How To Build A Fast Easy Website
How To Build A Fast Easy Website
The world today is shifting to an online setting, almost every personality, company, business, organisation and many others have a website showcasing their portfolios, products, address and contacts. Many are even built to be dynamic and interactive. This article is not to teach you in detail step by step on how to build a website as that’s a very broad topic for another time, but rather how to select the right easy tools for building your site and how to go about it.
Many people and organizations lately want a website, but there are very many disturbing and often unanswered questions such as, what type of website to build, what program or language to use HTML5, CSS or PHP, what CMS to use, where to host it and how much, ASP.NET or SQL and many others. Hopefully at the end of this article you will have at least a brief idea about websites, which ones are easiest to build, the ones that offer the fastest and most complex ability and a few other basics. I assume that you have already purchased a domain name for your website such as site.com, site.net, site.org, site.co.ug, etc from your web host. Some web hosts offer this as a free service along with unlimited email.
To begin with, the most important for anyone who wishes to start a website is to identify what you want the website to be about, is it going to be a business (corporate), news, blog, eCommerce or shopping website, media and downloads, photography or tech, membership or sign-up site. Whatever the category you choose, you should follow it up with the way you want it to operate and brief outlines of the content you wish it to have and arrangement. This will speed up the building process in future. Many web developers undermine this stage, but it’s largely the reason why some designers are able to build a very good page much faster than others without a plan to look back to and follow.
If you are good at the languages I mentioned above, the best web development programs you could use are; Macromedia Dreamweaver, Microsoft Expression Web Studio, Xara Web Designer and CoffeeCup Visual Studio. The only problem with Microsoft Expression Web Studio is that majority of your web projects will use ASP.NET and MySQL whose databases are not really friendly with every host provider out there despite them being the easiest to build. Most of the Web Hosts support SQL sites which are the most common, very few offer Microsoft server compatible spaces. The choice here is yours.
If you are not much of a code or complicated design program fan, majority of the people out there fall under this, I would suggest you try out using the most common website CMSes such as Drupal, WordPress, Joomla, Pligg, Dolphin, Ox, the list is endless. To be honest the simplest here is WordPress which started out formally as a blog open source free community but has over time tried to include website capabilities, social networks through Buddy Press. It is a really wonderful tool with lots of community maintained plugins, I would encourage those building quick, urgent, small and simple websites to use this.
For those who have some more time on their hands and want to build more advanced and probably corporate websites, they can use Drupal and Joomla. Joomla is easier than Drupal but slower because of its heavy plugins, but really looks so beautiful with its colors and designs. Drupal on the other hand has all these features but is really hard to learn and complicated despite efforts to simplify it, it looks really cool and earns you credit for professionalism once you learn it plus it has several themes and categorised packages for communities, enterprise, blog, church. Pligg, Dolphin and Ox are for social networks that would look like MySpace, Dolphin even has a Facebook like Chat bar at the bottom. Pligg is more of a social news network where members post news and share it and other members read and vote on it.
The coolest and best thing about CMSes is that they are open source and free. They have so many free plugins, themes, free manuals, support groups and are easy to learn.
By this time I suppose you know what tools to use to build your website. We now have the plan, domain name, the tools and probably a built site with some content and a web host. The best web hosts should range from around $3 – $5 a month for even unlimited bandwidth, unlimited email addresses, unlimited space/ storage, unlimited sub – domains, support, and I suggest paying for a year or more, you get a discount.
Now your site is up, just remember to ask you web host to help you and configure your SEO status and Site XML map so as to improve your search engine rankings or position and traffic. Later you can consider adding Google Adsense to commercialise your website or blog.
The writer of this article is a web developer for Innovware, a Ugandan Online Software and Internet company; Newslibre, News, media and Publishing and Mozilla Uganda. He is also a Mozilla Rep.
Lawk is a mozillian, director at Innovware and consults part time for Every1Mobile.
He loves open source, the open web, writing, reading and developing literacy tools that can teach the youth around the world especially in East Africa.