Getting started with building your website when you have no idea where to start can be stressful. With so many “resources” you have to go all over the place to get all the information you need. If you are at ground zero with building your website, here are the 5 things you need when you start thinking about building your website.
First, you will need to secure your domain name this is the address for your website home. You have to have a domain name in order to have a website, your domain name helps your website visitors find you. It is your personal link to your website, no one else can have it but only if you registered it.
You want to make sure your domain is not too long is similar or exact to your business name.
A domain name is your website name. A domain name is an address where Internet users can access your website. A domain name is used for finding and identifying computers on the Internet. Computers use IP addresses, which are a series of number. However, it is difficult for humans to remember strings of numbers. Because of this, domain names were developed and used to identify entities on the Internet rather than using IP addresses.
A domain name can be any combination of letters and numbers, and it can be used in combination with the various domain name extensions, such as .com, .net and more.
The domain name must be registered before you can use it. Every domain name is unique. No two websites can have the same domain name. If someone types in www.yourdomain.com, it will go to your website and no one else’s.
Once you have secured your domain, you want to make sure that you have domain privacy. When you register a domain with a provider such as Godaddy or 1 and 1, you are required to register information for the public record in the WHOIS database.
The WHOIS database is a list of all registered domain names. This database has many uses including legal purposes and to check trademark infringements.
As a small or home-based business owner, the information you provide when registering your domain becomes a part of public record. This includes your first name, last name, address, email address and phone number, which is why after you purchase your domain you get an influx of spam and sales emails for building a new website or SEO services on your new domain. When you add privacy to your domain it replaces your information with the information from a proxy server. You can check your domain registration to see how it is displayed by visiting https://whois.icann.org/en
Domain privacy costs around $8 a year and will renew with your yearly domain privacy. If your domain is registered with Godaddy, Click here
Your domain is the address to your website and your hosting is the land your house sits on. Website hosting is where your website files are kept, it is needed in order to have your website accessible by the world. When choosing a website host, there are different ways go. You can choose to purchase website hosting form a provider such as Siteground. Which is the route you will need to go if you plan on using WordPress, they have different tiers available for you to choose from so you can scale up when needed.
You can also choose a platform such as Shopify or Squarespace that includes your hosting for a monthly fee. These platforms are often categorized as a WYSIWYG platform, “What you see is what you get”.
These platforms are great for DIY.
Choosing a platform can be difficult, but based on the needs of your business it will get easier to narrow down and choose one for your business.
Having security elements in place not only protects your customers but it also protects you, the business owner too.
An SSL is a secure sockets layer that establishes an encrypted link between a webs server and a browser. This encrypted link ensures that all information that is passed through remains private.
There are different types of SSL certificates: Standard, EV SSL, Multi-domain SSL and Wildcard SSL.
If you are collecting any visitor information such as email addresses, name, credit card information, and billing address you want to make sure you at least have a standard SSL installed on your website. Having a standard SSL, you will receive the secure connection, the information is encrypted and you will have the green “secure” padlock next to your domain in the address bar.
An EV SSL is a single domain SSL certificate that has the highest SSL protection. Reason being that it requires multiple layers of verification and authentication. In order to receive an EV SSL, you must submit documentation that verifies that your business is legal, in operational existence, has the right to use the domain and it matches official records.
A multi-domain SSL is an SSL certificate that covers multiple names across different domains and subdomains. You can also add the EV protection to this type of SSL.
www.example.com | www.example2.com | www.example3.net
A wildcard SSL secures your entire domain including all subdomains. This comes in handy when you separate your website or service:
example.com | www.example.com | blog.example.com
Any website you create with your domain is protected under this SSL.
Last year, Google started alerting website owners that with the Chrome V62 release, the browser will alert your website visitors that your website is not secure. Having an SSL in place does take care of this.
You can get an SSL certificate through your website host, if not you can get a free one from a provider such as Comodo.
Have you ever emailed a business before and they list their email address as firstname.lastname@example.org. Did you stop before sending the email? That’s because as a consumer we are used to seeing email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org.
This lets us know that we can trust where the email will end up at. Anyone can create a @gmail.com or @hotmail.com email account, but only the domain owner can create a email@example.com email.
Having a hosted email is not expensive or unattainable you can create a hosted email from a provider such as Gsuite or Zoho apps. Both have affordable options, with Zoho having a free plan it removes all the barriers for small businesses.
After you have secured your website essentials you have two options:
Hire a designer to complete your website
DIY your website
I hoped this helped you get started with your website project! Have any questions? Ask me below