How to Create a Website
There’s basically three ways to create a website yourself. I’ve been creating websites for a living since 2004 and have made dozens of sites by each of the following methods.
|3 Ways to Make Your Own Website:|
|1. HTML||Most control over result|
|Most time consuming||Dreamweaver|
|2. CMS||Make site changes quickly|
Lots of free applications available
|CMS software must be installed and configured correctly||Wordpress (Install at HostGator)|
|3. Website Builder||Fastest and easiest way to make a site||Must host site with web builder service||Hub|
Recommendation: Use a website builder if you’re new to making websites – use WordPress if you’re more comfortable with coding
1. Make html pages using a text editor or html editor software. You don’t need an html editor, it just makes coding easier. Dreamweaver is the best in the industry. This site has tips for creating columns, site layout, formatting, etc. After you create web pages and link them together into a website, you’ll need a web host to store your files and make them available on the internet. There are lost of good quality cheap hosting sites available. Typical cost is about $5 per month to host any number of pages and receive any amount of traffic. I have used Hostgator for years and really like their service. They have been around a long time, offer quality hosting at an affordable cost, and have great customer service (which is something you may need more of when just starting out).
Advantages: Get to learn a new skill, the most hands-on approach, no black boxes – you see how everything works, cheapest way to make a website
Disadvantages: Most time consuming, most difficult to learn
2. Create a website by using a Content Management System (CMS). There are lots of content management system applications available for creating a website. Some are free and some are quite expensive. One of the most popular CMS platforms available is WordPress. It’s gotten to be so popular because it’s free, it’s really easy to setup and use, and it has such a large number of users creating applications for use with WordPress.
Having a large number of users is nice for at least two reasons. First, thousands of different applications have been created for WordPress. So no matter what type of site you want, or no matter what type of functionality you want for your site – someone has already figured it out and makes the solution available for free or low cost. Second, no matter what problem you may have with your site, someone else has already had the problem and solved it. Just visit any of the numerous WordPress forums to find the solution to any problem.
You’ll still need to sign up with a web hosting company to make your CMS website available on the internet. There are many web hosting options to choose from. Most web hosting companies offer a ‘1-click install’ of wordpress on your web hosting account. This means you can just sign up with a web hosting service, click one button to have WordPress installed, and then start adding text and images to your website. It really couldn’t be easier. You’ll still need to learn the basics of wordpress, but again, since there’s so many users, lots of great wordpress tutorials already exist for free.
Advantages: Interior site linking is managed for you, ability to quickly make changes to your whole site by editing the site’s theme, lots of free plugins available to extend your site’s functionality
Disadvantages: Not many, WordPress is one of the best ways of creating a website. (I recommend installing WordPress through HostGator.
3. Create a website with a website builder. Website builders are online software and web hosting companies in one. These companies make it super easy to create your website in no time. There’s no programming required and no separate web hosting company to deal with. Just start making your website right away by selecting a professionally designed template and adding text and images. You can upload your own images or use some of the thousands that website builder services have available. Create any number of pages (photo albums, newsletters, catalogs, etc) and click Publish and you’re done. You can also setup an online store and start selling products easily.
Advantages: Nothing to learn – just start designing right away, make your website fast
Disadvantages: Must keep your website hosted with the web builder company, more expensive (slightly)
Creating a Website Tutorial
If you’ve always wanted to create a web site, but you just didn’t know where or how to start one, I built this little tutorial just for you. It starts right at the very beginning and shows you how to make a free website with HTML code using tools that you already have.
If you are a Windows user, you already have NotePad and if you’re running a Mac, you’ll also have some kind of simple text editor in your accessories. That’s all it takes. A simple text editor and your browser.
First timers should start with the 3 lesson Beginner HTML tutorial. You’ll learn to build a basic website in the Intermediate tutor. The code is all copy and paste, but by the time you’re finished, you’ll be writing code by hand.
You can open the tutorial in your browser, open your text editor next to it, and work at your own pace. I set it up just so you could do that.
I’m also developing a series of free web templates using the HTML and CSS presented in the tutorial. When you complete the tutorial, you’ll have the basic knowledge needed to take a template and turn it into your very own website. You’ll learn the following:
- How to create a website template and then use it to create a three page working web site.
- Hosting your web site and putting it on the web. There are many website hosting options to choose from.
- How to link your webpages together, use color and add pictures to your web pages.
- How to set your web page up with a style sheet so that it can be redesigned just using the style sheet.
The tutor is divided into beginner, intermediate, and advanced phases. In turn, you’ll create your web site template, create a website (3 pages), and then edit the site to your liking and get it online.
Most people are surprised to see how fun creating a website can be. And it’s certainly a lot more affordable than hiring website design services. I’ll bet you like it too!
Let’s Get Started!!