So you want a website

Already you have two options, either do it yourself or have someone do it for you.
Which ever one you choose there are a few things you need to do before you get started.

This may sound obvious but the first question you need to answer is what do you want to do with your website.
Sit down and plan your site on a piece of paper, ask the following questions.
What pages do you want?
What do you want on these pages?


Build it for me

Answering those questions will determine how much your site will cost you, Dynamic websites are more expensive than Static websites, and even Static websites have varying costs based on your requirements, the most obvious being the amount of pages on your site.

That brings us to the difference between Static and Dynamic websites, a Static website is like the site you are looking at now, it is manually updated as needed.
A Dynamic site uses a database to dynamically change the content of the website based on selections made by the person browsing, a shopping cart is normally dynamic.

Website developers normally charge per page, or have a set price for a set number of pages, so what is a page?
Each time you click on a link or button that shows new content it is a new page.

One way of having a site built is telling the developer "I want a 10 page static website for my lemonade stand, this is my information" , to easy.
The result of this approach is finding out what you want, when you don't get it.

The best way is showing the developer exactly what you want, an easy way to do this is to "build" your site in a word document and send it to the developer, or send a link to a website that you like the design of,why not do both.
This way the developer has a better idea of what you want and can design accordingly.

When choosing a web developer to build your site, shop around, look at their own website first, if they neglect their own website how well will they do with yours?
Also check their reference sites.


Do it yourself

Start off simple you can always add on later.

You need three things to build a website.
1) A host for your web site.
2) A Web page editor.
3) An ftp app to upload your site to the web.



Hosting
If you are just playing around go for a free host like Yola, but if you are at all serious about your website go for paid hosting, Gridhost has a starter option for only R8-95 (ZAR) per month.
Have a look at the hosting page for more info.

Web editor
The best option to build your first site is to use a WYSIWYG editor. (What You See Is What You Get)
It allows you to drag and drop items on your page and makes website building a breeze.
There are many free editors available and even though most of them claim to be easy, very few actually are, so keep on trying till you find one that you like.
See the tools page for links and more info.

FTP
Some web editors have ftp capabilities built in, or you can use a ftp application to upload your web pages.
See the tools page for links and more info.

First Get the tools then move on to Tips on building your first website



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