Understanding fully how to create host and market web sites before you start is one of the keys to web page success. This article is an overview of the various steps needed to build your own web page, to create an easy web site.
The steps you see here are in a different order to what you’ll see elsewhere. This is because we want you to create a successful web site, one that is ranked highly in the search engines and is professional. Personal web pages can use the same techniques, although the SEO section may not be that critical to you.
Planning and Evaluation of Your Needs
Think of this as a business plan. Before you start, think about what you want from your website. What will be its primary purpose?
Profile your customers – who are they, what are their needs?
Choose the theme / topic.
Look at your budget, the facilities and technical components you’ll need.
The theme can be also determined by keyword research – see Search Engine Optimisation below.
How will you make money from your web site?(if that is your aim)
Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
When a user types certain keywords into a search engine, many thousands of web pages can result. SEO is used to get a better search engine rank, to be positioned higher in those results. SEO can mean the difference between a site with little or no traffic, and a popular site. The reason SEO should be done at this stage is because it will help decide many of your choices from now on.
SEO can even help determine the topic or theme of your site, by looking at the supply and demand of keywords people use to find your site.
Web Site Hosting
A web page hosting service hosts your website on its server, so that it can be accessed on the internet via a browser.
There are many different packages, facilities and companies. Deciding on your budget, concept and components first will help decide the package and host you choose.
Most web hosting services can also register your internet domain name, some include this in the package.
Web Site Design
Plan your site’s overall structure and navigation.
Pre-plan each separate page’s visual appearance and functions.
Gather together or write your content.
Avoid Bad Design elements - what turns people off a web site.
Web Site Building Tools
There are many tools you can use to help you, including website builders, traffic statistic counters, forums, color coders, ebook cover creators, image libraries, adding dynamic headlines and news, site search boxes, scripts for interactive forms, logo and banner creators, metatag generators, scrolling status bars and many more.
Create Web Site
Once you know how you want your site to look and what you want it to do, it’s time to actually create or build it. Here is where you add web pages, insert colours, tables, forms, text, images etc. Then proofread, adjust and publish (upload to a server)
Web Site Marketing
Besides the search engines, there are many other ways to increase your site’s traffic.
Traffic for a website can be compared to location for an offline business, and the principle is the same - if no-one can find you, you won’t get much business. So you’ll need a web site marketing strategy.
Getting your site listed on many other websites can increase web site traffic, especially if your site title and description contains your search engine optimised keywords.
While you can outlay a lot of money for this, there are many free resources as well, and many ways to do it.
Can include checking for broken links, monitoring traffic statistics and updating content with fresh information. As in normal marketing, through trial and error, aspects of the site may need to be changed to improve performance.
Written by Margo Courtney, author of the ‘How To Build Web Sites’ tutorial. It explains in plain english, and step by step, how to create, host and market web sites. The complete tutorial can be viewed at http://www.how-to-build-web-sites.com and its aim is web page success. She also designs and builds web sites, and offers other web site services.