In 1999, when I set out to build my first website I knew very little about html and even less about planning websites. Like a lot of Newbies I just struggled along learning as I went. I also knew very little about running a home business on the net. It is quite different than running a bricks and mortar store in some ways. I had run several business but never an online one. This article comes out of my personal school of hard knocks.
The first decision you must make is where you will host this new site. Do you want free web hosting? Here are some tips about choosing a free web host.
Try to go for the web hosts that have been around longer. If they already have a track record for longevity, chances are greater that they’ll be around for the life of your site. Hosts like these include:
and Hypermart http://www.hypermart.net>.
Please note that this is not an endorsement of these hosts nor is it any guarantee that they will last.
Make sure you know who owns the content of your site — you or the free web host. This is in the fine print — read it carefully before you click the submit button to create your account. When starting out often a free web host is within your budget. Until your business grows it is a good idea on the web, as with a bricks and mortar store, to keep the costs down. There are many good free hosting companies on the web. It’s your choice whether you want to host free or you would like to get a domain name now. It is all in the planning.
Next you will have to decide what kind of site you are building. Is it a business site? What are you planning to sell? These are essential questions when considering how you will want your site to look. If you are not going put up your site yourself you will have to hire a website designer. This makes it imperative to have a good plan in place before you start building the site of your dreams. Poor planning can cost you a lot of money and heartache.
Too often, having a Web site built turns into a nightmare of additions here, tweaks there and the eventual rejection of work done so far. You and your developer go back to the drawing board feeling resentful and angry — and you may feel a lot poorer.
I suggest that you get clear away from your computer and sit down with pen and paper. Write a business plan then after you have a clear goal and clear objectives in mind, go to a site such as Morebusiness.com http://www.morebusiness.com>, that have business plan forms and put it in writing there.
Sites such as HowtoAdvice.com http://www.howtoadvice.com/BusinessStartup> offer sound advice on how to start any business. Download some free ebooks written by established internet marketers and read them. There is some powerful information in them that can save you a lot of money and a lot of time. The small business administration is another good source of information on doing business both online and offline. You can read their startup guide online at the Empowerment Zone http://www.empowermentzone.com/fromhome.txt>.
One must decide where they are going before they can get there. It is important to do the planning *before* you even begin to build your site. If you want to go to Seattle don’t get on a plane for San Francisco.
Judi Singleton is the webmistress of Jassmine.com, Goto http://www.gotojassminesitenow.com,
and http://www.byjassmine.com. She publishes six ezines get some targeted advertising
Join her ezines now.