I remember the first time I thought of launching a website. It was 2009.
I always loved to share my point of view and I had tons of stories to tell. I came through one of those kind of lives that if I wasn't sane, I'd think I was a cat.
I used about seven of the nine lives.
I've been very lucky (cool word for blessed).
I was involved in a couple of crazy car accidents. One of the most terrifying ones had to have been that time I went through a windshield of a Nissan Pathfinder, and after being ejected onto the expressway at 65 miles per hour - all I can remember is jumping into the front seat that night before it all happened.
I was 19.
I have not been able to recover the memories of the accident or the incidents prior. The doctor said this happened due to one of two things:
1. Physical brain damage from the hit. (I am a little crazy - but as far as I recall I've always been that way!).
2. I have a sort of psychological block referred to as "selective amnesia."
I think there's another proper medical term for this condition but you get my drift. It seems the way God made us is like this; anything too traumatic or difficult for us to handle will be wiped out. Code "delete."
To be honest, I'm grateful for that. I see the loss of such a tragic incident as a blessing really. Though it kind of screwed up a part of my story telling because I'm not able to give those important details - but oh boy do I have more stories to tell.
Back to what this all has to do with creating a website....
I knew I had to have a website to build on, tell my stories, write my self-help articles, and help others launch their passions and dream businesses online - so I started by researching web developers.
(This was long before I learned to build website myself - yes I can do now) > I found a nice woman in Canada who said she'd create my website for $7,000.
Okay, get up off the floor and pick your device up....
She did it for $5,000. It was a nice experience but very stressful because no one seems to tell us the WHOLE truth before they take you in as a client - not back then anyway.
It's not the website launching that's challenging. It's knowing what you want before attempting to launch one.
You don't have to know everything but there are a few documents that should be prepared before you go to your wallet. This is the part I didn't consider.
What did I want on my website???
Well at the time I was working in film and television and I owned a company called "Dream Talent, Inc." I supplied production companies with talent for various productions. I also performed a range of creative duties that we could classify as a sort of "concierge" service.
So, there were a few things I needed to collect to provide the content for each page. Then I needed to determine how many pages I needed based in part on what I wanted to display - and what the was norm out there in the digital universe.
It was a lot to absorb all at once, especially when I was so excited to simply get a website. Of course learning all of this at once set me back. I left everything up to the developer. (expensive)!
I had no experience owning a website and she wanted the job so she went ahead and created the pages she thought I'd need.
$5,000 and a few weeks later this huge complicated file was delivered to my home by mail - there were about 15 cds in the box, maybe more. I couldn't tell you where they are today.
I never did run that website. I saw it once or twice because it was beautiful - but I had no idea about the components it took to run one, put less edit it when I needed to.
THANKKKKK Goodness those complicated days are over.
Today you can have your own website up in a couple of days, with front end access, hosting, a beautiful design, tutorials up the wazoo - and your dream e-commerce business up and running, displayed to millions of users and potential clients, easily.
So, if you’ve decided to make the leap and start your own website! That’s fantastic news!
And it is my goal today to make sure you're not stuck trying to figure out how to get started.
Future web guru, you’ve surfed yourself to the right place. I'm going to break the website ownership shebang down for you RIGHT NOW - in 5 simple steps.
You or anyone you know can use these 5-steps to launch a website in 7 days.
Before we get into the 5 steps, let's briefly go over the pre-website stuff:
There are a few preparations you want to take care of first, so when you get to the website business you're ready to plug in your content and go.
Talented Application creators have made it possible to own and run a website without knowing any code or css or any complicate programs. It's so much easier and possible than in 2009 when I spent that $5,000.
Decide how many pages you want now.
My recommendation is to start with 3 pages, or if you're really simple you can pull this launch off with just 2.
Page 1 is where you will put your HOME page.
(Note: You can create as many pages as you want. It costs you nothing once you own your site. This is just where you should start off. We'll get into pages in another article - so Subscribe now using the form below so you can keep up with how I keep up! Ha!)
Your homepage is your virtual front door.
It's where you'll greet your visitors and tell them all about YOU.
Of course if you're creating a professional page from where you plan to sell to the public, you want to limit your intro to things about yourself that compliment or highlight your best characteristics and proof that you're a good person to do business with in the area you're representing 🙂
Some website owners like to add "testimonials," or some kind of social proof to the bottom of their homepage to let their visitors know they have experience and happy clients or customers who appreciate their work.
Think about some of the people you can call up to write you a 3- sentence praise.
Page 2 is where you want to add your BLOG because in this digital era people want to read what you have to say concerning the products, topics, or niche you're representing with your website.
Your Blog is where you get to show off your wisdom and knowledge about your area of interest. Do it well.
Do you know how many people I worked with who didn't realize they needed this to be mapped out before getting to the website.
I mean, it's not like an apartment where you can move in and sleep on the floor until you can afford a sofa.
But then again, it is somewhat. You want to start with this basic info then build your website as you go along.
So, at the very least spend some time writing out your homepage bio, choose a few products or write out the details of the service you plan to provide, and start hiring help to write some of your blog articles now.
I show you how here.
Let’s move on to the fun stuff!
When it comes to choosing your domain name, there are a couple of important factors to consider.
You will want something that's easy for people to remember, and something that's relevant to your business.
Don’t worry too much if your exact business name is already taken. Be creative! If you’re looking for ideas, try one of the many free domain name generators available!
Once you have your perfect domain name chosen, head over to your favorite domain registrar to register it before someone else does!
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Now that you have a domain name, it’s time to host your website somewhere.
Many domain registrars also offer hosting services, but there's no requirement for you to use those. Shop around for the best.
Webhosting services generally come in two varieties, shared and dedicated hosting.
Shared hosting is much cheaper and might be a good option for you in the beginning. Dedicated hosting is more robust, but will cost you more.
Interested in the best web hosting services in 2019? Check out this great article.
A picture is worth a thousand words. This expression has never been more true than it is with your website. No one wants to read blocks of text over and over.
They want pictures!
Are you a photographer? If so, great! If not, don’t worry too much. There are plenty of websites to source amazing photography for any website.
Resist the urge to simply grab any photo you want from a Google image search. Most web images are licensed and you’re setting yourself up for a major headache if you start doing this.
Instead, stick to legitimate stock photo sites.
(or, hire someone to do it for you)
I mentioned this earlier. Scroll back here to read this article when you're done, or bookmark it for later. I love being your go to person!
How many times have you heard “Content is King” when people talk about creating a successful website? There must be a reason for this. There is. It’s true!
Without quality content, your website has nothing to offer visitors. And without visitors, your website won’t last very long.
The easiest way to get the ball rolling is to just sit down and start writing. Let those creative juices flow!
If you don’t consider yourself much of a writer, or you just need a little help with getting the content posted, consider hiring someone to give you a hand. With a little effort you can find a co-writer to match your efforts, and before you know it you'll be pumping out A+ content.
The article you're reading now is a co-effort between myself (Michelle) and Stepen Belyea (from Canada)! Ha!
If you follow the pre-website nugget above and these 5- simple steps, then guess what?
It’s time to launch your new website!
Click publish on that article you create and announce to the world that you're ready for a flood of visitors!
Ready to Take Your Website to the Next Level but don't want to do it alone? We're helping novice solo-preneurs like yourself launch their new websites online every day! We'll teach you the most important component of a successful website >>> HOW TO FIND YOUR AUDIENCE!!
You CAN launch your website in 7 days or less!
Congratulations for taking BIG steps toward your dream of owning a website! The fun is only just beginning, though. Soon it'll be time to grow your audience and that takes planning, diligence, and your commitment.
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