If you are a determined web business person and you can deal with ignoring your inner perfectionist then you’ll be ok with this piece of advice.
Don’t worry about how your website looks at the beginning, just get it live.
Now many will rankle at this suggestion. We all have a need to look good. And your website is an expression of you.
So having an ugly or at least imperfect website can hurt the ego, but trust me, an ugly website is better than no website. And an ugly website with great content will be read. A pretty website with no content won’t be read.
That said the so-called brand experts will tell you this is not a good idea. But if your site doesn’t yet have a brand then who cares!
People are forgiving when you give them value in terms of a great web tool or a great content web site. So if you site is ugly but useful they will use it.
That said if you are getting growing interest in your site, you don’t want to leave it ugly for long.
We offer this advice apologetically because its advice we took from ourselves.
Take WebMogul101.com for example. (See image).
After we built the one page site to get WebMogul101.com live, we started to design a custom WordPress template to build out the site. What our webmaster put up was the ugly piece of nastiness that I show here. Not his fault, it was just the template that we chose on hand that most closely represented what we wanted to build out. It’s a work in progress. If you are reading this long after we have evolved the site then you get to peer into the past as to how we put this site together. If you are reading this any time close to February 2012 then you may even be reading this post on the ugly site.
Our process here was simple. Get something up that closely resembled what we wanted so there was somewhere to put content we were creating.
Then David started to do a custom job of pulling together the look and feel of the finish first version of the site that we were working towards. So this boxy ugly template will start to improve as we evolve it. See it here:
Our webmaster will go in and customize the existing base template to our specs. To do this find a competent web developer or learn yourself. There is a handy video on YouTube here on how to edit your WordPress theme.