Running a business without building a web site, is like a fish swimming in a small pond. The fish needs a vehicle to reach the ocean. If you are a small business person who wants to reach millions quickly and easily, building a web site is a necessity. There are many ways to build a website but Ill just give you an overview of the most popular ones.
Before you begin to build your web site, register a domain first (do it here). This means you are serious about your business.
1.Web Site Templates - Free and Paid
This is a quick and simple way to design your site without spending a dime. With a free web site template, you can add text and graphics and host it on a free web host.
Free - these will give you a quick and simple design.
Paid Templates - generally these provide better looking designs.
Pros - quick set-up, saves time on design time.
Cons - lack of uniqueness and flexibility, not custom built to suit
2. ISP Site Builders
Some ISPs provide site building software as part of their package i.e. AOL, Bigstep.com.
Pros - "all-in-one" package, no html required. This may consist of just site building (AOL), or a combination of site building, hosting, search engine submissions and newsletter management (Bigstep) for one monthly fee.
Cons - template pages, page links generically named, pages cant be individually optimized for search engines.
3. Learn HTML
This will allow you to build your web site from scratch and have total control over any changes you may wish to make.
Pros - total control, flexibility, inexpensive (you can even use the text editor, notepad, that comes with your computer).
Cons - steep learning curve to become proficient, takes a lot of time to change hundreds of pages.
4. Use ApplauZ Online Website Builder
- 800+ design templates to choose from
- 30 day Money-back Guarantee
- MS Word like Web Page Editor (WYSIWYG)
- If you can browse you can build
- Unlimited updates
- Do it all online ... no other tools needed.
Starting at only $1.99/month ... Check it out here
5. Use Web Editing Tools
There are two kinds of web site editors.
a) HTML Editors - these will help you with writing and editing your html (i.e. automating repetitive tags and color coding the different tags used).
Macromedia Homesite (www.macromedia.com/software/homesite)
b) WYSIWYG (what-you-see-is-what-you-get) editors These graphical editors will help you to design a professional looking web site after a lot of practice. Here are the two most popular editors. These editors also allow you to see the code as you design your site. You can also manipulate the code within the editor.
Dreamweaver MX (www.macromedia.com/software/dreamweaver)
Pros - complete control over the design and maintenance of your website, can write or edit code as you please, maintain hundreds of pages, many useful features.
Cons - can be expensive, learning curve, some WYSIWYG editors add unnecessary code, creating bloated web pages.
6. Browser Software Netscape Composer (www.netscape.com)
Netscape has always had a basic Web page editor built-in. Netscape 7s version of Composer fills a huge gap at the lower end of the market for WYSIWYG editors and still has something useful for the more experienced designer.
Pros - free, easy to use
Cons - some learning curve needed, lack of features and integration with graphics software, when compared with other high-end web design editors.
7. SiteBuildIt (http://quicktour.sitesell.com/applauz.html)
This is an all-in-one system of tools to build, host and promote your web site. It includes one year of:
Domain name registration
Web Site Hosting
Graphic Tools (LogoCreator and NavBar creator)
Search Engine Optimization
Automatic Search Engine Submission and Re-submission
Pay-Per-Click Search Engine Research
Traffic Stats and Click Analysis
E-zine Subscription and Delivery
Cost: approx $300/year
Pros - all-in-one solution for creating, promoting and analyzing your web site, no need to learn html, add your own text and graphics.
Cons - use of template generated web pages, lack of business uniqueness, limited flexibility over html code, expensive.
8. Professsional Web Site Designer
If you choose a professional web designer, make sure he has the qualifications and at least several years experience designing web sites. Take a look at his portfolio to give you some idea of the sites that have already been designed. (Check out our professional web site design services here).
Working with a specialist in designing and optimizing websites.
Professional image for your business
Years of experience building, optimizing and promoting web sites.
Saves time - leaves you time to concentrate on building your business while the technical aspects and maintenance of your web site is taken care of.
Can be expensive
You have less control (must work with your designer).
If you want to build it yourself and have the time to do it, then learn some html and invest in a professional web editor. Learning html will enable you know whats wrong with your site (particularly when a web site editor doesnt write proper html or adds unnecessary tags). The editor is very helpful if you have to maintain a large web site that contains hundreds of pages.
If you dont have much time and wish to do-it-yourself without learning html, then download a web template.
If you dont want to learn html and want an all-in-one solution for building, hosting, promoting and web traffic analysis, then SiteBuiltIt is a great way to go.
Hiring a Professional Web Site Designer
This will save you a lot of time instead of doing it yourself. You can also be assured of having a professionally designed web site built to reflect your business. A good web designer will know how to build a web site that sells, which is the ultimate goal for your business. (Check out our professional web site design services here).
read more about simple website editing here.