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Want a website? Start here: Things I need to consider before I talk to my designer.

You want to have a website for your growing business, but do not know where to start? Whether you are a first time entrepreneur or have been around the block a couple of times, having a checklist of things to consider before you start on your project always helps. In this blog, we give you a checklist of some important points you have to consider before you decide to embark on this process.

How will I find a good website designer/developer?

The first place to start is your immediate circle. Word-of-Mouth. Reach out to your family, friends and associates to ask if they know someone who can sit with you and help you navigate this journey. Ask for past references. Chances are that you will end up finding someone who meets your needs through these channels. 

If this does not work, widen your net. This is where your trusty friend Google comes to help. There are many websites you can find freelance website designers whole are willing to work on your project with your budget. Don't be shy to ask around for reference or do your own research. Some such sites you can find freelancers are:

If the above methods seem too tedious for you, or you just do not want to go through the hassle; then there is always DIY. If you are not worried about getting your hands dirty, and are fairly technical a great place to start is by using a website builder. However, one thing you have to consider before embarking on the project. Giving up mid-way and then hiring a professional might just blow a hole through your budget. You can read more about why it is better to hire a web developer instead of using a website builder. 

Some good website builders are:

Things you need to consider to get your website online

There are some things you need to buy before you can have your website online. 

Domain name

This is the address of your website online. It is also called TLD or the top level domain of your website. Consider that you would like your website to be called www.Yourname.com 



This is the address your audience who visits your website will type in the browser to reach your website.  You should choose Yourname to reflect your business identity. If Sarah is a baker who sells cakes other baked products, she could name her website www.cakesbysarah.com And always remember, have 2,3 alternative names in mind incase your first option is taken.

Extensions: What extension should you choose for your website?

The most popular extension for websites is .com according to Godaddy.com Most for-profit businesses choose this extension by default.
Other popular extensions to choose from are .net, .org, .co and .us (if you are based in the US, while other countries have similar options for their citizens, or business entities registered in these countries)


Countries

Extensions

India

.in

Canada

.ca

New Zealand

.nz

Australia

.au

European Union

.eu

England

.uk


This is by no means an extensive list, you can read this blog post for a more in depth list.

Hosting provider

This step is important as this is when you buy the physical space on the sever (or the web host) where your program files reside. Consider an example: you want to build a storefront or an office. You choose the name on the title (that is your TLD or domain name as explained above) and then you buy the actual land where your storefront is built. This land is what you buy from the hosting provider to house your website.
It is always a good idea to buy your own domain name and rent a space from your hosting provider. This will help you along the process. If things go south ways with your web designer, and you choose to end the relationship (life happens), you do not loose the work done on your website and are not locked out of your own website. 


Key Takeaways

There are two ways to develop a website
  1. Hire a Pro
  2. Do it Yourself
Hiring someone is always (most of the times) a good idea. Especially your tech-savvy friend, family member or neighbor. This can free up a lot of your time.  

If you choose to DIY, you can use website builders. Most of them offer a huge library of templates you can choose from. Some popular website builders are:
  1. Godaddy
  2. Wix
  3. Wordpress
Choosing the name and hosting provider for your website and why is it important that you choose these instead of letting your designer choose them. 

If you found the above article helpful, you might like to read these articles

Anandi has been helping businesses like yours navigate the digital landscape and built a stronger online identity using digital  services since 2016. You can find her on Google or reach her on Facebook


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