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How to design a website on your own?

07/10/07

Permalink 12:54:44 am, Categories: Website design  

How to design a website on your own?

1. Register a Domain Name

A domain name is the address of your site. For example, sparkcomputing.co.uk is a domain name. A good domain name is very essential for your business, because you want people to remember the address of your website easily. Furthermore, search engine pay a lot of attention to your domain name. For example, if you are selling mobile phone, you had better to have ‘mobile’ and ‘phone’ in the doman you want to register.

Domain names are paid for yearly and you can register them via Spark computing.

You can get a FREE domain name and a free website from the Internet. However, you might be forced to display some adverts on your website.

2. Purchase Web Hosting Space

A website is actually a collection of files (images, htmls, scripts and database). These physical files must be stored on a ‘Server’ hosted on a commercial data center. A server needs to be on 24/7 to make sure your website is available to the public all time.

3. Web Design Software (Optional)

Some web hosts provide website building tools so you do not need any additional software. It’s important you find out about this before you sign up with any host.

CoffeeCup, Dreamweaver, and HomeSite are three popular web editing software programs that people use to create and maintain their sites.

Avanced users can use a plain text editor to write html codes.
Normally the first file you need to save is the index file. It has be to saved as index.html. If you are using PHP technology, you need to save the file as index.php

If you’re not interested in learning HTML, you can download some free HTML templates from the Internet and modify the text.

4. Selling Products

If you need to sell products online, you need to integrate some ‘payment gateway’ system to your website. The most popular online payment systems are: Paypal, Nochex, and Googlecheckout. They are all free to sign up but you would be charged a percentage of each transaction.

Different payment processing system require different codes to integrate your website. You need to read the manual of Paypal/Nochex/Googlecheckout.

The good news is: PayPal/Nochex/Googlecheckout will give you the HTML code to paste into your site and it automatically creates the payment button and checkout interface for you.

For bigger business, it is more cost efficient by applying a merchant account from your Bank. With this merchant account, you can apply a online payment account from EPDDQ (part of Barclays), Worldpay, or Protx. Epdq/Worldpay/Protx do not force your customer to become a member and therefore it is much more friendly to use.

5. Make your site interesting

If you want to make your site more friendly to Internet users, you can create an online guestbook where people can leave you messages. Or you can create a forum so that you can have your own online coumminty.

All hosting packages from sparkcomputing have already had forum/guest-book/shopping-cart pre-installed.

6. Let everybody knows your site!

Just having a site hosted on a server is only half-job done. A website is a tool for communication. A website is just another product. If you don’t market and promote your website, you would not be able to enjoy all the hard work all alredy done. You’ll need to submit your website to search engines (Google, for example) and directories sites. You will need to embed some keyword in your html pages so that your website is ’search engine friendly’. On a ’search engine friendly’ website, all web pages are written in a way that the search engines can index your web pages easily.


7. Outsourcing programming and graphic design

If your business is going well, your customer will require better service. You probably need to add more features to your site and make your site looks professional.
To implement some feature programming skills are required. You can visit http://www.php.net to have a crash course on how to programming. But most of the time, you would find it much easier just to let the professional programmer to handle it. You need to tell the programmer what exactly you want and the programmer will give you a quote. You need to contact as many programming company as possible to get a good price. However, price is only one factor. You need to make sure they provide friendly service. When someting goes wrong, you want it to be fixed quickly. When new feature is required in the future, you would like to find the same people easily and upgrade your website.

To make your website looks professional, you would need good looking flash animation to decorate your site. Of course, animation is not a must. Some simple images which are consistent to the theme of your website sometimes can enhance your website greatly.

That’s website creation in a nutshell. To find out more details of each section above, I suggest you search the internet for each subject mention aboved.

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Spark Website Design, Shropshire

Technical articles on IT solutions.

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