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    Domain registration, website design and hosting

     

    The domain name is the address of your website and a big part of your brand, so you definitely want to take some time to think of the right name.

    You can register your domain at a number of different registrars these days. GoDaddy.com and host gator are the most popular

     

    Domain Registration Tips

     

    1. Use Three Words or Less


    Names that are too long can be hard to remember. Try to keep your name three words or less (two is ideal).

     

    2. Don’t Use Numbers to Represent Words

     

    First of all, when you’re verbally telling someone your site, you have to remember to tell them the number because most will assume it’s the actual word (2 = to, 4 = for, etc.)

    For Example- 2 Create a website

    If you absolutely have to use a number, try to also register the spelled out version of the number as well. Then you can redirect one name to the other in case people type in the wrong version.

     

    3. Don’t Be Afraid to Make Up a Word (Within Reason)


    Because so many good, short .com names have been taken, a lot of people choose to include made-up words in their name. For example, WebsiteZigglo.com. Zigglo is not a real word, but the domain is short and brandable. More and more companies are choosing this strategy. Think Zazzle, Weebly, Fiverr and the list goes on.


    4. Stay Away from Hyphens


    Site Build It! still recommends them, but I dont think anyone is a fan of hyphens Unless your domain is incredibly long (which you should stay away from anyway), hyphens are easily forgotten.


    Let’s say you verbally tell someone your name while you’re out and you don’t have a business card to give them. That person may forget to add the hyphens when visiting your site later. Here’s another example Suppose you’re a guest on someone’s podcast and you want to mention your domain. You have to verbally mention the hyphen and hope people remember to type it.
    The reason hyphens were recommended years ago is they supposedly helped the search engines read the individual keywords. This could have a search engine optimization advantage. However, there is no evidence that proves this is a necessity today. At one time, hyphens made a difference. Today, the search engines are smarter and use so many other factors to determine a site’s ranking.


    5. Include Major Keywords for SEO


    As I’ve already stated, the domain name doesn’t have quite the impact it used to have on search rankings. However, Many people still a fan of including major keyword phrase in the domain as long as you can keep it short and memorable.
    The other advantage of including them in your domain is when people link to your site, they will often use the domain. So if the link includes keywords you want to target (called anchor text), this can have some search engine optimization benefits.

    Keywords can also help describe your site. For example, Lisa Irby (full-time Webmaster,blogger and affiliate marketer) named her book and domain name Niche Website Success because as soon as people see the name, they will know exactly what the book/site is about.


    6. Keep The Name As Short As Possible


    Domains can have up to 63 characters, but that doesn’t mean you have to use them all.
    Ideally you want your name to fit nicely on business cards, T-shirts, etc. Also, sites like Twitter, YouTube, etc. have character limits, which is another thing to consider.
    Tip: Before choosing a name, check Twitter, YouTube, etc. to see if the name is available there too. That way you can ensure to get the same spelling everywhere.

     

    7. Try to Get a .com Name


    Because so many “good” .com names are taken, registering other extensions has become more popular (.name, .biz, etc.) Nevertheless, I still recommend trying to get a .com name if you can. It’s still the preferred extension and most people assume that your name ends in .com if they are visiting your site from memory.

    8. Register Common Extensions to Protect Your Name I always use .com names for my websites and since .net is the 2nd most popular extension, I usually register the .net (and sometimes .org) and forward the domains to my main site.

    Doing so prevents copycatters from registering common extensions of your website name. Most domain registrars (including Website Palace) provide free domain forwarding. So if someone types in yourdomain.net, you can forward it to your .com site.

     

    Website Design


    The goal of most web designers is to create an attractive, easily accessible and functional website that will convince the visitor to do something. Creating such a website requires good graphic design, easy and intuitive site navigation, logical site layout and good web copy. The following suggestions are general web design guidelines.

     

    Web Content

    You want the visitor to see you as a knowledgeable information source and/or a reputable business. Poor grammar and spelling will immediately reduce your credibility. Remember that people use the internet to find information. Whether you are selling your own product or recommending someone else’s products, you must first provide valuable information to the visitor or they will click away and find a website that gives them what they what they want.

     

    Cross Browser Compatibility

    There are at least a hundred different browsers in use. You must design your website to work properly in the most widely used browsers. To do that you may not be able to use all of the really great special effects that are available because they may not be supported in most browsers.

    Even though most web browsers are free, people do not necessary bother to upgrade to the latest versions. The average surfer may not know how to upgrade their browser or have the attitude, “If it works, don’t fix it.” Remember your visitor may have a PC, a MAC, a Linux box, a PDA or a cell phone and they all use different browsers.

    Good web design requires your web pages to work in Microsoft Internet Explorer, Netscape, Firefox, Opera and Safari at a minimum. Validating your HTML code will help but the final test is to view your website in different browsers running on different platforms.

     

    Graphics and Photos

    Web surfers are impatient and studies show that most people will click away if a webpage takes longer than 10 seconds to load. Always optimize your photos and other graphic files to have as small a size as possible without sacrificing picture quality.

    Always use the height and width attributes on the picture so the rest of the page can load while the graphic files is downloading. Use the ALT HTML tag so people with graphics turned off and those using hand held devices know what the picture is supposed to be.

     

    Background Colors

    If you use anything other than white behind text, be sure to specify link colors otherwise the user’s browser defaults will determine what color the links are which can make them unreadable.

     

    Multimedia

    Multimedia is composed of flash movies, video clips, audio clips and background music. Always use streaming media because it reduces download time. Make sure the visitor can stop and start multimedia files or in the case of flash introductions, skip them if they want. That way people with slow connections or devices that don’t support multimedia can ignore them.

    Also, put any important information presented in multimedia in text as well so the visitor has access to that information without using multimedia. If a plug-in is needed to use the multimedia, always provide a link to it so the user can install it. Finally, always remember the 10-second rule for site loading when deciding to use multimedia.

     

    Site Navigation

    Site navigation should be simple and intuitive. Studies have shown if a visitor cannot access the information they want within three clicks, they will leave the site. This is called the 3-click rule. Every area of your website should be reachable within three clicks from anywhere else on the site. If you use anything other than simple text links, make sure to test your navigation in all the major browsers.

     

    Links

    Periodically test all site links to be certain that they are valid. Nothing chases a visitor off faster than broken links. There are several free online services that will periodically check your links.

     

    Frames

    Avoid using frames, since they make it difficult to bookmark individual pages on your web site and you want people to bookmark pages so they can come back.

     

    Summary

    Good Web design is a combination of common sense and good planning. Your site should be attractive and easy to use and most importantly provide the user with the information or services they want.


    Web host

     

    A web host is the company that ensures your site is up and running. They provide the space for you to create your pages and give you access to scripts like WordPress, Joomla and more. Once you’ve registered your domain name and sign up with a hosting account, you can begin building your site. If you’ve decided to use WordPress or some other CMS then setting up your site is just a matter of signing into your web hosting account and installing the desired CMS script and you can begin publishing your site instantly.

     

    If you are going to build a static website then you’ll either need to buy software (Dreamweaver, Artisteer, etc.) or learn how to program from scratch (Notepad) and create your site. Then you upload it to the web through your hosting account. Dreamweaver and many other software programs actually have a built-in FTP (file transfer protocol) feature that allows you to publish your pages directly from the software. You’ll just have to login to your hosting account to create an FTP username and password first.

     

    Choosing a Host


    There are a variety of hosting companies today. You can use GoDaddy, Powweb, Hostgator, Bluehost, the options are endless. The difference usually comes down to features, price and what you’re comfortable with.

     

     

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