13 years ago I started techAU by setting up WordPress (self-hosted) and today, a website continues to be one of the most important aspects of your personal and business brands. While many people build their presence on social media, you’re then susceptible to their changing terms and conditions, so a website of your own, should definitely be your first step.
There are a variety of ready-made website templates that are available for any beginner, however, those templates may not always suit your website’s purpose. It’s important to know the principles and general elements that you need to secure before creating your new site.
If you’re looking for a guide to starting a website, then you can check out the following considerations.
1. General function
Before you start looking for a website domain or hosting, you should know what kind of website you’re building. The function is the primary consideration in website building because it reflects the direction and the kind of tools you should be using for your site. You can also base a lot of your website decisions on the kind of site you intend to have.
Here are some of the most common website functions:
- Blog – Website that focuses on text-based content. Blogs usually have niches or topic specializations.
- Ecommerce website or online shop – Site that allows a person to buy or sell online.
- Professional portfolio – Website used as a digital CV of a professional engaging in online services such as content writing, graphic design, and others.
- Multimedia website – site that allows the sharing of files and media, such as audio, video, and images.
- Scholastic website – Pages of educational institutions that feature their school, college or university and corresponding programs.
Some websites are a combination of two or more kinds. The considerations for websites are important in making sure that your site has a solid foundation. Knowing the general functions of your website will allow you to determine the kind of domain, hosting, and content management system (CMS) you would need for your site.
2. Technical requirements
Every website has technical requirements that allow it to run. Technical requirements are the various frameworks or essentials needed by the site to be operational, functional and effective. It’s important that you secure the necessary tools so that your site will have no problems when it goes live.
Some website technical requirements include the following:
- Domain name – The address of your website. Domain names often end with .com, .net, .org or country initials like .au or .uk.
- Hosting – The server that stores all files on your website.
- Content Management System or CMS – The platform that holds all content and converts it into a format that can be translated by the browser.
- Widgets – Add-ons or apps placed in sidebars and footers that have varied functions.
- Secure Sockets Layer or SSL – The lock icon or the ‘HTTPS’ before the domain signifies that the website is secure and free from hacks.
3. Search engine optimization
Search engine optimization or SEO is the process of optimizing your website for search engines like Google, Bing, and Yahoo. SEO is important for your website because it allows you to appear in more search results. There are many ways to engage in SEO practices, but you don’t need to go all out as long as you exercise a few basic principles.
Basic search engine optimization techniques include the following:
- Creating quality content that is unique, engaging, and free from grammatical errors.
- Finding out your niche so you can focus your content on one kind of topic.
- Reaching out to other websites for guest posting so that you will have backlinks to your own website.
4. Monetization channels
Starting a website requires money, so it’s important to consider how you will get your investment back. There are a lot of site business models that allow you to make passive income with your websites so you should consider all your options when it comes to making a living out of your site ventures. Make sure that you have all your bank details and third-party payment methods like PayPal in order to receive monetary compensation easily.
Here are basic monetization channels for your website:
- Affiliate marketing or getting a percentage of sales from links you place on your content
- Ad placements or getting paid for ad spaces in your website
- Sponsored posts or getting paid for creating positive and promotional posts about a certain product, service or company
- Selling items or ecommerce
Every website is unique but there are a lot of common factors despite the differences in usage. Customize your website according to your requirements and not according to the templates that are available. Make sure that you cover all grounds and aspects before you spend on your website so that you will already know what to do when the website is created.