In the first portion of this mini series, I discussed finding and choosing a domain name, as well as hosting and things to consider. Today, I am going to build on what I discussed in part 1. I realized that I had left some important information out regarding domains and hosting. An important thing to remember is that you can purchase your domains and hosting from different places. For instance, if you buy your domains at Godaddy.com, you can host the domain with another company. This is really easy and is integrated into most hosting companies.
After clearing that matter up, and after selecting your domain name(s) and hosting, next on the agenda is deciding what you want to accomplish with your site. This all revolves around what you want to accomplish. Maybe you are a painter and you want to set up an online gallery, with the ability to sell prints of your work, or even the originals as well. You might want to start a new blog, to share knowledge with others or to post family information and events for get-togethers. You might be a photographer or graphic designer or any other profession, and you might want to post a portfolio of your work to show to potential clients. The possibilities are endless.
For an e-commerce site, there are many solutions out there to sell your products. There are several third party products available, as well as software that integrates e-commerce into your site. You can also choose to set up Paypal buttons if you prefer paypal. You are going to want to organize the images of your products, and keep them in one folder. On the web, it is essential for consumers to be able to clearly see your products. It is also a good idea to have a hi and low res version handy so that they will be able to have an enlarged view to see details if needed.
If you are going to show off art, design or photography work, you are going to want to decide how you want to organize your work, if there will be additional information, or if your work with speak for itself. You will want to consider how large you want your site to be, and how many images you want visible at one time. It will be a good idea to look at some different sites to get an idea of how you want your gallery to look. There are various plug-ins for Photoshop, and in Lightroom, there are gallery options included, so depending on what software you have, you can create some interesting galleries quickly and easily.
If you are going to start a blog, then you are going to want to look for blogging software, such as WordPress or Blogger, so that you can install the necessary files on your hosting account. After installation, you still have to search for a template or theme that will fit your blog. If you go this route, you are going to have to brush up or have some basic knowledge about html and css so that you can edit the files. If you want to edit the images or areas of color, then you are going to need an image editor. Gimp is an affordable one if you do not have Photoshop. If you are happy with the theme, then you will not need an image editor, you can just leave it as is.
There is a lot to cover on each type of site that you can make, so the next articles on this subject are each going to be broken down into different types of sites. These will most likely each be multi-part tutorials, covering different options and techniques to achieve different results.