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Techniques to create a Website – Part 1/2

Welcome to the course! If you have any questions please send us an email: [email protected]

In this first part I will explain the steps that you need to follow before starting to work on your site, explore the applications that you’ll need and see how to choose and buy a domain.

Important! For this course you will not need to buy a domain or pay for hosting. You will use a work environment on your computer.

Since you don’t have to buy a domain or hosting, this first module will seem theoretical to you, but you need to know these steps in order to build sites in the future for you or for your clients. For the other modules we recommend you not only to read the material, but also to test every element on your workspace. Practice makes perfect and this is a learning by doing course.

Let’s begin.

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What do you need in order to create and publish a site?

  1. An HTML editor
  2. An image editor
  3. A domain or a subdomain
  4. Hosting
  5. Creativity, patience and attention to details.

 

HTML editors

HTML editors facilitate web page building. The most popular editor is Macromedia Dreamweaver (released in 1997). Starting with 2007 the application was distributed by Adobe, having the following versions: CS3, CS4, CS5, CS5.5, CS6 and CC (released in 2013).

You can download a trial version at: https://creative.adobe.com/products/dreamweaver

Logo Dreamweaver

You can also use free HTML editors like Notepad++ (available for download at: http://notepad-plus-plus.org/download/v.6.6.3.html) or  SublimeText (available for download at: http://www.sublimetext.com/download). Choose an editor and install it on your computer.

Image editors

Whether you want to create a logo for your site, to crop an existing image or to shrink it in size, you will need an image editor. The most popular image editor is Adobe Photoshop. You can find a trial version available for download at: https://creative.adobe.com/products/photoshop

Logo Photoshop

A good and free image editor is IrfanView which you can download at: http://www.infanview.com/main_download_engl.htm

Logo Irfanview

Install an image editor on your computer.

CMS

The next step in the evolution of web page building was the CMS. CMS = Content Management System

Content Management Systems are applications that facilitate the development of websites. Today all the websites are created using CMS. The most popular CMS applications are: WordPress, Joomla, Drupal, Typo3. All of which are free. You can add special features by installing free or paid plugins.

Logo WordPressLogo Joomla LogoDrupalLogo Typo3

 

From all CMS available we recommend you to use WordPress because it has the largest developer and user community and also a very large number of plugins. On the official site you can find over 48.000 free plugins (https://wordpress.org/plugins/) and over 4400 free themes (http://wordpress.org/themes/). It’s the most used CMS (over 60 million websites) in the World.

Throughout this course we will use WordPress to help us create websites.

How do I choose a domain?

The domain should be as short as possible and at the same time it should contain the keywords with which you want to be found on the Internet. If, for example you want to sell water pumps, the best domain for you is www.waterpumps.com. You can also buy www.water-pumps.com (it’s better if you buy this also).

A .br domain will be found by the users that search on Google and are located in Brazil. An .au domain will be found by the users that search Google and are located in Australia. If your site is dedicated to australians from Australia then the best domain for you  is .au. If it is dedicated to australians from the whole World then it’s recommended you use a .com domain.

The costs for most domains (ex .com, .net, .org) varies and it is paid per year.

There only a few TLDs  (top level domains) that have a fixed cost, for example the cost of a .ro domain is fixed to 51.26 USD (+24% VAT). In case you want a .ro domain then go to rotld.ro and you can buy one from there. These .ro domains are different also because you do not rent them per year but buy them for life. You have just that one fix price and no need to pay other yearly fees.

 

Where can I buy a domain?

Easy. Go to Godaddy.com.

Godaddy.com

I just searched for the domain www.mysite.website . GoDaddy tells me that it is taken, but suggests other options like www.thesite.website for 9.99 $ / year or www.mysites.website for 9.99 $ / year.

In the past years many new domain extensions were released  or  are announced to be released soon (more than 1000). So if you can not find the keyword that you want on .com and buy www.mykeywords.com you will surely find a very good alternative.

Check out the new domain extensions available on godaddy.com:

1

Hosting

After reserving a domain, the next step is to get a hosting subscription. There are a lot of companies that offer hosting.

We recommend hostgator.com – we work with them since 2006 and never had any problems. We do not recommend you use hostso, webhostingworld, or webfactor since we have feedbacks from clients that had problems with these hosting companies.

The hosting fee varies between 13 USD and 150 USD per year (depending on the company you choose).

Attention! For a WordPress based site you will need a Linux server (not Windows). The majority of available hosting servers offered by companies are Linux servers.

Question: Is it mandatory to have a hosting subscription ?

Answer: Yes, otherwise your site will not be visible on the Internet (except for this course since you will  practice on your work space).

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