I launched my business. I am super excited about the future. Everyone is happy for me (or so I think)- they are all smiles. I have printed my business cards some fliers and started talking to businesses and potential clients. Hmm…they seem interested in what I do…
Something tells me I’m missing something. Ah..yes. I need be have a website. A business coach I respect says so. After all, how can I own a business for clients beyond my locale and have no website. Clearly it’s a no brainer- I need a website. But where do I begin?
I’ve seen many websites on the internet- millions of them.
How do they do it?
A quick Google search reveals that I can hire a website designer or design my website myself. Sweet.
I think I’d love to build my website myself. I saw a few videos on youtube on how to create websites from the scratch in under 1 hour!
I will do this myself.
Where it all Begins
My website is like a house. A house needs to be on a property owned by a landlord and has a address for easy location. To stay in my current place, I pay a yearly rent to my landlord. Similarly, for my website to be identified and found by people, I has to be hosted by a landlord – a webhost, and will need an address – a Domain Name.
There are thousands of webshosts on the internet who host websites for businesses like mine. I want one that’s in Nigeria and will cater to my needs. So I search for some Nigerian webhosts and voila! I think I’ve found my choice. The plan is good and the pay is just within budget. I make my decision based on storage and bandwidth- two crucial factors I hear are responsible for a super or horrible website navigation experience.
The storage capacity determines how much data I can upload to my website for visitors to access. Videos, audios, and Images can easily consume space. I’m selecting a storage space of 20GB at this time. I don’t see myself exhausting that capacity in a year. In any case, if that happens, I can simply upgrade my hosting plan- yeah It will cost me a little extra. But if the need arises, I sure know what to do.
The bandwidth determines how fast my website will go irrespective of the number of simultaneous user access. I believe the bandwidth on my present storage capacity will do just fine.
Who’s ready to build his own first website? I know I am.
CMS or Hard Coding?
I am a huge fan of ease of use. I have seen several arguments for and against CMS and Hard coded websites. One thing I have observed to be consistent with the two is that you need softwares to hardcode a website as well as to build on CMS (Content Management Systems). My use case it seems favors CMS. I hear WordPress is super cool and has enough options to help me achieve my dream site. Let’s get started.
Setting up WordPress
Setting up WordPress is pretty straightforward as you will see in the video below
That was pretty cool right?
Your next step now is to start building your website just the way you like it. You may find it helpful to draw inspiration from the websites of other businesses you admire. That way your question will revolve around ‘what plugins?’ you will require for specific functions and tasks on your website.
Now there are millions of plugins and templates out there to choose from, so take your time and be sure you have a pretty good idea of the basic functionality your website must have. Start from there and work your way up. I have found that approach to be quicker and efficient as it helps me get the website online in as little as 48 hours or less!! Yep, you read that right.
Creating the ultimate website is a matter of context, your own context. Your context is determined by what you hope to achieve with your website. That said, you only have to bother yourself with the essential parts that come together to make your website functional like ours. To do this as explained above, you need a hosting plan, a domain name, a CMS and a few necessary plugins and you are good to go.
I’ve tried to make this as brief as possible. If you found it helpful, kindly share with your friends and colleagues.
If you have questions you would like answered, be sure to ask in the comments below. I’ll be happy to answer them.