Have you ever thought of having a website?
Today, almost every business is obliged to have its own website, and more and more people are launching a blog or personal website.
It is difficult to decide…
- what kind of tool you should use?
- do you want to do it or you want to outsource it?
- how much it will cost?
- what happens if you want changes later?
- is it going to look DIY if you don’t ask for help?
It may be surprising to you, but you no longer need to be able to code or have design skills to achieve outstanding quality. In addition, you can make the entire website easily for $150.
I would like to help you make a more conscious decision: how do you start your website building according to your life situation and goals?
In this article, I gathered the information that helps you make the first steps easier.
Since I do not want to rob your time with novel-length articles, I often refer to one of my other posts in which I will better describe the topic. If you are interested in something deeper, you can get the full picture from these content.
Let’s do it!
Step 1 – What tool should you use for building your website?
In the past, well, in the beginning era of web design, web pages were built from scratch with programming. You can still do this today, but in most cases, it is unnecessary because you won’t need it.
In the past, you had to know to code.
The “coding” of a website would take a lot of time, it would be expensive, and if not done by the pros, the quality would be maximum mediocre.
You should think about programming a site from scratch in very specific cases and with a lot of money. Nowadays, there are no more than 10% of businesses who should think about it.
Okay, but how do we build a website if not coding?
Popular Website Building Systems
Today, there are a lot of “website building systems” that you can use to build your site. These systems are also used by programmers in their work.
These are the so-called CMS (Content Management System). Their essence is to help, organize and visualize the process of building web pages. Without them, it is not worthwhile to start making a website in 2020.
The following diagram shows the rate of use of different CMSs:
WordPress is the most used content management system. Today, one-third of all existing webpages on the web is driven by this engine.
There are basically 2 versions (WordPress.com and WordPress.org).
WordPress.com is a highly regulated, free-of-charge (in the beginning) but an unflexible website builder service.
What you really need if you want your own website is the free WordPress.org.
Although you need a web host and a domain name in return, you will get so many important features and benefits.
You can read about the differences between WordPress.com and WordPress.org here.
Other than WordPress, there are different systems used to create websites. They are usually super simple to use, focusing on quick start and need the smallest technical knowledge.
Website builders like Weebly, Wix make access to the online world very easily. This is their biggest advantage, which sounds great for newbies.
The disadvantages come later.
Because everything is simplified, they are limited, and they are completely chained to you:
- They can’t be developed because there are not many external tools available to you to practice online marketing in real depth.
- And if you leave them, you won’t be able to switch to another system simply because your website needs to be completely rebuilt.
Overall, WordPress is a little more complicated if you don’t know what to do with it. But if you learn the basics properly, you can do wonders, that is why used by many. Even without prior technical knowledge, an average person can learn and use it and also, professional developers like to work with.
Of course, people who has benefits to recommend one of the different systems will try to “sell” your there prefered platform (as I do), so it may be difficult for you to choose.
As a first step, you need to clarify what you need exactly.
As a second step, you need to consider whether you are willing to learn a little more to make it easier for you in the future, or to learn less, and only to get started fast.
Try to look at other comparative articles. Since I think WordPress is the best for almost everyone, I will go on with it in this article.
So the platform was decided. We are about to return to “how”, but now is the time to figure out if you should make it yourself or you should outsource the building of your website.
Step 2 – Doing it yourself or outsourcing?
If you have decided which system you would like to create your website for, then you have to find out whether you are doing or outsourcing the work.
It’s important to understand that you pay with 2 different resources in the world:
- money and
The question is, the proportion how much will you spend.
A start-up business usually does not have much money. Because we don’t have much choice, we usually pay less money and invest more time to get the most things. I was also in this shoe at the beginning.
There are basically 3 possible ways to build a website:
- you are building it alone, learning from blog posts and YouTube videos
- you are building it alone, using courses
- You are outsourcing the web development to a freelancer or an agency
Obviously, the price continues to rise. The figures are a brief approximate:
The first two are quite accurate, while the web developers cost can have a mere variety. In the case of medium-quality work, it is approximately $2,000.
Do not forget that the time spent here has not been taken into account.
You need to think about how much time and money you can invest in creating your website.
In this article, I’m not going to talk about outsourcing. You can check it exactly how much it will cost to make a website if you building it on your own.
Now we talk about the steps that you need to take to create a website with WordPress.
Step 3 – Getting Domain and Web Hosting
Like us people, your website must live somewhere.
You’ll definitely need 2 things:
- web hosting
Your domain will be the address of your website, such as wpviking.com for us. You need to enter this in your browser to access the website.
You too can purchase one if nobody’s got it for themselves yet, altogether it’s around $15 annually.
When you thinking about a name, think about this:
- Your brand name
- Your audience
- Is it easy to spell?
- Are you using the right domain extension?
It can be frustrating when someone already bought your domain. You can’t do much with it other than buying it (we bought wpviking.com for $700) or finding a creative way for a different domain name.
One thing is sure. You need to choose one.
Hosting is the server where your website files live. Imagine a server park where the different servers line up side by side.
By default, you get a virtual slice of it. Imagine renting an apartment in a residential area.
You can choose from different web hosting providers and plans. I help you to find the best for you but for a beginner, I honestly think that there is no better choice than Siteground.
The plan you should choose mainly depends on:
- how many people will visit your site monthly,
- how complex the website structure will be,
- how much your budget is,
- How many websites you will have
In the beginning, you don’t have to worry much. Choose the smallest package and start building. You can upgrade your plan easily for the difference between the price.
I recommend you to buy the hosting and domain name at the same place. This way, you don’t have to deal with connecting your domain to your web host.
If you have chosen and you decide to make your own website let’s install WordPress.
Step 4 – Installing WordPress
The real fun starts now.
The good news is that Siteground has an automatic WordPress installation method so you should use this option.
I have a video on the whole process from choosing a plan to logging in to your new website. I have a detailed article on installing WordPress with Siteground too.
–installing wp with siteground video–
See how easy it is? You don’t have to mess around with difficult stuff just a few clicks.
Step 5 – Choosing and installing your theme
It’s great to know what theme you will be using at the start because then it is easier to plan.
But what is a theme?
WordPress is the engine of your website. Already, there will be a lot of features that will simplify a lot of things and allow you to avoid to code, so just picking the right settings from a list.
However, development teams have realized that it is also possible to further support the work of average users. This is how themes evolved.
Generally, your theme is responsible for 2 major things:
- Global settings for the entire web site
- Making your pages design with a page builder
The best programming teams know what you really need to create a website without coding. Thanks to this, the best themes have now made everything simple.
There are also free and paid themes.
I would definitely recommend a premium one because they are incredibly cheap compared to how much help they give for you. A good theme is the essence of WordPress.
If you need more information, here is a comparison of the differences between free and paid WordPress templates.
I definitely recommend the Divi ttheme, which I wrote about a lot here.
This is used by most people in the world (over 500,000) and I teach it too. They have a fantastic team and they understand well what the users need.
The price is $89 annually but you can have it for $70 with 20% off.
They have a mindblowing lifetime subscription too for $224 with 10% sale.
The best feature is that you can use it on any number of websites.
I know it is not easy to choose because you need to know more about the whole website design process but we helped thousands of people in the last years and this is on our great research.
In the following, I’ll use Divi to show the next steps.
Step 6 – Planning your website
Planning is the magic tool of the lazy. This will be the case when you are working on a website too.
Planning is the first of the 3 pillars of website creation.
- Layoung the foundation
It is very important to see what main steps follow each other.
If you are well prepared, you will be able to save a lot of hours during the construction phases.
If you are preparing for the first website of your life, you should also be familiar with the basic concepts of design and WordPress. For this reason, the finalization of your plans may coincide with the actual page building, but it is not a problem at all.
You will need to consider the following:
- What fonts do you use?
- What colours do you use to harmonize with your brand?
- What kind of pictures do you use and how to get them from?
- How are well-looking pages built?
- How should you reverse engineer successful pages?
- What pages do you need?
- What should be included in your menu, footer, sidebar?
- What content do you need on your site?
I will explain these in a course you can check here. I’m guiding you through everything you need to plan carefully.
Step 7 – Building the base of your WordPress site
The next step is to build the fundamentals. This is before designing your pages.
In this case, you set up the things that are needed for the good structure of your website, search engine optimization, quick page lodgings and to be functional and secure too.
As a beginner, it is hard what is you actually have to focus on.
Be sure to follow these steps:
- Installing theme
- Creating your pages (no designing yet)
- Constructing Your Content
- Creating the Menu
- Website Name and tagline
- Link Structure
- Delete Unnecessary Content
Setting up plugins and integrations
In addition to WordPress’s default settings, there are also so-called plugins.
The basic functions of WordPress help a lot, but since we can create a website for a variety of purposes, after a while, everyone will need different features.
For example, a blog need less extra features than an eCommerce store.
You should only use the plugins that your website actually needs.
However, there are some that I think are must to use for a website to function properly. These are:
- cookie notification – GDPR Cookie Compliance
- spam manager – Akismet
- search engine optimization – Yoast SEO
- security add-ons – UpdraftPlus, Wordfence
If you install them and set them up well, then there will be no big trouble there.
Don’t forget the integrations either. You want to get data from your visitors from the beginning.
- Google Analytics
- Facebook Pixel
- Search Console
You can see the exact steps and other very useful plugins in our WordPress course.
As a beginner, of course, you will not only need to take the exact steps but also understand the different connections. Of course, I also explain these in our course, so you are going to get the “why” and the “how” too.
Now, in a nutshell, I have just summarized what you need to build the fundamentals, but here, unfortunately, I have no way of explaining each of its elements in detail.
The point is that building the right base will be an incredibly important step because you can start the creative work only after that.
I have a free course where I give lots of helpful tips and tricks to get started. If you haven’t done it yet click here to start.
Step 8 – Designing pages and writing content
You can see above that carefully planned steps lead to a website. You have to do these every time when you are building a new site.
With a well-assembled base, you can build your content with confidence and unleash your unique design.
You’ll get here if you’ve already ticked the following things:
- Hosting and Domain Name
- Installed WordPress
- Installed Theme
- Plan What Pages and Content You Want
- Basic WP Settings
- Set Up Plugins and Integrations
- Blank Pages and Menu Structure
These can be broken down into small steps, so everyone can do the same professional job by doing the “homework”.
The designing comes after this.
You will need your creativity, marketing and copywriting skills.
If you are well prepared, researched and planned what you will need, it will be much easier.
Your theme and page builder will be a great help as you will get different layouts that you can load with two clicks. They are responsive, ie they look good on mobile. They are wonderfully built and you just have to replace the pictures, colours and texts.
We have designed such layouts too.
Designing your pages is a long task, but it is enjoyable because you can unfold your imagination.
It’s like playing with Lego blocks.
You have to go through each of your subpages one by one and you have to finish them from a design and content point of view. If you do, then your first web site is ready.
Step 9 – Website Maintenance
It is true that this is not a part of your site building, but it is important to keep in mind you need to maintain your website in a good shape.
On a regular basis, at least once a week, you should go to the admin interface and check if everything goes well.
- are there any new updates that need to be installed,
- whether to create new content,
- to update some information
- update the WordPress system, theme and plugins
These details depend on whether you create a blog, a business website, a portfolio, or a webshop. At different levels, you have to deal with different types of pages, but don’t worry, there will be no hard work. Ás
Summary – How to build a website
Today, there is no need for special training to create a website, but you have to do it responsibly.
First, you need to decide what system you want to work with and whether you want to build it or not.
If you decide to work on your own, then all of the following steps will be essential:
- Buying Domain and Hosting
- Install WordPress
- Selecting a Theme
- Planning the Website
- Building a WordPress Base
- Uploading Your Content and Designing Pages
Don’t leave your website behind. A website is never really ready, it can always be a bit of a sniff, but it’s important not to miss the 80/20 rule. Don’t get lost in the details, but keep an eye on important things.
Now you can see that there are actually many small steps to building and maintaining a website. The good news is that you are all able to do it!