Kick start your website
You are ready to start your own website but don’t know where to begin. After working in marketing for 7 years developing and designing website from start to finish, I am so excited to share this with those who are ready to dive in and start their own website.
Step one is developing a name for your brand. This can seem like a daunting task but it should be fun. Focus on what you want your brand to be about and who you are and let it come naturally. Even if it takes you a few days or weeks to mull over an idea. Just let it feel natural to who you are.
The next and almost vital step is seeing if the domain name is available. Now, this can be tricky at times with the internet being so big now that a lot of domains have been taken. It might also take a few tries and variations of what your brand is to find a domain that is available. A good place to check if your domain is available is Domains.com : https://www.domains.com/
If you are starting up your own design portfolio page and you have a unique last name, you might be in luck. That is how my personal portfolio website was available KatieSmetherman.com due to my unique last name. When I was starting my website for this blog though, I had to do a lot of trial and error to figure out a domain name that was available.
Next step, is to choose a hosting plan for your website. I definitely advocate owning your own website instead of using companies like Wix or Squarespace. You will have a lot more control over your site and a lot more opportunities to monetize, if you chose to go that route.
Who should you use for hosting your site?
I want to share who I use, BlueHost because they have great starting packages and as your website increases, they grow with you. Here are some of the perks when you start with BlueHost:
- A free domain name. If you were to think of your site as a physical shop, the domain name. or what your website/brand/shop is called. Other hosting companies sometimes require you to purchase your domain name elsewhere, but with Bluehost it is included.
- Free SSL Certificate. This is really a great addition with today’s internet safety certificates. If, you want Google to take your website seriously and rank it for searches, it needs to be safe. This is what an SSL certificate does- it adds the little lock next to the website URL in the address bar. Again, with other companies you have to purchase this separately, but with Bluehost it’s free.
- 24/7 support. Any questions you have, and their customer support is more than happy to answer.
- One click WordPress installation. This is one of the easies ways, I have ever connected WordPress to my site. Other sites like, GoDaddy, require a lot more steps to incorporate WordPress with their domain. With Bluehost, one click and the software is installed! You are done and can start your populating the content of your website!
So these are the reasons I chose to get started with Bluehost. Get started!
Next is to choose a theme to upload onto your WordPress site. There are a lot of free themes out there that are great. If you are looking for a more developed theme, I strongly suggest using Elegant Themes’ Divi theme. They have a lot of layouts pre-made that you can choose from and are included in the price of the theme. I have used Divi for a lot of the website’s I have built in my marketing career and have trained many clients on using the theme and can’t share it enough. This theme is very intuitive and easy to use for anyone. I have taught people who have never worked on a website before to those who are well versed in website language and everyone says the same thing. They love it!
If you have any questions or concerns on starting your own website, please feel free to reach out to me in the contact form. Also sign up for the newsletter to stay up to date on all blog posts and updates.
This post contains affiliate links; I will make a commission at no extra cost to you, should you click through and make a purchase. Read my disclosure for more info. Please use one of the links in this post when starting your website. It gives me a small commission at no extra cost to you. And it means the world to me!