This is a “dummy guide” on how to start a website and what is involved in running your site. This is to maximise greater success. Now, whether or not you’re starting for your business or plan on doing a blog, the concept is the same. You will obviously need to have in the back of your mind, your ultimate goal.
I’ve created a few sites over the years and currently have two that I own and don’t plan on selling. The sites I currently own have been running for over 8 years. Even though I have a full-time job I decided that I needed a hobby and here we are years later.
Now, the sites I own generate a small passive income. I say passive however, it isn’t really because passive would imply the sites sit there and I earn from it. This isn’t the case and I have to constantly update, create articles and a constant battle with (SEO). Which I will mention later in the article. So, passive isn’t the right word, it’s more of a little extra income. Extra income that goes on yearly web hosting, domain registrar and paying writers. Enough of me rambling on, but I wanted you to get an idea of what’s involved in a website.
Let’s get start on how to build a website…
So, like I previously mentioned you need to have a plan and your objective. You can create/start/build a website for your business or a blog.
First on the list, Website Name
So how do you build a website with no knowledge of how websites work. The first thing you need is a name. This might be the hardest part for some people because you want the perfect name, something people can easily remember but also relevant to what you plan on offering on the site. This can take some time to think through, after all, it’s a name that will be around for a long time. If you already have a business then obviously the website name would reflect your business in some way.
Choosing a Hosting Plan
Once the website name is out of the way the next step is choosing the right hosting plan to accommodate your site. For both my current sites and sites previously, I have used SiteGround hosting. Now, I recommend SiteGround purely due to the fact that I have had nothing but a great experience with them. From their ease of use platform to amazing helpful customer service. SiteGround offers 3 hosting plans, the StartUp plan, GrowBig Plan and GoGeek plan (which I use).
- The StartUp plan is perfect for people with one website that are starting now.
- · The GrowBig plan is a great value for money offer, including the option for multiple websites and the Ultrafast PHP that greatly improves website speed.
- · The GoGeek plan is perfect for people with e-commerce and larger sites, or more geeky development needs like more server resources and GIT integration.
Once you choose the right plan for you, follow on to registering the domain name that you took so much precious time on thinking through. The registrar fee will be within the final price and everything will be in one place. Which, believe me is easier and useful in the long run. I found about it the hard way, so trust me.
You can also add extra services at this point or proceed to pay for your plan. The extra services can range from Content Delivery Network (CDN) which is a useful tool for the speed of your site and helps minimise delays in loading website pages. Also, Domain Privacy helps avoid spam and identity theft, hide your details with Domain Privacy in the Whois database.
SiteGround has all the built-in tools for easy access and in an easy to use platform with recommendations.
On in the dashboard you will need to build your website using the WordPress.
Let’s talk about WordPress
Now, there are a number of different platforms you can use to build a website, such as Wix, Weebly and Squarespace. However, due to my personal experience and again how easy it is to use, with no website coding knowledge, I will recommend WordPress. WordPress platform is easily installed through the site tools section of SiteGround.
The WordPress platform is the ultimate place to build your website and it will contain Themes (look at your website) and Plugin (tools to tweak the function of your website). There are thousands of themes that are free and I recommend taking your time to go through and choose one that will suit either your blog or company. The plugin comes after and there are a few that you will need to add such as a security plugin to keep your site safe and caching plugin to help your site load faster. You will learn about plugin really fast
What about Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
What about it? Well, where do I start? SEO is a very large topic and not one that can be talked about in a few paragraphs. SEO ultimately is the technique for getting pages to rank higher in places like Google and Bing. When you rank higher in search engines you are on the way to an increase in traffic. That means more sales and more interaction if you plan on running Ads.
Like I mention SEO consists of a number of techniques such as, choosing the right title and description for your articles, utilising anchor text, adding alt text to your images, selecting the right headers within your article. That’s just to name a few things on tackling SEO. SEO is an ongoing thing when running a website, luckily there is a Plugin such as YOAST that will help you through this.
What Next Then…
Well, now that your website has been built, you need to start creating content. You have to plan what you’re going to write before actually starting to write. You will learn loads as you go along and it’s absolutely fun running a website. So, what are you waiting for.
Oh, I forgot to mention, Secure Sockets Layer (SSL), ultimately this is the encrypt certificate, that when installed on your site activates a padlock and HTTPS protocol allows secure connection from a web server to browser. Basically, it’s used for a secure credit card transaction, logins and data transfer, so it’s recommended and essential in this day. Again, hosting from SiteGround will give you all the tools for setting SSL up.