How to Set up a Simple Website - Create/Register a Domain Name
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Once you've decided upon a website topic, you need to select a domain name for your website. A domain name is the .com, .net, .info, etc. name, which is used to identify your website online. It's important to choose a good domain name for your website, because it can play a part in getting search engine traffic to your site in the future.
Some experts believe that a relevant domain name can play a bigger part in search position than meta tags (hidden relevancy tags on a website) do. So try to select a name which describes your website well, and try to keep it as short as possible so that people can remember it easily. There are entire articles on selecting domain names on this website, so feel free to explore those articles for more detailed tips on selecting a good name.
There are a variety of different companies with which you can select and register your domain name. These companies are known as domain name registrars. Go to a search engine and type in "domain registration," and see how many results come up. I registered my domain through GoDaddy.com, because they make it easy and offer some other nice tools for building websites. There are many other companies for which you can register a domain, so feel free to shop around. In fact, it may be a good idea to shop around, as you'll probably notice huge variations in price. Registering a domain name should not be tremendously expensive.
I have one more quick tip on domain names. Try to select a .com name rather than a .net, .info, .org, etc. The reason for this is that .com is the most popular, and therefore that is what people will probably use when searching for your site. For instance, if your site name is google.net, and someone heard about your site and went to visit it, they would probably type in google.com first. They would go to the other website and not yours. This is not a real example, but hopefully you get the picture. (In one notorious case, someone running an adult website once registered whitehouse.com, relying on the traffic they would receive from everyone trying to reach whitehouse.gov but typing in .com out of habit).
Design the Website
Once you have the concept for the website and have registered a domain name for it, it is time to actually design the website itself. This can be accomplished a few different ways, and it will vary with each person's own web design experience. Experienced web designers would probably use a web design program such as CoffeeCup or Dreamweaver to design their site. If you have very little, or no web design experience, you may want to choose an easier route. Because I didn't have a lot of experience with web design when I first created a website, I chose the easier route.
The easy way to design a website is to use a pre-designed web template. You can find nice website templates all over the Internet; some are even free to use. In most cases, these website templates allow you to create a website with little or no HTML knowledge. I did not have a lot of money when I was setting up my website, so I chose to use Website Tonight to create my website for free. Website Tonight is a website template site which makes building a website as easy as using Microsoft Word. I received free Website Tonight credits when I registered my domain name with GoDaddy.com. These freebies really come in handy, and they can save you a lot money. When searching for a domain name registering company, keep an eye out for these kind of freebies.
So, it took me about a day or two to design my website and fill it with some good content. My website is designed to sell health books, and it has done a good job at that for about a year now. You can see an example of my site at www.promotehealth.info. My site is very basic, but it is still effective at its purpose, which is to inform and to sell e-books. You don't need to spend hundreds of dollars designing a website in order for it to be effective. My site is a simple 5-page website which works well. The only monetary investment I've made is the $8 on the domain name registration.
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