How to Design Your First Branded Business Website

A website is the best way to share your brand with the world — here’s how to design your creator website for maximum impact.

If you’re of a certain age—let’s say 35 or older — you probably remember the awe and immersion you felt the first time you spun up Netscape Navigator and visited your favorite brand’s business “website.”

Now fast-forward to this age of AI, Uber, Roblox, Meta, Snapchat, and so much more… And guess what? A website is still the best way to share your brand with the world.

That’s true whether you’re a mega brand or a humble creator, solopreneur, or small business owner. Decades on, a website still provides unparalleled creative flexibility and control over your brand. It’s a place where visitors can learn more about you on your terms. A great website helps you tell your story, build trust, and even create community and fans for life.

Today we’re sharing a primer on branding and website design for online creators and entrepreneurs. We’ll walk you through how to design a website for your brand, whether you’re a creator, solopreneur, or small business owner with a team of employees.

This article won’t function as a step-by-step guide to launching a website or go into too much depth on the topic of branding itself. (For that, The SPI Beginner’s Guide to Branding can help you define your brand’s mission, vision, and more, and decide if it should be a personal brand or a company brand.)

Rather, this is a field guide to designing a website that puts your brand front and center and connects with your target audience.

Hand drawn website wireframes.
Photo by Hal Gatewood on Unsplash

Why You Need a Branded Website

So why a branded business website? Along with your email list, a website is a must-have when you’re starting out building your brand. Like an email list, you have more creative and administrative control over a website than you do your presence on other platforms like Facebook, Instagram, or Etsy. And with the exception of rare service interruptions or security breaches, your site is much less likely to disappear the way a social media account can be banned or suspended.

Your branded website is like your home base, a focal place for shaping your brand image and narrative. At SPI, we recently revamped our website to focus on our core focus of community building and make it cleaner and easier to navigate.

Here’s what a well-crafted small business website can help you do:

Your Website Should Express Your Brand Personality

When a lot of people hear the word brand, they think logo. And true, a logo is a key part of your creator or online entrepreneur brand — but your brand is also a lot more than just a snazzy graphic. Since your website is your home base, it’s the best place to convey the essence of your brand through the following key elements:

Patagonia's purpose statement on its website: "to save our home planet."
Patagonia’s purpose statement is simple but powerful: to save our home planet.
Screenshot of Ali Abdaal's home page.
Ali Abdaal’s site uses a calming combo of grey, black, blue, and white.
Screenshot of the Smart Passive Income home page: "Become the entrepreneur you want to be."
At SPI, we aim for a mix of friendly, even a little casual, but punchy.
Dollar Shave Club's homepage: "Shave time. Shave money."
Dollar Shave Club’s tagline is #dadjoke perfection, conveying the brand’s irreverent nature.
Example of SPI's signature font: Figtree.
SPI’s signature font, Figtree, matches our brand voice by being approachable.
Jay Clouse's Creator Science logo.
The logo for Jay Clouse’s Creator Science brand captures both elements (get it?) of the brand name perfectly.

Optimizing the Visual Experience of Your Online Business Website

For the most part, visitors will experience your website visually, so there are a few more important considerations when it comes to your site’s visual assets. Make sure the images, background designs, and other visuals you use on your site are:

Gif of Paul Furey's animated website text: "We want to be honest, and yet ... we all find good reasons not to be."
Consultant Paul Furey’s website uses text and images to tell a story in a captivating way.
Example of SPI's branded color palette and icons.
Icons representing different elements of our online community share the same look and feel, including color palette.
Web design firm Nettl's ad campaign showing the humorous risk of not making your images mobile responsive. The full web page reads: "Badminton Scuba Breathing Apparatus" but the superimposed iPhone version reads "Bad breath."
Web design firm Nettl’s ad campaign showed the humorous risk of not making your images mobile responsive.
Screenshot from the SPI community: "Ready to find [crossed out] join your people and level up?" Smiling faces decorate the page.
The SPI community is made up of people, after all!

By making sure the visual and written experience of your website is consistent, professional, and aligned with your brand identity and voice, you’ll foster a sense of familiarity and trust with your audience.

A Great Creator Website Needs a Great User Experience: Layout and Navigation

Your website isn’t just a static display; it’s an interactive experience for your audience. Once you’ve established the key brand elements your website needs, from your brand’s purpose to its voice, tone, and visual identity, it’s time to start designing the actual site layout.

As you’re choosing a layout, think about what will best convey your brand identity and message while making things as seamless and intuitive as possible for your visitors to navigate and find what they’re looking for. Here are some popular layout options to consider:

Screenshot from Seth Godin's blog, showing the advantage of a single-column layout.
Seth Godin’s famous blog takes advantage of the simplicity of a single-column layout.
Screenshot from The Verge's home page, showing the example of a magazine-style website layout.
The Verge’s site is a bold example of magazine layout.
Screenshot of SPI's card-style testimonials on our Community page.
We use cards to share member testimonials on our Community page, made using

A quick note on navigation: Whatever layout you choose, your users’ ease in navigating your site will determine how long they stick around and whether they’ll find what they need—or if they’ll get frustrated and give up. You can also help people navigate your branded website through careful placement and organization of menus and footers.

The Strategic Content Your Website Needs

You’ve figured out your brand’s visual identity and voice and chosen a layout for the site. Now you need to fill it with useful content that tells your visitors who you are, what you do, and how you can help them!

These are some of the key pages to consider for your branded business website—some are must-haves, while others will depend on your business and offerings:

Examples of Online Creator and Entrepreneur Branded Websites

For a little inspiration, here’s a selection of great branded business websites created by online creators and entrepreneurs just like you! These folks all happen to be members of our SPI Pro community, which you can learn more about at

Gnome Angel

Ange Wilson’s quilting-based creator business website has a strong, vibrant visual identity based around a palette of pinks and blues and a playful header font. The Gnome Angel value proposition greets you as soon as you open the home page, and as you scroll you learn about Gnome Angel’s resources and products via a “patchwork” design style that evokes a quilt. The “sticky” navigation menu persists as you descend the home page, providing easy access to the rest of the site.

Gnome Angel's quilting-based creator website home page: Gnome smiles with an image of a colorful quilt and playful fonts.
Gnome Angel’s quilting website uses a colorful palette and playful fonts.


The Piscari site is a company brand website with a simple, clean, functional home page that serves as an About page for the company and its founder, Mike Lander, with a link to join the Piscari email list at the bottom. A top nav menu that displays on every page makes it easy to learn more about the company, its services, and other resources. The “Contact Us” button, framed in bold green, highlights the main call to action visitors are encouraged to take.

Mike Lander's Piscari homepage, with a clean design and simple graphics.
Mike Lander’s Pisacari website uses a clean, yet colorful homepage design.

Jette Stubbs

Career and business coach Jette Stubbs’ site introduces her offerings right off the bat, followed by a friendly photo of Jette that humanizes the brand. The simple single-column layout reduces distraction and guides you down the page as you encounter a happy client’s testimonial and learn more about Jette’s services. Graphic elements and images are interspersed throughout, along with subtle font color changes to spark attention. The parallax scroll effect with Jette’s face in the background adds more human dimension and a bit of novelty. A simple top navigation menu is duplicated at the bottom, with links to an About page, Jette’s podcast, and testimonials.

Jette Stubbs' homepage, featuring a photo of Jette smiling and introducing her offerings.
Jette Stubbs’ site is built around humanizing her brand and introducing offerings quickly.

Still on the Fence about Building a Website for Your Small Business? 

We’ll end with a few reminders — and by debunking a few common misconceptions about creating a branded business website:

If you’re feeling daunted, don’t! We’ve got all the support you need to start building your brand and designing a killer website to show it off to the world. Check out our site’s Free Resources tab, where you’ll find content for entrepreneurs at any level. If you’re ready to take the next big step in your online business journey, head to to learn about our communities for online entrepreneurs. You can learn from others like you who have built their own branded websites, gain access to our full library of courses, participate in live events, and more.

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  • David Grabowski

    Hi, I’m David, SPI’s editorial manager. I write about podcasting, creativity, and more. I’d love to connect with you in our communities!

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