How to start making a website

1 Comment » Written on October 24th, 2010 by
Categories: Website Development

With the higher Internet penetration at global level, the world as we know it has dramatically changed. About everything we consider in life, the Internet has moved it to a whole new level. If it's business, online presence and sales have become a necessity in today's competitive environment, if it's about a hobby or belief, online world has made it easy to connect with people sharing same interests, if it's about knowledge, the Internet is nevertheless the most complete resource you could access, updated every second by individuals around the world.

So how do we set an online presence? Does making a website require any special knowledge, do you need to hire someone or can you do this alone?

Well I am the adept of doing it myself. For most of my needs, and I am sure for most of your needs, the below resources and tutorials for how to make a website will be more than enough. You can do a simple standalone website or a dynamic website (constantly updated - like a blog, forum, ecommerce site) with advanced knowledge in web development required. In fact, with no knowledge required in the field. My tutorials will take you through the beginning steps and based on your online needs, I will show you how to discover the best solutions.

But first of all, let's start with the beginning. Take a block note and a pen and put your idea of a website on the page. Answer yourself the following questions first: what do I want to do? do I want to simply share a hobby with other people or do I want to make sales? do I want to make a standalone website that once developed just stays there or do I want a website I can update constantly and also interact with other people? what name should my website have? what structure should I use?

These are just a few of the questions I recommend going through, and though for most questions the answers must be looked by you, I can give you a few suggestions for some others.

1: once you have put your ideas on the paper is good to think of a name for your website. The name of the website must be short, easy to remember by other users, connected to the website's approached subject. Take for example the name of this blog, Webmaster Wiki, is an eloquent name that tells you what you should find here: webmaster (related to website development / traffic / monetization) and wiki (a knowledge base, tutorials and resources).

2: you need to put down the structure of the website on paper. Really, you need to do that! Mostly because making any changes afterward, to categories, menus etc is a really big pain and is also not-recommended from a SEO perspective. Simply make it simple through the structure to understand what pages will you be having, how will you be grouping them and inter-connect them. It's an easy task that doesn't take a lot of time, and can save you a lot of work later on.

3: choosing the development platform. Again, not to worry, you don't need any special knowledge in the field. If you look at making a static website where you will put some info with not so many later updates, maybe HTML / CSS website development are the best option. This can easily be done using a WYSIWYG (What You See Is What You Get) editor like FrontPage. If you have ever used Word from the MicroSoft Office suite, that using FrontPage is no different. If however you look at having a website that would have constant updates, than a CMS (Content Management System) platform would be best option to use. In this category I cover just a few platforms like the most powerful blogging platform - WordPress, best content management system - Joomla, strongest forum software - phpBB, or the e-commerce platform - osCommerce. Many more CMS options can be found and tested in live demos Open Source CMS.

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