Creating a Website

Create a Website

Creating a website/blog and sharing your thoughts, knowledge and ideas with others can be done for pure pleasure, money, or both. It can either be a passive income business model or something that requires a lot of time and dedication. Once your website is set up, you can decide whether it requires regular updates and new content or not. What’s great about creating a website/blog is that it can be done at anytime and anywhere in the world.

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Steps To Make It Happen

Set Up

The first and most important step is setting up your website correctly. There are many website building platforms, hosting companies and domain companies to choose from. Each platform and company provides different user experiences, packages, and prices. You’ll want to choose wisely before diving in.

 

Choosing a Platform

There are several website builders out there and picking the right one will make the biggest difference. Here are a list of the top 10 website builders:

  1. WordPress is the most popular platform out there but takes a bit more time to learn. It’s an open source platform meaning any developer can create their own templates, plugins, tools and share them with others. For this reason, they have the largest community of websites, plugins, tools, etc. One of the disadvantages is that the templates, plugins, and tools can be either great or terrible.
  2. WIX is a quick and easy way to build a website for those less experienced. Wix is not an open source platform so all of its templates and tools are developed by an internal team. They have many nice templates and quality apps that can add functions to your website. When it comes to SEO, Wix is not favored as much in Google or other search engines.
  3. Squarespace is similar to WIX but uses HMTL5 so you can customize your addresses and URL. This means it’s a lot more SEO friendly than WIX. Downside is it comes with less templates (28 vs 500+ on WIX) but the templates are of high quality.
  4. Weebly is another drag and drop platform similar to WIX as well. Have not tested Weebly out at all but have heard better SEO results on here vs. WIX.

The website you are viewing now was made using wordpress. We were very tempted to use the drag and drop platforms because it would have saved A LOT of time but we decided to use wordpress for SEO reasons. We also installed Visual Composer which is a drag and drop page builder plugin for wordpress. This has definitely made our lives easier but there are still occasional small things that take hours to resolve. We’ve recently discovered Fiverr which is a marketplace where you can pay experienced people to help you with almost any task. We’ll give it a shot to fix some things on our page and let you know more.

Picking a Domain Name

Do not rush in picking a name for your website! Here are some steps that can help:

  1. Brainstorm and write down keywords that come to mind when you think of what your website will be. To get an idea, here’s a list of words we spit out during our brainstorming session (passive income, side hustle, live the life you want, free yourself, start up money, etc.)
  2. Keep it short if possible. The length of our very own blog is pushing it to the limits. We would recommend keeping your website name short so it is easy to type and remember. A short name will also allow you more space on business cards and other offline media.
  3. Be unique when choosing your name. Do not have a name similar to  an already popular website (ex. instergram, flicker, tweeter, etc.)
  4. Check availability of the name. This can be done on any domain purchasing website.
  5. Avoid Copyright infringement by checking copyright.gov. The last thing you want is buying a domain name that infringes on someone’s copyright.

 

Choosing a Server

There are several servers out there but you want to make sure you choose the most reliable one that fits your needs.

 

Linking Server and Domain Name

Once you’ve purchased your domain name and server, you’ll need to link the two together. To do that you’ll have to:

  1. Get the name server or DNS server from your web hosting site (ex. )
  2. Log in to your domain name registrar and find the option to set up or change the domain name server.

Design

Draft Your Website

Lets assume none of you are professional developers or coders so you’ll want to find a template for your website. We recommend drawing out the structure of your page so you’ll have an idea of what you want and which themes will require the least amount of format edits.

Find a Template

This will be a different process depending on which webpage builder you decide to go with. Here’s some info on finding templates for using the web sites we suggested:

  • WordPress has the most templates by far because it’s open source. We personally recommend using the free templates WordPress provides if you are on a tight budget and new at this. If you would like to take your page to another level we recommend checking out themes on themeforest.
  • Wix has several different templates organized in categories on their  website here Wix Templates. You can view and edit before choosing to make sure it’s the one you want. Make sure you don’t go too far into editing one because you cannot change templates without losing content.
  • Squarespace has fewer templates but they are of great quality and can only be found on their website here Squarespace Templates. Unlike Wix, you can switch templates without losing content.
  • Weebly has a bit more templates than Squarespace that can be found on their own website here Weebly Templates. In our opinion, the templates are not the best but can easily be customized. Templates can also be purchased from other pages.

 

Generate Content

This part can be very time consuming but if you’re writing about something you are interested in or passionate for, the research and content should come fairly easy.

Beginning Content

You must create content before going live. People need to know what your website is about and why they should visit it and be a part of it. Here’s what we came up with during this stage:

  • Mission of website
  • Who we are
  • Descriptions of businesses and models
  • Steps to make it happen

The content generated at this beginning stage is what makes your website and will determine it’s success. If you can capture peoples attention, you’ll be able to build an audience.

Updating Content

Once you have finished your initial content and launch your website, you’ll need to keep things interesting. This can be done with blog post and/or forums which give people reasons to keep visiting. As you generate more content, ideas will constantly pop in your head on things you would like to share with your audience. If and when your audience becomes too large for you to handle yourself (a very good problem to have), you can hire people to write content. Of course, make sure the content they write is quality towards you and your audience.

 

Photos & Videos

Use photos and videos! Pages with more graphics not only looks better but is proven to increase views as well. When choosing photos and videos to include in your website, make sure you are not violating someones copyright. What you find on google images will most likely be owned by someone and getting caught can be embarrassing and costly. Here’s 14 great websites to find free images!

Monetizing

There are many ways to monetize your website but make sure you do it correctly. Do not overload your page with ads or products simply because they’ll make you money. What you add to you webpage has to make sense with the content and benefit your audience.

Here are some examples of ways to monetize your blog:

  • Affiliate Marketing is the most popular way to monetize. This means selling or recommending someone’s product or service on your site. When people click on your affiliate link and makes a purchase, you’ll receive a commission on the sale. You can usually google the company or product + affiliate program (ex. amazon affiliate program). Here are also some Affiliate Marketing Network websites to find products and services to promote:
  • Pay Per Click Advertising is the next most popular way to monetize. This means directing traffic to other websites and getting paid per click. This is done a few ways but from what we know, Google Adsense is the simplest. Google will give you a code to place on your page and ads relevant to your page will be displayed. Apply for AdSense here.
  • Selling Ad Space is pretty self explanatory. You’ll have to find your own customers (advertisers) and sell them space on your page. This can difficult if you don’t have impressive stats to start with. If you already have a large audience, advertisers may approach you.
  • Sponsored Posts & Articles is another option. This means getting paid to write about something or letting advertisers write on your page. An example would be writing a blog post about the best webpage builder (paid for by the webpage builder). Once again, we recommend not selling out and keeping your opinions 100% genuine.
  • Selling products on your page can generate a lot of money. These products can be e-books, webinars, tools, and anything else that is relevant and a value add to your audience.
  • Donations is another way to monetize. We only suggest asking for donations if your webpage is for a good cause and you have no other way.

We’ll continue to post on ways to monetize as we research and experiment more.

Marketing

Awesome content means nothing when no one reads it. You must drive traffic to your website and build an audience. There are several ways to do this which we will mention here and continue to share as we do them ourselves.

  • Share with friends and family – this should be the first thing you do. Share your website with friends and family and ask them what they think. Of course, keep in mind that you should share it with those who would be interested otherwise it’ll be boring content no matter what. Ask them to share it with their friends and family as well.
  • Utilize Social Media – share your blog on linkedin, facebook, twitter, pinterest, and wherever else your target audience can be found. You can do this manually or with targeted paid ads. Make sure you are only reaching out to your target audience (do not spam). It’s also a good idea to reach out to other social influencers to help you.
  • Share on other forums and blogs related – check out related topics on sites like reddit and quora. If and only if you have a useful post or page from your website that is relevant to a topic on there, share it! You’ll add value and drive traffic.
  • SEO – Search engine optimization is very important. Click here for our top SEO tips (Link to SEO Post)
  • Involve others – include some creditable people in your website by mentioning them, interviewing them, and/or invite them to write on your page. They will most likely share the post with their audience which will direct more traffic towards your page.
  • Automate your emails – get people to subscribe. It’s nice to remind them every now and then about your website but make sure you do not spam! Keep them updated with important/interesting newsletters.

This topic will continue to expand as we try all these techniques and more with our own website.

Blog

Suggested Website Builders
squarespace Wix squarespace weebly
Hosting
Resources
Fiverr.com themeforest