Are You Ready to Start Your Online Business?


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So now that you've thought long and hard about starting your own online home business you'll need to take the first steps to getting started. Below I've suggested a place to visit to help you on your way. You don't have to use this resource, as it's only a suggestion. There are many other similar resources on the web which I'm sure are just as good.

A decent HTML editor is necessary for creating your own website. I use First Page 2000 which can be found at EVR SOFT Once you've downloaded this or another WYSIWYG (what you see is what you get) website editor then play around with it until you feel comfortable enough to start your first web page. The help files are very useful to read though I stress, play around with it for yourself, as this is the best way to learn.

There are four different levels that you can choose from when opening First Page 2000, which are ‘Easy’ ‘Normal’ ‘Expert’ and ‘Hardcore’. I recommend starting with the ‘Easy’ mode and working your way up.

Try creating a very simple test homepage to begin with for example:

This is my home page where I am going to fill it with useful text, only one or two pictures, very little JavaScript, no tables as I am going to progress to use CSS files and quite a few text links pointing to exactly where they say they are pointing.

If you don't understand what the above is about and at this stage I should think you don't, otherwise you wouldn't need to read this, then don't worry. Just remember to save the above paragraph to use as a guide every time you create a web page.

Tips to remember when creating your website:

No 1: Keep it simple. Average users usually surf the Internet and send emails. They are not too interested in flashy gimmicks on your website or how clever you are by adding unnecessary bits and pieces. Google, the Internet's top search engine at the moment and for the foreseeable future, is very plain and simple to use though obviously very complicated underneath.

No 2: Make it as user friendly as possible. Let your potential customers see where they are at all times and keep a constant navigation bar at the top of every page. Ensure that your shopping cart has as few clicks as possible leading to the final payment click.

No 3: Don't have the usual ‘You need to register before you can purchase’. This is a sure way to scare off your potential customers.

No 4: Clearly display your contact details on every page, real world business address, email address and landline contact telephone number.

No 5: A clear ‘Guarantee and returns policy’. Customers need to have confidence in your products. If you don't show the policy it looks like you don't have confidence in your product so why should they?

Tony Pollitt is the director of Duvets online which, since it's creation in April 2005, has rapidly grown into a thriving online business.


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