For the uninitiated, the process of starting a Website can be filled with new terminology. Here is a quick vocabulary lesson of some of the used here.
- Domain Name ("register a domain name"): Sign up and pay for the URL to the homepage of your site.
- Host/Hosting ("sign up with a host"): This is the company that will have your files on its server and provide the means for people to be able to see your Website. Make sure you pick a good host because you don't want to have to move this later.
- Nameservers ("link them together using the nameservers"): This is information that tells the domain name services where to find your hosting service’s server.
Note that with some solutions you take care of all three of the above at once. Other solutions require you to handle each separately.
Steps To Getting Started – Overview
During the process of getting your Website started, there are many steps to complete. Many you will be completing simultaneously. Also, please note that if you do not have a Website developer, you would complete all steps on your own.
Initial Administrative Steps
- Register your domain names.
- Decide on a Website developer and choose designs or template.
- Choose a hosting provider, with input from your Website designer, and open account.
- Change the nameservers on your domain name to point to your host’s nameservers.
Initial Marketing Steps
- Decide on the purpose of your Website; the way(s) it will help you with your business, book, or service(s); and what kinds of people you want to visit the site (target audience).
- For better success with Website ranking, complete keyword research so – from the start – you can incorporate those words into the text on your Website.
- Create Website launch strategies and a marketing plan while site is in development.
- Begin marketing activities as soon as Website is functional.
- Settle on site layout and navigational structure.
- Create or choose images – Website header/logo, photo(s), book cover(s), etc. and send digitally to developer.
- Write text for each page (incorporating phrases from keyword research) and send to developer.
- If taking orders online, decide on e-commerce solution (Paypal recommended to start, then upgrade to merchant account after volume increases) and work with developer on details.
- With developer, decide upon and secure any third party services or software needed to implement marketing programs (For example: newsletter hosting/list management service, blogging software, online audio/mp3 technology, etc.)
Site Finalization and Publication
- Approve the final Website.
- Upload the site to your hosting account.
- Begin marketing activities.