created first. Your website should be a reflection of your brand. When potential clients/customers click on to it, they should get an immediate feel for what you do and how you can help.
Your website can be beautifully designed and look great, but, if it doesn't represent who you are as a business then it really isn't doing its job. This is why I think it's important to start building your brand first and then use this identity to influence the design and tone of voice of your website.
I completely understand that budgets can be tight when starting a new business and so - whilst I do think that having a complete brand identity is an important part of building your business - I have also created several websites where the only design element of their brand a client has, is their logo. Remember that its not only the design elements that make up your brand, but also your tone of voice, your why and your purpose. As long as I have this information, I can create a website that perfectly aligns with your vision whilst taking design elements from the logo.
Take my client The Upcycled Home Co. The only designed element of her brand that Helen had was her logo. However, she had built up a definite style and brand personality over the years in the curation of her beautiful shop in Mount Edgcumbe, Cornwall. Helen knew she wanted customers visiting the website to have the same relaxed, leisurely shopping experience that she provides in her actual shop. One way we achieved this was by organising the products on the website into collections that customers could browse through and take their time exploring the lovely products.
I drew upon the hand drawn aspects of the logo and also the coastal and countryside location of the shop to create some line drawings to include across the site, bringing out the creative elements of Helen's business.
I think Helen's website is a perfect example that, as long as you are clear on the fundamentals of your brand, it's possible to create a website that perfectly represents your business and attracts your ideal clients and customers.