You know your idea needs a great website, but where and how to start building a site? There are an overwhelming amount of options for web hosting available, which makes the task even more daunting. Who to trust with your online presence? I regularly meet small business owners, especially artrepreneurs, who don’t even have a website. And that’s a shame. Even with no computer skills you can have a great looking website, and I’m going to show you how – without getting too technical. If you can manage to read this post, you can build your own site.
Start with asking yourself some questions.
Building a website doesn’t have to be complicated. But before you start ask yourself the following questions. Keep your answers simple and to the point. Each answer shouldn’t be more than a sentence (maybe two).
- Why do you want a website? Decide what the purpose of your site is going to be. Don’t overcomplicate it. It’s great to have a full-blown e-commerce site with abilities to sell your work online, but if you have nothing today your first step should be to create a simple online presence, like an online business card. It gets you started and puts you on the map. The fancy stuff can come later.[space]
- What am I going to put on my site? After you decide why you want a site, what you’ll put on it is going to be derived from your site’s purpose. Again, keep it short and simple. What is the one key thing you do as an entrepreneur or artist. Even as an artist you’ll have a core business. Decide what that is, and structure the content of your site around it. Provide some background information about you to make it personable, but not too much.[space]
- Who is going to visit your brand new website? You’re not making a site for everyone. Of course the whole wide world can visit your page, but decide who your target audience is. Imagine a perfect person visiting your site – what would they look like, how old are they, male or female? Now design and write your content as if you were writing it (in an email) for this perfect person. Make it easy for them to understand what you’re saying, and find the content they are looking for on your page.[space]
- Where is my site going to live? Once you have the answers to the questions above, it’s surprisingly easy to create a unique website, blog or online store. But your new site will need a web host, a place to live. There’s just too many web hosting companies available these days. They all promise to be awesome, but once you sign up you learn the sales pitch often quickly falls apart.[space]
Don’t delay any more – get started TODAY
Don’t delay. You’ve waited long enough. You can start building your site while you work through the questions above. Many answers you’ll find while doing the “construction” work.
Here’s two excellent options to help you get started. Unlike most of the other review articles you’ll read, I’ve worked with both of these companies myself and I’m sharing from those experiences.
I want a great website without the skills
One hosting company that jumps out a bit from the rest, even if it were just for their funky website design and the fact that their entire operation is windmill powered, is Fatcow. They’re not really meant for big companies, but if you want a personal or small business website it might be worth looking around their farm.
Here’s what I like most about them:
- Simple but full-featured control panel
- Perfect for beginners and intermediates
- Comes with a drag-and-drop site-builder
- 100% windmill powered web hosting
I know what I’m doing and I want a bit more control
If you want some more advanced controls, have a look at Bluehost. They’re a more traditional hosting company, offering features like cPanel control panels, Cron access and more custom scripting languages. If you don’t know what that means, you probably won’t need it.
Here’s what I like most about them:
- cPanel, Cron and scripting access
- Optimized for WordPress blogs
- Advanced support available
- Money back guarantee
Please sign up via the buttons and links on this page – it gets you a special promotional rate, and me a referral bonus to keep my coffee machine running. Thank you!
A bit about my background
Admitted – I’m a bit of a geek. I’ve worked in IT for many years, so for me building my own website is the obvious thing to do. Sometimes I get help from a freelance designer to save me some time on the more difficult stuff, but most of my online presence I built myself. It’s part of the fun, and I like doing it. On occasion I’ll even help some people to build theirs.
I’ve worked with many hosts that overload their server with way too many accounts, causing the server to fail and my site to suffer. There’s been a time where I paid for an expensive advertising campaign to drive traffic to my site while the host was down. My advertising dollars got me nothing. I should have thrown my money in a lake somewhere and I would have at least enjoyed the ripple effect for a while.
I wrote this post to share some of my experience, and help you get started with creating or improving your own website. Let me know if my post helped you in any way, and feel free to share it using the links below.