How To Build A Website For Your Business
So You’re A Business Owner, Right?
If you don’t have a website for your business yet, don’t worry… You soon will 🙂
in 2018, It’s now more simple than ever before to start and build your own professional website or blog for your business.
I’m an entrepreneur and business owner myself, so I know that cashflow is king (or Queen), and that we need to look after the pennies, especially when our businesses are in the startup phase. So why not save THOUSANDS of your precious cash, and do it yourself?? (trust me, you can literally save thousands)
I’ll walk you through Step-By-Step exactly how you can do this in this post….
Lets Start At The Beginning:
To build a website, you'll need just 3 things:
- A domain name
- A WordPress Theme
Your domain name is the name of your website. This is what people will type into toolbar to get to your site. For example, this websites domain name is cleverblogs.co. Or other popular domain names are google .com, or amazon .com.
Webhosting is where your site 'lives' on the internet. So if you can imagine your domain name being the address, then your web hosting is the bricks and mortar of your blog. Every blog or website will require web hosting otherwise it wont have anywhere to 'live' or be built.
WordPress Themes are basically a bunch of files that work together to make your blog or website look and navigate a certain way. These files are customisable to people like you and I. (I'm assuming that you, like me, don't have a clue how to write your own code?)
Purchasing domain names and web hosting can sometimes be expensive if you choose to host with the better quality web hosting companies who provide a much better service.
Trust me when I tell you that they're worth it!
I've pinched the pennies before on hosting and it was my biggest regret when things start to take off.
We're talking about slooooooow loading times. Your site crashing when you start getting a good following. Bad customer service when you have an issue (which you almost always will have, so it pays to go with the best customer service providers). And a complicated setup process.
Often, the high costs are the most common reason for people not building a website. Thats fair enough-ski.
Thankfully, I've hooked you up with THE best web hosting company for a fraction of the price that you would usually pay. It'll get you a saving of 50% off - (just $3.95 a month), PLUS a free domain name! (That's less than the price of a coffee!)
There's a reason why WordPress officially recommends Bluehost more than any other hosting service.
They've been working with WordPress since 2005 to create the most user friendly service, and they host millions of websites online already. So they know what they're doing. You're site will not only run faster, but the setup process is super easy, and their 24/7 customer support is awesome. Besides - if you decide to go with Bluehost and you're not happy... they'll give you your money back. Blaaa Blaa Bla....
They're the Top Dawgz, everyone knows it, and thats who I'd strongly recommend you use. But whatta I know?
Lets Get To It:
Step 1: Get Your Domain Name And Webhost
So once you've opened up Bluehost in a new window (click here or the image above), you'll need to hit the green 'Get Started' button.
Select the plan that you think is best suited to yourself.
Personally I'd recommend starting off with the basic plan first. Its the cheapest and is ample for the early stages of your blog. Besides, you can always upgrade further down the line if you need to. (May as well save where ya can)
Secure Your Free Domain Name
Enter the domain name that you want to call your website in the left hand box. Or if you already have a domain name, type it into the right hand box and hit the next button.
You're going to want to have the same, or very similar domain name as your business name. This will help when people come to search for your business or services in search engines.
If the domain name is already taken, try using a hyphen to space between words, or even try using a different Top Level Domain such as .com .co .net .org.
Please feel free to use this awesome tool to see if your Domain Name is available:
Once you've selected your perfect domain name, you'll then need to register for your web hosting.
First, enter your personal details...
Then you will need to finalise which plan you would like to go with. The 36 month plan is the best value in terms of saving cash because this is where you can fully take advantage of the EPIC CleverBlogs discount. Also, I wouldn't recommend going with any of the optional extras just yet, unless you wanted too.
You can always choose to purchase the optional extras later if you wish.
[Just as a side note, with Bluehost you are billed upfront even though it is calculated at a monthly rate. Remember they offer a full 30 day money back guarantee if you decide its not for you]
And finally then enter your payment details, and read and accept Bluehosts Terms Of Service.
You'll then create a password for your Bluehost account, and BOOM! You're done!! Go and pour yourself a stiff drink - You're now the proud owner of an EPIC website -to-be.
Not too bad eh?
Step 2: How To Install WordPress With Bluehost
You'll soon discover just how easy it is to install WordPress with Bluehost thanks to their 'Quick Install' feature. (This is why I love 'em)
So after you're sorted your password out, you'll be prompted to choose a WordPress Theme, or in other words, how you want your website to look.
Don't spend too much time on this for now, just choose one that catches your eye as you can change your Theme at any time. (I'll show you how to do this, and recommend some of my favourite WordPress themes in another post)
Once you've selected a basic WordPress Theme, click the 'Start Building' button on the next page
At this stage, you will receive an email with your WordPress login details. Its IMPORTANT to know that your blog login details will be different to your Bluehost login details, and to keep a note of these.
You will then be taken to your WordPress dashboard where you are able to launch your brand new blog.
To make your new blog visible online, you'll need to launch it. To do this, go to the top tab on the left hand side that says Bluehost. Click on this and then click the Launch button.
Once you have hit the 'Launch' button, your website will be visible to anyone who types your domain name into the toolbar, although there's no need to worry as you wont have thousands of people visiting your blog. Not yet anyway. But you will have soon..... 😉
You may want to make a few simple changes to your blog right away, like changing the Site title or the Tagline. These features allow your readers to grasp what your blog is truly about.
For example, the Site Title and Tag line for this blog are:
- Site Title: CleverBlogs
- Tagline: Turning Passion Into Profit
Step 3: Install A WordPress Theme
Now Lets Make Your Website Look EPIC
First impressions are super important in business, and its important to 'brand' your website in a way thats congruent with your businesses ethos or message.
e.g If your logo is blue, you may want to brand your website with blue.
The way to customise your website to make it look like a professional web designer has done it for thousands of dollars or pounds, is by using WordPress Themes.
What Is A WordPress Theme??
A WordPress Theme is basically a bunch of files that work together to make your blog or website look and navigate a certain way. These files are customisable to people like you and I. (I'm assuming that you, like me, don't have a clue how to write your own code?)
For example: My websites and blogs look and work the way that they do because some other person, much cleverer than myself, wrote the code for the theme. I liked the look of the theme, so I just uploaded it to my WordPress dashboard, made a few little tweaks, and have now taken all the glory for the way it looks! 🙂
How Do You Choose A WordPress Theme, And Where Do I Get Them From?
You should look out for a few basic requirements from your Theme. Here's just a few attributes to look out for:
- Sexy! First impressions for your readers are important, so choose a good looking theme to catch their attention.
- Simple to customise - some themes are more user friendly than others, so make use of the free demos on the themes website to see if you get along with how they work and feel.
- Displays blog posts - this is an obvious requirement for your blog, but double check first.
- Great customer support with tutorials. Be sure to look out for a 30 day money back thingy, just in case you don't get along with the theme and want to switch with another.
I've made it easy for you to find some awesome Themes that I would highly recommend you check out. I've personally used all of these Themes in the past, so I have listed the Pro's and Cons that I discovered....
The BEST WordPress Themes For Beginner Bloggers
1 - Divi Theme
The Divi Theme is created by a company called Elegant Themes.
I'm not gonna sugar coat it - its f**king awesome! Especially if you're a beginner blogger and you're new to WordPress. In fact - even if you're a seasoned pro, Divi is awesome!
- The freedom to customisation is insane! The drag and drop style of the Divi Theme allows you to make your blog look pretty much however you want.
- Very user friendly. Again - the drag and drop style makes it incredibly simple to use.
- Great customer support.
- Popular with bloggers, so there are heaps of tutorials on YouTube
- Powerful. Some Themes that have an abundance of features become quite 'heavy' and slow. Not Divi!
- VERY cost effective. For just $89 you'll get the Divi Theme, PLUS full access to the entire Elegant Themes range (currently 87 different themes to chose from in the range)
- Urmmm?? (Cue tumbleweed.........)
- Genuinely - I'm struggling to think of a con for this theme....
2 - OptimizePress
CleverBlogs was created using the OptimizePress Theme! Wohoo!
So yea... Im a big fan of 'OP' 🙂
Its a bit like the Divi Theme because of the drag and drop aspect, but it used to be more tailored to digital marketers for the landing page and sales page features. Its also great for building membership sites too (which is the ONLY reason for me choosing OP over Divi.)
They have updated the theme to be super user friendly for bloggers, and have created a stunning new blog theme.
- Great for customisation.
- Love the new OptimizePress blogging theme and plugin. Easy on the eye and makes for better blogging!
- Save money on external landing page or lead capture page fees as you can build them 'in-house' with OptimizePress. (Lead capture pages are where you collect email addresses of your readers)
- Customer Service is incredible. I've never had to wait to speak with a rep of OP about any issues that I've had.
- Quite User friendly. Another great drag and drop style theme to make it look however you like.
- Its only costs $97 one off fee, and you'll be able to use the theme across 3 different websites or blogs. I personally went for the 'Publisher' package because I've used the theme so many times to create other websites and blogs for other people, so the fact I could use this theme 10 times was useful.
- The theme is quite 'heavy'. The load time isn't as good as the Divi Theme.
3 - StudioPress
StudioPress is used by a large number of top bloggers because of its ability to handle large numbers of viewers, and never slow down as a result of them.
There are a large number of themes to chose from, but I would highly recommend the Pat Flynn Smart Passive Income Theme. Pat Flynn is a World renowned blogger, so he knows exactly what works and what doesn't, and has applied his knowledge of the blogging industry and created a theme to reflect this.
- SUPER fast.
- Can handle large volumes of readers on your blog.
- StudioPress offer Incredible looking themes
- Not as user friendly as some themes
4 - The WordPress Freebie Themes
I'm going to be honest and upfront with you here... unless you absolutely have to - Don't do it!
Don't waste your time with a free theme (unless you absolutely cannot afford a paid theme)
Although some of the WordPress Themes look great on the surface, theres a reason why they are free. Its not because they're crap, in fact most of them are great! I only advise you to not bother with them because they will probably try and up-sell you on a vital feature that you'll definitely need further down the line to supplement the 'FREE' price tag.
But if you're going to go down the free route, you'll find the best versions here: https://wordpress.org/themes/
Beginners - Go with the Divi Theme.
Seasoned Pro - Go with StudioPress
Step 4: Content And Pages.
The content that you publish or pages that you create on your website, will depend upon the type of business that you run.
What I would recommend doing is checking out some of your competitors and seeing what pages they have created and see how you can improve on these.
But here is a list of the basic pages that you probably should include on your site:
- Home Page - This will be the default page that your readers or visitors will land on when they type in your URL. This could include links to the most important pages on your website, or have a brand message to explain who you are and what you do.
- About - Tell your audience your businesses story. This is where your customers learn exactly who you are, what you do, why you do it and why they should buy from you.
- Contact - Provide your customers with your contact details on this page. You can even install a contact email form to make it simple for your customers to get in touch with you via email.
- Terms And Conditions - This page is usually placed in the footer (at the very bottom) of your website, but it provides your customers withlegal information, and also protects your business with payment terms, privacy policies and and copyright information that you may have.
- FAQs - Frequently Asked Questions. Setting up a website opens up your business to whole other World of customers which is great! But if you're not ready to grow your team to a customer support services just yet, why not answer the more common customer questions before they ask them by providing the answers in this page? Work smarter, not harder and all that jazz, right?...