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Do it yourself web site creation - helpful hints -

Create your own website

Tired of dealing with expensive and unresponsive webmasters?

Why not do your own website?

You won't believe how inexpensive and easy it is using today's simple webhosting software.

I am going to tell you in a few short words the key things you need to know to get your website up and operational and help you make sure people can find your site on the search engines. These tips come from over 12 years of personal experience making professional websites.

The most difficult part of this will be working out what information you need to put on your website, making sure you have good clear writing with no spelling mistakes, and getting your photos ready.

The technical part of it - which is what most people rush to a webmaster for - is now so easy that you can do it yourself and have a very professional looking site in less time than it takes me to tell you how to do it.

Your Web Host

First of all, your website needs to be on a major website host server. That simply means you need to put your website files on a computer connected to the major arteries of the Internet with good solid 24/7 operation and security.

Look no further than Hostmonster - I have personally worked with 8 different web hosts over the years and this one is by far the best available anywhere. I frankly don't know how they do it so inexpensively and offer so much value for money. I guess it's because they are one of the biggest web hosts on the planet with hundreds of thousands of websites.

In a moment you will click on the following Hostmonster banner to find out more about Hostmonster and sign up for an account. But first, what are you going to name your website?

The first part of the Hostmonster signup is to tell them what you want to use as a domain name - you'll get a free domain name for as long as you stay with Hostmonster. So, when you sign up with Hostmonster you will need to know what you are going to call your website.

Here are some tips for selecting your domain name:

1. Use a name that people will be entering into google when looking for what you are going to offer on your website. This means you either have to guess what terms someone might put into google to find your website or, use google's adwords tool to ask google what words people really are using. The adwords tool will not only tell you how many times a month people actually use those words but will offer suggestions on other search terms so you can see how many times a month people use those other terms as well.

2. Make of list of the most commonly used search terms - these - or a combination of these - will be your prime choices for your domain name. Your domain name should be more than one word - maybe two or three words - and use hyphens between the words, not underscores or periods and don't run the words together. It will look like this "the-best-website-name.com" Notice I've used .com at the end. This stands for a commercial site. You can also use .org if your website is for a non-commercial organization or .info if it is an information only site or .biz for a business site. .net means the site is a technical network site. Domain names ending with .com are by far the most common and easily remembered. If in doubt, use .com

When you know what you want to call your site click on the following banner to sign up with hostmonster. If, when you enter your proposed domain name you discover it is already taken, don't worry, just fiddle with it a little bit. Try adding hyphens between the words, make it plural or singluar, add another descriptive word. Your domain name does not have to be short. When you find a combination that is not taken continue the signup process.

Sign up with Hostmonster now:

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hostmonster signup

CLICK HERE TO SIGNUP FOR HOSTMONSTER.COM

Once your account is set up, you will see a link to the Control Panel. The Control Panel is your center for operating your website on the Hostmonster server. You'll get an informative email from Hostmonster about this anyway. The first time you go to the Control Panel you'll be offered a tutorial on getting started. Take it to learn what you can do with your new account.

Building a website with one click using Wordpress

Now that you have a domain and a place to put your website you need to build a website.

The easiest solution today for setting up a website is Wordpress. Hostmonster allows you to set up a Wordpress website with one click. I'll give you a reference to a step by step tutorial for doing this in a moment but first you are going to need to download some additional files.

The standard Wordpress web sites look like blogs - so if you want to use it to create a business web site you will need to download a "theme" which makes Wordpress look like a website and not a blog.

There are hundreds of themes for Wordpress but after an extensive review I recommend the user-friendly but very powerful theme called "Thesis." Find out more about Thesis . You can download a copy of Thesis by clicking on the following banner.

As you download this file you'll see a reference on the Thesis site for a users guide. Bookmark this for later reference.

File Transfer Program - Firezilla

Next, you will need a program to transfer files to the website host from your computer . For this you will use a file management program called an FTP Client. I recommend Firezilla, a free program and very good. You can download it here

Step by step tutorial for creating a website using WordPress and Thesis

Finally, for the step by step tutorial on setting up your WordPress/Thesis website download this pdf file

Xara Website Designer

OK, so you had a look at Word Press and Thesis and although it is reasonably easy there is still a learning curve and it takes time to get your head around some of the concepts. What if there was an even easier way to make a website - not a blog, but a website - where everything is alreadly all thought out, the menus and pages done for you by professionals.

There are programs around that do this but, frankly, I've always thought the templates that came with these programs were designed by nerds, not graphic designers. They looked very ordinary to say the least and the nerds did not pay anywhere near enough attention to the critical issues of SEO. So basically I've ignored them. But just recently I got an email from Xara software extolling the virtures of their super new Website Designer. Easy, fast, inexpensive, etc. etc. etc. Anyway I had a quick look - and started by checking out their "professionally designed templates." Well for a change, they actually looked good. In fact some of them looked great. So I opened up the page source to check out the code and was again surprised that they have paid attention to the basics of SEO. It's not perfect by any means, but if you wanted to whip up a very professional looking website in a couple of minutes, click on the following banner to check out the Xara Website Designer.

For an example of a Xara Designer website check out this on on a Noumea Dentist.

Making the perfect website - learn from the best

Now you have all the software tools and if you follow the steps listed in the above Thesis For Small Business websites you'll have everything you need to finish your website - except the information and photos.

Here's something that all good researchers learn: Others have already done all the work for you! You just need to look at what they have done and start from there.

You can have the best website in the world but if it can't be found on page 1 of the search engines you might as well not have it at all. Again, others have done it and there is no reason you can't do it to.

Open your browser and enter the search terms to find what you are offering on your website into Google.

Have a look at the websites that come up on the first page of google (not the paid advertisements) and find the ones that are closest to what you intend to produce.

Open each of them in a new tab on your browser. Look through them and find the features you like best - the information, forms, the way the site is presented, the style of writing, and pay special attention to the following:

The title of each page

The headings on the page

The use of menu links between the pages

Right click on each page and select "view page source" . This will open a separate window showing the html code of the page. You don't need to understand any of this code except, at the top of each page find - and copy these "metatags"

<title>The title of the page</title>
<meta name="keywords" content="a series of key words separated by commas" />  
<meta name="description" content="a short description of what's on the page - 
this is important because it is what appears in the google results for searches)"/>

You will now have a good idea of what pages your site will need and what to add in the all important search engine information at the top of your pages and the headers on the page.

Thesis will help you enter these terms. You'll find out how in the tutorial you downloaded.

Don't copy the titles and descriptions exactly from the other sites that do well on google. Use their terms as a guide for your own words. Improve on what has already been done. Spelling is critical, spell check it all.

Every page on your website is valuable!

So be sure ever page has it's own title and description.

Use headers to separate your paragraphs and make sure these headers include the key words that someone would enter into google to find that page.

Next, if you want to make sure your website is properly recognized by Google, you should sign up for a free Google Webmaster account at Google Webmaster Central.

You should also submit a sitemap to google on your webmaster account. I recommend using a free online service XML-Sitemaps.com to generate your sitemap.

Some of my websites hosted on this Hostmonster based site include:

Tellus Consultants - Community Science in the South Pacific This website details successful environmental projects in the South Pacific which were based on the concept of individuals from the community contributing to scientific studies about the environment.

Seakeepers of New Zealand This website provides a series of projects for school children that school teachers have used to introduce children to environmental science and care for their local environment.

Integrated Clean Energy for Peace and Climate An attempt to lower the severe costs of petroleum based energy systems for the small islands of our planet by using global scientific expertise to set up 100% renewable energy economies in the small island nations.

Photo library of hotels, resorts and other accommodations in New Caledonia Thousands of recent photographs of New Caledonia hotels and resorts that enable travellers to see what they are getting into.

Photo library of activities and excursions in New Caledonia Hundreds of images of New Caledonia tours, diving, airlines, and other activities available to visitors to New Caledonia.

Photo library of New Caledonia people, sights, monuments, and wilderness Pictures of the culture, best places to visit, flowers, rivers, waterfalls and wilderness areas of New Caledonia.

Cruising and sailing in Asia The log of the research vessel Moira in Hong Kong and the Philipines - a story of pirates, private armies, and cruising.

Cruising and sailing in Australia The log of the resarch vessel Moira in Australia, in two parts, sailing from Port Douglas in the north to Sydney in the South.

Cruising and sailing in PNG The log of the research vessel Moira in Papua New Guinea, especially the Milne Bay area, the Trobriand Islands and the easternmost part of the PNG island chain.

Cruising and sailing in Fiji The log of the research vessel Moira in Fiji, including the multitude of islands to the west, south and east of Fiji.

Cruising and sailing in the Solomon Islands The log of the research vessel Moira in the Solomon Islands with details on cultural and spiritual aspects of the remote islands of the Solomons.

Cruising and sailing in Samoa The log of the research vessel Moira in Western and American Samoa.

This Magic Sea A look at the life of our oceans and the evolution of life on our planet.

Log of the Research Vessel Moira in the South Pacific This is an introduction and table of contents to the expeditions of the Research Vessel Moira in the South Pacific.

Thread of Awareness A scientific definition and understanding of what life is and how to discover the actual truths of existence that are normally hidden from our senses - as air is invisible to our eyes, the process of consciousness is invisible to our conscious minds.

Thread of Awareness in Chaos

Travel information Vanuatu

Travel information New Caledonia

Noumea Hotels

Noumea car rentals

Noumea Yacht Charter

Noumea Dentist New Caledonia