How to Start a New Website From Scratch
By Anthony Buchi Iwuji
Nowadays, many business brands, product or service providers and other group entities choose to create their very own portal online. Hiring a web design company or individual is the usual trend for larger businesses, most especially if they are able to set aside a large amount of fund for the said marketing strategy. But most small businesses choose to do website building all on their own so as to save their money. And if you are among these group of small businesses, you might have asked yourself one time, “How do I start a new website?” Well here is a helpful checklist to guide you along the way.
A. Web Hosting
A web host is a location where your website and its pages are stored. In deciding which web host you should choose, you need to consider the pros and cons for your options. You might prefer to start new website with free web hosting to save money, although most of these web hosts offer its used limited storage spaces only. If you are to build a site that won’t need a lot of pages and files to store, then you can settle for the free ones. But aside from the limited disk space, some free web hosts also have different limits for the following:
No Freedom on Domain Name and IP Address Selection
No Uptime Guarantee
File Type Options
Minimum Bandwidth Allocation
Force Placement of Advertisements
Limited Customer Support
Restricted Search Engine Optimization
Limited Databases and CGI Support
Short Life Span
B. Domain Name Selection and Registration
In choosing a domain name, you need to consider the idea that in the name itself you will be able to promote your brand of business. If you want to create a better domain name, then you might rethink your idea of choosing the free web hosting option, for they don’t really give you much of a freedom in choosing a domain name. Here are a few more things to consider in choosing a domain name:
Incorporate keywords into your domain to help the site get search engine rankings.
Create unique domain names to avoid people from confusing it with other sites.
Use a.com domain as much as possible for the benefit of infrequent internet users.
Make it easy for people to type and remember it.
Keep it as short and as simple as possible.
Create and fulfill expectations. People must know what your website contains just by hearing or reading your domain name.
Avoid infringing on any copyrights.
“Brand” your domain name to build additional value for your site.
Avoid hyphens and numbers to make it easier to read or mention.
Once you have selected the domain name that’s right for your website, you must have it registered. There is usually a minimal cost in having your domain name registered, but it’s price you’ll have to pay to make your website work for you.
C. Website Planning and Designing
Planning your website’s contents is essential. This will make the rest of the steps easier. In planning how to start a new website, you’ll be able to determine what must be on your website and how it should appear. It is easier for you to build the primary pages first and just add new ones as you get more comfortable in building it. Preparing a sitemap will also be beneficial for you and for your site visitors once your site is up. Another thing to consider during the planning period is choosing which software to use. It is essential that you learn about HTML before deciding to create your own site. This should be an easy task because the Internet now offers netizens a lot of ways to learn HTML in the quickest possible time.
D. Creation of Individual Web Pages
Once you figured out the number of pages you’ll need, you can then start creating individual pages that will make up the whole site. Each page must be linked to the home page and must have links to the other pages for easy navigation. Your web pages must also contain relevant information: long enough to highlight important details but short enough for scannability purposes. A web page that contains long paragraphs might bore your readers so keep your contents as concise as possible.
E. Website Publishing and Promotion
It’s not enough that you just plan to start a new website and then build it. After you finish planning, designing and building each pages, you also need to publish it and maximize its searchability. Through search engine optimization or SEO, you can determine how people may get to pull up your site from search engines. SEO takes a lot of time, effort and patience but when done correctly, it will provide you with better search engine rankings. Part of the optimization process is researching your keywords and having your selected keyword phrases placed strategically within the pages and on the site’s meta elements.
F. Website Metrics and Analytics
Once you have your site up and running, you need to perform certain tracking activities for you to know how well your website is performing. SEO will be very beneficial for you to get a positive result on the metrics and analytics tracking. By tracking your site’s performance, you’ll be able to check and record the trend of your website and know which promotion and advertising solutions that you have are effective.
F. Website Maintenance
Maintaining a website may seem exhausting, but for your site to look good and work well at all times, this is a very vital part. You can not start a new website and just leave it on its own. You also need to update its content every now and then to keep up with your entity or company’s trends. SEO is also a part of your website that you must frequently check. Keyword trends and the search engine platforms get updated often so you must make sure that your keywords still get ranks on search engines.
Make Your Website Work by Working on it
These are the most essential things one must consider on how to start a new website. Remember that to make websites work for you, you need to work on it, too. Either you chose to hire a web designer or start a new website on your own, it is much better that you know the basics of web design before venturing into one.
Anthony is the CEO of http://www.makemoneydirectories.com he offers services at http://www.makemoneydirectories.com ranging from website design, SEO, marketing, advertisement opportunities and guest post.