Creating a website from scratch is undoubtedly a daunting and confusing task, especially when you’ve lots of information and options in hand.
Even when we started our website, we were in the same position – lots of chaos and confusion.
But thankfully, you don’t need to go through all these situations, as we have got you covered.
In this detailed guide, we’ll cover every subtle aspect you need to launch your first website online. Once you’re done reading this article, we’re sure you’ll start creating your own website with clear planning.
So, let’s dive in!
Few Things To Consider Before You Start Making A Website
Picture this: you’ve started a journey without knowing where to go, which route you should take, or what essentials you need in this journey. Would you ever reach your destination? Obviously no!
Likewise, you must determine your goals, budget, and other crucial things before building your website. Otherwise, you’d feel lost in an ocean full of website builders and hosting providers.
With that being said, let’s do some legwork –
Lay Down Your Goals
First things first, you must have a full-proof goal behind making a website.
What exactly do you want from it? – Are you looking to create a portfolio, or do you want to set up your blog, or do you want a website for your eCommerce business? Take some time and think about your long-term aim.
This stage is crucial because it will help you determine the best-suited platform you need to build your website. Once you’re done, you can now jump to the next step.
Decide On The Platform Aligned With Your Goals
Whenever we try to create a website from scratch, two options always pop up: Website builders or CMS platforms.
While Website builders are the one-stop solutions that offer hosting, domain, security, SEO, and Marketing features in one place, in Content Management Systems, you’ve to organize everything – which is a bit hard for newbies. But the perk is you can control and customize every subtle thing on your own.
However, in the previous stage, you’ve already evaluated your goals. Now, it’s time to choose the platform that fits your bill.
Let’s take some examples –
- For Portfolios:
If you want to create a portfolio, your best-suited website builders are Wix and Squarespace. On the one hand, they are easy to navigate, provide tens and thousands of built-in portfolio templates, and on the other hand, they come with the bare minimum cost (starting from$16/month).
Pro Tip: If you are a small creator and don’t want to invest one single penny in any website builder, you must go for Wix without a second thought. Because it not only has out-of-the-box premium features for portfolios but also offers a free plan for a lifetime. What else do you need?
- For Blogs:
If your main focus is building a successful blog, you can (or should) go for a CMS. As CMS is specially designed to manage web content, it will help you create, edit and publish your content in one place without any friction.
Now, hundreds of CMS systems are available in the market, like WordPress, Joomla, Drupal, Magento, etc. Which one should you choose?
The answer is WordPress. The study by W3Techs states that WordPress powers 43% of all websites on the internet. And from our years of experience, we would also recommend you go for this platform, as it is easier to navigate than other CMS platforms and comes with premium blogging features that would help you in the long run.
- For Business Websites:
If you have an online business, having a website is non-negotiable in this case. You often need to build a bigger website with multiple pages that meets your company’s needs and builds a strong impression online.
So, in such a situation, you must go for WordPress, which would give you the full creative flexibility to portray your brand identity.
- For eCommerce stores:
If you want to build an eCommerce website, you need those website builders that are dedicatedly designed for eCommerce stores only.
Now, the question is – which eCommerce website builder should you pick?
We would give you two recommendations – WooCommerce and Shopify.
Data fetched from BuiltWith states that WooCommerce holds 23% of all eCommerce websites in the market. Please note that WooCommerce is a free plugin for WordPress. Thus, if you want to build an eCommerce store with WooCommerce, you’ve to install WordPress first.
Your second option for an eCommerce website is Shopify. BuiltWith also shows that Shopify powers almost 21% of all eCommerce websites, which gives Shopify the second position after WooCommerce. But unlike WooCommerce, Shopify helps you create a standalone online store with a custom domain.
Skills You Need To Build A Website
Here comes the most important section. Many people have the misconception that they need to learn coding to build a website. But this statement is partially true – all thanks to user-friendly website builders and CMS platforms.
Take our words – you can build a full-fledged professional website without a single line of coding. And the best part? If you need some extra customization and have knowledge about coding, you can program these platforms as per your needs.
7+ Easy Steps To Create Your Own Website
Now that you are done with all the preliminary work and planning, it’s time to do some practical work. Here are 7 simple steps you need to follow to set up your own website.
1. Get A Domain Name
A domain name is your website name or a human-readable web address that people put on Google’s search bar to access your website. If you’ve opted for Website builders like Wix and Squarespace, you’ll get a free custom domain name for the first year with their regular paid plans.
Now, if you opt for CMS like WordPress, you’ve to go for hosting providers like Hostinger and Bluehost and purchase a domain name. Though most of the time, it comes for free with hosting for the 1 year.
However, the main challenges come while choosing a domain name relevant to your business goal and audience needs. Thus, Here are some best practices for selecting a perfect domain name:
- Always select the “.com” extension for authentic and professional vibes. For e.g., mywebsite.com. If “.com” isn’t available, go for “.org” and “.net” alternatives.
- Keep it simple and easy to remember.
- Avoid jargon, hyphens, and numbers.
- Add industry-specific keywords.
- Obtain a scalable name if you are looking to create something vast in the future.
- Ensure not to copy from established companies.
A lot to remember, right? We know! To ease your effort, here are some best free tools that would help you choose the perfect domain name:
- Instant Domain Search
2. Purchase A Web Hosting
Web hosting is the first and foremost thing you should invest in to create a professional website – and it’s a no-brainer. In simple words, web hosting is a service that makes your website available on the internet. It’s almost like renting a space for your website.
Now, website builders like Wix provide hosting and bandwidth for your site, meaning you don’t need to purchase hosting from any third-party providers.
On the other side, if you’ve chosen WordPress, you must purchase it from hosting providers. Though there are lots of WordPress-recommended hosting companies like Hostinger, Bluehost, Hostgator, etc., we would suggest you pick Hostinger– and for good reasons:
- $2.99/month when billed annually- ridiculously cheap
- Unlimited bandwidth
- Unlimited free SSL
- Free custom domain
- 360-degree security
- Free email
- 30- days money back guarantee
- 24/7 customer support
Once your payment is done, you can access WordPress from Hostinger’s dashboard and move forward to the next step.
3. Choose A Template And Customize It
Here comes the most exciting part of all! ( or even the most daunting one!)
Suppose you’ve visited a dull, messy, and unattractive website. What would you do? Obviously, you’d leave instantly, even if it has top-notch content.
The same applies to your own site too. Just like the front door of our houses, a website should be welcoming, attractive, and engaging.
Thanks to today’s technology – be it website builders like Wix, Squarespace, and Shopify or CMS like WordPress, you’d get thousands of in-built free and paid templates everywhere tailored to every industry. And you can customize them further to create exclusive websites.
And the best part?
They have a flexible drag-and-drop editor. Also, you’d get a left-hand sidebar menu with multiple options that help you edit the colors, images, and texts without any hassles.
Now, when it comes to designing and planning your websites, you need to keep a few things in mind:
- Remove unnecessary, confusing designs. Visitors will come to your site to collect some information. If they find the pages filled with unnecessary stuff, they won’t take a second to leave your site.
- Add relevant pages to your site. A simple business website typically contains 5 web pages, including Homepage, About Us, Services, Resources, and contact us.
You can add or delete extra pages as per your needs. For example, if you run an online store and have a website on Shopify, you must add a dedicated page for products with different sections.
Remember that people don’t like extra work. Design your site in such a way that helps them explore other pages without any hassles. Thus, use navigation and link to other pages at the top and bottom of your homepage. Take Ahrefs’ homepage as an example.
- Select a text font that’s easy to understand and skimmable. Otherwise, you’d fail to portray your brand identity.
- Choose a color scheme aligning with your brand. It’s crucial to stay on top of your visitors’ minds. If you use different colors, make sure they complement each other.
- Add real-time photos, graphics, and videos. Most people would recommend you to use stock photos from other sites. With the constant saturation in the market, we highly recommend you not to do so.
Instead, you can add real-time photos of your products (if you have any) and your team. You can also customize graphics from sites like Canva to give a unique personal touch to your website.
As time is evolving, people are also using videos to connect with readers in real-time. Thus, you can try your hands out on videos too.
- Leave lots of whitespaces to give soothing vibes to your site.
- Create a logo for your website to give it a professional look.
- Integrate your social handles with your website to build credibility among your visitors.
4. Publish Relevant Content
Once you successfully design your site, don’t forget to add relevant content. Remember, website design and website content go hand-in-hand and complement each other.
Now, while writing web content on each page, make sure to follow these practices:
- Add a crisp, short, and enticing copy on the homepage that portrays who you are and what services you provide.
- Use simple, non-technical words.
- Show product benefits with the features (If you have a product-led company.)
- Add bullet points to make it skimmable. (This post is an example)
- If you’re writing a blog post, make sure to use H1-H6 properly.
- Add images in texts to break the boringness.
- Add “You” in your content to create an instant bond with your readers.
Remember, the more crispy your content is, the more traffic it’ll attract!
5. Optimize Your Website
What’s the use of putting so much effort if your site doesn’t get visibility in SERPs?
This is where Website Optimization comes into the scene. It ensures your website/website content is relevant to people’s queries and helps you drive traffic simultaneously.
And when it comes to website optimization, here are a few things you need to keep in mind:
- Target a specific set of audience and create content around their pain points.
- Focus on UX. Thus, we put so much effort into the third step.
- Make sure your website designs and template are mobile-responsive.
- Optimize page titles, meta descriptions, product descriptions (for eCommerce websites), and URLs with relevant keywords.
- Compress images and optimize “alt-text.”
- Ensure your pages load quickly.
- Focus on security.
These are some basic SEO practices that are enough when you first launch your website.
6. Go Live
Now, it’s time to publish your website on the Internet. But before that, recheck everything, from content to text to navigation and images. Once you’re satisfied, hit the “Publish” button.
7. Start Promoting Your Website
Congratulations! Now you hold an official website. What next?
Your audience won’t know about it by magic. You must promote your website. As soon as you publish it, add it to the Google Search Console. Another best way to reach the audience is through social media.
Tag your websites in your profile bio. Connect with your friends and tell them to review your site. If you have a blog, you should start guest posting for great websites with higher domain authority. If you have a newsletter, you can add your site link to it.
Eventually, with a bit of trial and error and A/B testing, you’ll build a great website.
Final Note: How To Make Your Own Website (2024)
Websites aren’t static. You need to change it time-to-time to stay relevant in this saturated market.
Most of the time, people (especially bloggers) launch a website and wait for lakhs of visitors in the very first month. Remember, gaining huge traffic doesn’t happen overnight. You need to make a constant effort and release relevant content to make a living from it.
However, this detailed step-by-step guide to creating a website from scratch will help you to take your first step online. With that being said, it’s time for us to wrap up and for you to purchase that hosting and domain name.
If you have any doubts, feel free to reach us via the comment section!