Building and Hosting Your Own Website

When I first built this website over ten years ago there was only one way to build it- Using an HTML template and a Web Editor,

A good knowledge of HTML, basic web design, and a web page editor like Dreamweaver or FrontPage were essential.

Today the changing technology has made building your own website much easier. There is no need to:Build-website-help

  • Become a web designer
  • Purchase expensive software
  • Become an HTML or PHP guru

Why Build Your Own Site?

The main reasons are

  • Cost – much cheaper than using a designer
  • You have complete control of the site
  • You can make changes quickly and easily
  • It is a useful skill to learn and can be enjoyable

However there are also certain problems with building it yourself that you need to be aware of

  • It involves time and effort and
  • You must be willing to learn new skills.
  • It may take longer to get the site looking the way you want it.
  • It may not look as good as a site from a professional designer.

Getting Started

Whether you’re building a business, personal, or hobby website there are 3 main steps involved. They are:

  1. Decide on the site building technology
  2. Decide on the Domain Name and hosting provider.
  3. Build and publish the site

Site Technology

In my opinion this is the most important step, as choosing the wrong option could cause you to spend a lot of time, effort and money without a result

Over 50% of the new websites being built today will use WordPress .

Well known brands like CNN and UPS use it as well as over 50% of the top 100 blogs on the web.

WordPress isn’t the only option but it is the one I would recommend you follow.

You can find an overview of the other options with their pros and cons here.

Domain Name and Host

Once you have decided on the technology you will need a domain name and hosting account to host the website.

Generally you will use the same company for your hosting and domain name registration as it makes it easier to manage.

I use a UK host ( 1&1-UK) for my UK sites, and Blue Host for all other sites.

See Choosing a Domain Name and Website Hosting for more details

Build and Publish

If you using an HTML/PHP template then you will need to use web page editing software like Dreamweaver.

It is for this reason that I don’t recommend this option any more.

With WordPress you create pages and mange the site via a web browser, and don’t need any web page editing software.

Common Questions

How Much does it Cost? – Around £8/year for a .com domain name and approx £50/year for hosting.

Do I need to Learn HTML? – Yes and No. Having a basic understanding is necessary regardless of what most other sites would like you to believe.

However you don’t need to be an expert. My starting HTML course covers all you really need to get started.

Do I need to Learn Web Design?- No -There many professional designs available in the form or themes( WordPress) and templates (HTML/PHP).

Providing you don’t want a completely bespoke design, then It is simply a question of choosing a design for the site rather than creating a new design from scratch.

What About Building a blog? – Many people get confused between websites and blogs.

A blog is a Website with the content arranged by date, and is the online equivalent of a newspaper. It is used for presenting time sensitive information.

See a beginners guide to blogging for more details

Getting Help or Questions

Have a question? Want to request a tutorial ! Then just ask and I will do my best to answer as quickly and accurately as possible.

Regards
Steve

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