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How to Create a Professional Website In Less Than a Week
Heres a really simple way... any novice can create a fully functional website in less than a week.
Websites are the wave of the future. Although many companies are using an online presence to drive business to their brick and mortar stores, many hobbyists also tend to have a bit of interest in developing their own online presence as well. Developing a website from scratch can be rather expensive, but armed with the right tools, and given a little instruction, anyone can develop a professional website in less than a week.
One thing you must always remember is that anyone trying to do a particular job should be armed with the right tools. Having the right tools will definitely make your project a bit easier to complete.
I guess you are scratching your head wondering what type of tools I would be talking about. You see when you are developing a website, you become a builder, a painter, or an artist. You are taking an idea from your head and transforming it into a digital image so to speak. Just as if you were going to build a home from the ground up, take a paint brush and create a masterpiece painting, or take a piece of clay and create a winning statue, you need the right tools to do the right job.
The tools Im referring to are web graphics software, web design software, and ftp file transfer protocolsoftware. These are tools are a must if you want to get off on the right foot. There are so many of these types of programs that you must really do your homework in order to purchase the one the best fits your needs. Some of these programs can even be downloaded for free. Each program focuses on a particular task. The graphics software helps you create images for your website from scratch. The web design software in short helps you to design and build a website from scratch. The file transfer protocol software is you link to sending your completed web pages from you computer to the internet.
Day one should be focused on purchasing cyber "real estate", and purchasing a name for that real estate.
Building a website is like building a new house. You have to purchase the land and then you can purchase the materials to build the home on the land. Lets take a look at this. Every website has a so called name. Example www.1234.com. This is called the domain name. There are many places that you can purchase cheap domain names. They usually run under $10 dollars and are good for about a year. Once you have the domain name you can start looking for a place to host you website. There are many hosting companies that are popping up on a daily basis. Hosting can be dirt cheap or it can be rather expensive. It all depends on the quality of service you receive from the company. Heres another area you should consider researching before you make a purchase.
Day two should be focused on the whole planning aspect of your website.
The planning aspect of your website should be focused on the objective of your website, the audience you are trying to target, and how your competition is doing in the market. Focusing on the objective simply means to think about what you are trying to accomplish with your website. Your goals and accomplishments should fall into this category. You should also be trying to focus on a target market. Many internet marketers feel that you should focus on a niche market. Remember that the internet is a big playing field. A beginner will get lost in the crowd trying to cover several areas. Instead, try and focus on something with less competition but enough competition to stay in business. Targeting a specific market or niche market is basically the audience you are trying to win over.
Day two should also be focused on the look and feel of your website. For example, you should have a mental image of how you want your website should look. It would be safe to say that you could even sketch out a raw diagram of how you want things to look. Pay attention to the color scheme as well. remember that all colors do not coordinate with one another.
Day three should be focused on the type of graphics you plan on using.
In all honesty, web graphics can make or break the success of your online presence. The internet is all about information and speed. Its like going to a fast food restaurant. You go their because you something quick to eat. The internet is similar. A fast loading website will beat out any other website hands down any day. In order to have a fast loading website you must keep your image graphics file size down to a minimum. The more clutter or bells and whistles you add to your site, the faster it will take to load. There are several website design programs out their that will let you know how long it would normally take for you page to load up. Shrinking the file size, saving it in different formats, and even cropping the image can cut seconds off your loading time.
If you want to save money, you can purchase a graphics program and make images and logos on your own. If you are a bit scared of the venture, you have the option of hiring someone to do the job for you. Whatever choice you make, always do your research for the best details and outstanding customer support.
Here we are on day four. Only one day left. Creating your web pages.
This is basically the meat and bones of any website. For the most part, an easy way to build a website is to use what is called a template. Basically a template is a preset model used to create a number of different pages. It saves you time and headaches. Once you find the look and feel of your website, you use that interface as a preset model to help you move along more smoothly. There are many html editors that can help you do this quicker than usual. One thing to remember is that using an html editor prevents you from dealing with actual html coding. Basically what Im getting at is you dont really need to know html when using an html editor.
You want to focus on building links, inserting and formatting text, and focusing on building your other pages throughout your site. Day four is the day where everything starts coming together. Take your time on this day. Dont rush anything. Make sure you are satisfied with one step before moving on. Your website is basically a mirror image of what you stand for. It will reflect on your work ethic and personality.
Congratulations you made it to day five. Give yourself a pat on the back. This day is spent publishing your website to the world.
This is where all you work is tied together and presented in a nice package. In order to do this you need some type of ftp software. In technical terms its called File Transfer Protocol. This is how you transfer your web page files and graphics from your computer to your hosting company. The procedure is rather simple. You basically use a point and click interface. You highlight the file you want to transfer and hit upload or send. The software is rather self-explanatory. Once the site is up on the web, check for links that are not working, or slow download times. Way to go, you have completed your first website without all the technical wisdom. There are a few more details that you will run into, but this is like a crash course of something that is really rather simple.
c Copyright 2003 by R. Grisby
When you decide to tackle this task, just remember to take your time and plan everything out in advance. Do your research, and learn the basics of the three main software tools that are required. The tools are only as good as the user. If you become stuck or confused on a certain function, seek help. Customer support, chat rooms, or newsgroups. Remember the internet is a world of information. Use it to your advantage.
Follow these steps and you can impress your friends and family. Completing this will eventually get you labeled as a genius or whiz kid.
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