Want to build your own website? A lot of people want to start their own online businesses these days.
With the economic downturn, many people are going online to sell their own products or advertise their services to a wider audience.
In the old days (ok, 5-10 years ago) building a website was more complicated. You had to know programming or HTML. Or maybe you had to hire a web designer and pay him every time you wanted to update your site.
Today though, things are much easier. If you want to build your own website there are 3 main things you’ll need:
#1 A Domain Name
The domain name is like the address of your website. It is what someone will type into their web browser when they want to visit your site.
A good domain name is short, easy to remember and has a .com ending. First of all you want to make it short in order for people to remember.
Another reason to keep it short is that it’s easier to reprint your domain on promotional items like mugs, key chains, t-shirts and baseball caps.
You also want to get a .com domain name ending if you can. While there are lots of endings like .us, .net, and .org, most people today prefer to see a .com ending. Some people also think it looks more professional.
You can often buy multiple domain names from online domain sellers (just do a Google search for ‘buy domain names’). You can also usually get a free domain name with your webhosting service.
#2 Webhosting Service
A webhost basically is a server that houses your website pages and shows them to the world. A webhost (unlike your computer) is always connected to the Internet and will show your website when web searchers request to view it.
There are lots of different types of webhosting today but – unless you’re planning on thousands of pages and thousands of customers every day, you can probably go with a basic shared hosting plan (shared hosting means you are sharing the web servers with other sites as well.)
These are the cheapest plans and fine for most people just starting out. Plus, if your website grows gigantic later on, you can upgrade to dedicated hosting (where you have your own dedicated server).
#3 Website Building Software
This is the method you’ll use to build your website – both the content (written words) and the layout of your website.
You’ve probably heard of website building software like Dreamweaver. However today there are a lot simpler, easier-to-use software packages that anyone – including a total newbie – can use to build professional looking sites.
Many webhosting services will offer you some kind of sitebuilder software for free. However be aware that this software is limited in what it can do – and many times you have to ‘upgrade’ to a paid package to continue growing your site.
It’s actually far cheaper in the long run to buy a good website building software package that lets you build as many sites as you want instead of paying monthly for one of these online website building services.
Another thing people use to build sites is WordPress. WordPress is one of the most popular blog-building tools on the net. You can also now use it to build static website as well – not just blogs. And it’s completely free to download.
With WordPress, you can choose from a number of website templates or themes and build in the content of your site from there. WordPress can be used and integrated with most webhosting accounts.
But if you’re planning on using WordPress, it’s important to check that your webhost will allow this before you sign up.
So those are the 3 main things you’ll need to build your own website – a good domain, a webhosting account and a way to actually build your site