Category Archives: Web

Degrees Offered in Web Designing

You can always attain your goal to earn a certificate, diploma or degree in your desired profession. A web design degree gives you the best opportunity for your goal in the field of web designing. There are web design programs offered at bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral levels, as well as special diplomas and certificates in web designing.

Web design certifications are very much in demand. Various software programs for web designing are available in the market, and new ones are launched on a regular basis. People learn the new software and receive a certificate. These certificates are short cuts to entering into the field of web designing.

Certificates are your best options to learn about new software packages and keep abreast of the web design market and its trends. In addition, most companies highly welcome job applicants who have special certifications along with their academic degrees and other qualifications. In fact, many organizations conduct seminars on new software packages to keep pace with emerging technologies. Certificates play a very important role in the recruitment process.

A bachelor’s degree in web designing is recommended for those who want an in-depth knowledge of the techniques of web technologies. Web technologies include web programming, web maintenance, web development, web animation control and many more. Those with a bachelor’s degree in web designing will gain expertise in web development software packages and be able to analyze the underlying software technology. They can begin their career as a web administrator or network/system administrator. They can deal with bugs caused by the program and perform trouble shooting. Furthermore, they can provide hands-on experience of new technologies to their subordinates.

E-Commerce has taken a firm hold in today’s global market, and web designers can play a vital role in a company’s overall productivity. Their skills are also apparent in the field of visual communication. They are recognized as masters of all web technologies.

People with an Associate Degree in Web Designing can show their expertise in design software such as DreamWeaver, webApps, Photoshop, etc. This degree takes two years and enhances a web designer’s resume. Web design classes for this degree include desktop publishing, database management systems and computer science applications.

The highest degree in web designing is a PhD or doctorate degree. People with a PhD can embark on a career as researcher, professor or developer. These designers can conduct a research to develop new applications and software packages that provide real time solutions. Their research results provide authenticated solutions to enhance the performance of existing technologies and integrate and synchronize them with current systems demands.

Web Designers Are Made in Heaven

Web design is the skill of creating presentations of content that is delivered to an end-user through the World Wide Web, by way of a Web browser or other Web-enabled software like Internet television clients.

The intent of web design is to create a web site that is a collection of electronic files that reside on a web server and present content and interactive features/interfaces to the end user in the form of Web pages. Such elements as text, bit-mapped images, and forms can be placed on the page using HTML/XHTML/XML tags. Displaying more complex media (vector graphics, animations, videos and sounds) requires plug-ins; they are also embedded into web page by using HTML/XHTML tags.

Once you understand the term web design you might be able to differentiate between website graphic designer and website designer. Another thing is pretty clear that web designers have acquired skills which they are not gifted so naturally; some have acquired good and some are less skilled. Now, as a project owner, it is your job to decide who is good for you.

Let us see qualities of good web designer. Here we will see interpersonal skills of web designer, not the technical aspects because technical aspects depend on the nature and demand of your project.

Good Planner

Good web designer need to plan ahead of the goals of website they are going to build. Web designer can put focus on possible people who might be interested in website.

Good Organizer

Web designing needs to deal with lots of stuff at a time. Designer should organize code files, images, texts, videos, audios, and a lot more. If designer don’t put all in well-labeled folders and organize it in a good manner then some elements might be misplaced.

Good evaluator

Your web application is one kind of sales representative for you; therefore it needs constant faultfinding eyes so that final shape is a robust design. Your web designer need such eyes so your site can catch maximum traffic and you get maximum customers for your business.

Good Partner

Your web designer should have proper understanding of your business just like a partner so he/she can formulate effective design strategy that gives your business a maximum benefit.

Good Portfolio

Your website designer should have a good portfolio means he/she should have past experience in related field or technology so he/she can perform challenging tasks with a confidence. For instance your project need Ajax based application and designer’s portfolio doesn’t see any usage of Ajax at all then there are fewer chances to implement it correctly.

Good Relationship

Once your web design project is finished; you may require updates in your website. In such scenario, you may again need the services of your previous web designer because he/she is the person who is most accustomed with your project. In short, your web designer should be relation oriented and should believe in long-term relationship.

Good Communicator

Finally, your website designer should be good communicator since communication is a vital aspect from the beginning to the end of the project. Project designer should extract all needed information from the clients, convert it into coding, and deliver results as per clients’ desire.

All of above are the qualities of good designer or rather a good professional, that’s why I believe that good web designers are made in heaven.

Web Hosting Basics

Building web site today has becoming easy as free online tools have been found on the internet. Anyone can go and use these tools to build his site. Building a site means to create the site web pages. These web pages are often HTML files. Once the overall process is done, the important question is where these files are hosted or located. This question is the basis for the web hosting term.

What meant by the question above is where these files are served. To get more insight let us see what happens when the internet user type an address in the browser requesting a web page. The browser inspects the address and determines the server address (also called web host address). The server is the main computer that stores the web site files. The web server or the web host then sends the needed page that requested by the client back to the browser.

From the above, the reader can see that any web site needs a remote computer which is called a server or the web host that stores the files and pages of the web site. When one of the pages or files stored on the server is requested by remote browser, the server sends it back to the browser. The web Host is like the home computer but has much more power capabilities. When talking about web hosting, we talk about choosing and storing the site files on the server.

When choosing web host available at certain company that offers the web hosting service, many factors must be considered. The two most important factors are the disk space and the bandwidth limit for the chosen web hosting service. The disk space is the maximum amount of hard drive allowed to be used by the user. The site owner must determine the size of his site and then choose a company that offers a space that he needs.

The bandwidth is the maximum size of bits that can be downloaded from the server over a certain period (which is often a month). If the server detects more bits are downloaded during that period, it will not allow any more pages to be seen by the visitor. This is not desired of coerce and the best host providers make this option unlimited. If the limit is reached it will be poor for the visitors and the search engines which will in turn decrease the ranking.

Once the web host is chosen and the web hosting account is setup, the nest step is to take the site pages and files and put it on the web host or the server that is chosen. When one of these files or pages is requested with the server address, they will be downloaded by the server if all is setup properly. The above process is called web site upload. It is the reverse of download.

To upload the web site, a certain protocol is called FTP standing for File Transfer Protocol. This protocol is designed for managing files on a computer from another remote one. It is composed of a series of commands that can be typed on Dos. Many programs are designed to upload the site using FTP instead of Dos. This will make it easier. CoreFtp is an example of FTP uploading programs.

Youssef Edward is an Electrical Engineer and he is the owner of tips-made-easy.info site. He studied too much in many branches of computer. Learn much more about web hosting and how to choose it in the links below.

Choosing a Web Designer

Many small business owners struggle with deciding on how to make the right choice for designing their website. They search the web for help with their website and find that the choice is harder than they thought. Currently there are (literally) millions of websites who claim to be professional web designers. However, one must be careful in choosing the right person or people in which to trust their company image. In this article, I will attempt to categorize web designers into manageable groups, and teach the reader the difference between the types.

Web designers fall into four general categories: freelance amateur, freelance professional, Web Design Company, Web Development Firm.

Freelance Amateur

The majority of web designers you will come across, especially searching the Internet, are freelancers. That is, individuals who do web design but are not employed by a web design company. Some are self-employed professionals but most of these freelancers are amateur-hobbyist types. They find a copy of FrontPage™ came with their MS Office™ Suite. They discovered how fun it could be to make web pages so they started telling their friends that they could “design” web pages.

The “pros” of using an amateur is that they are very cheap. The “cons” are too numerous to mention, but I’ll point out a few. They have no training; they have little knowledge of what makes a good website work; they do not understand HTML code or CSS but only FrontPage point and click; they do not understand general design and layout concepts and they have little real experience. The biggest reason they should be avoided for the serious businessperson, is that their work looks amateurish, which makes your company look amateurish. Who wants that?

Freelance Professional

A professional is often defined by simply being paid. People think that if you are paid for something, then you are professional. Maybe that’s true in the Olympics, but for the business services world, you are not a professional until you are established and respected as one by your clients and peers. Freelancer professional web designers are a giant leap from the amateur in that they have established a portfolio of respectable work. They have some sort of qualified training and experience and they have credentials that can be verified by contacting references. They have a good reputation with their clients and other professionals. In general, a good freelance professional web designer can be good person to have doing your site. But they are hard to distinguish from the amateur when you are just searching the web.

The upside is, if you find a good one they are significantly cheaper than a web design company. But that is usually the only upside. If the budget limits you, then a freelancer will do for a small project. But anything seriously important should be left to a professional company.

Some downsides to using a freelance pro are that they are usually part-time, meaning they are limited in how much time they can devote to your project. They are also limited in what they can do for you. Most freelancers are specialists in one area and generalists in everything else. Some have no skills in anything except their one specialty and often you will have to find others to fill roles. In addition, freelancers are not always cheap although many of them are aspiring to create their own company; some are highly sought after and charge $100 per hour or more for their work. My advice here is, if you have that much to spend, go with a company that has a team of professionals to get the job done in a timelier manner.

Web Design Company

This is the next step beyond a freelance professional. The web design company offers the “whole show”. They provide real project management and have pulled together a team of web experts to get a wider range of jobs done. A company can provide a much higher level of expertise in web design, programming, content development and more.

Such a company is usually very small, yet large enough to handle larger scale projects. Compared to the most highly qualified freelancer, a company has a diversity of talent and collaboration working for them. The end-result is usually a much higher quality product.

The only real drawbacks are on the one hand, the web design company is more expensive than a freelancer because there are many more people on the job. However, you get what you pay for rings true. On the other hand, for very large projects or long term development, web design companies may be too small and usually do not have the human recourses to accommodate that $500,000 contract. In the end, for serious business people looking for quality and professionalism and who can’t afford the big firm, this is the way to go.

Web Development Firm

As the title implies, a web development firm is like any traditional company. They have a staff of office workers, they have owners and officers, and they have a team of talented professionals who are paid a good salary for their work. They often have a sales force that do inside and outside sales. The quality of their work goes without saying, as you could not be so well-established by doing shoddy work. These firms offer teams of very talented professionals who work on your project and get the job done in a timely and extremely efficient manner. Additionally, they usually cover all aspects of website development including marketing and advertising. They may have teams of specialists that they can deploy to your location and work in-house under a temporary contract. The possibilities are endless.

If price is not an issue and the highest quality work is necessary, then this is who you want to do the job. For smaller budget businesses, a quote from an established web development firm might knock you off your chair, but know that companies who have project requirements that reach hundreds of thousands of dollars know the score. Thus, the only real drawback for a web development firm is that they are usually very expensive. Then again, cost is relative and bigger companies like to work with bigger companies.

In summary, the choice is yours. I would recommend for the serious businessperson, that you budget a decent amount of dollars to properly design and execute a professional website. I would avoid the amateur and outsource to an individual or company with good experience and reasonable rates to create my web presence. If money were no object, then I would only deal with established firms and pay the big bucks to get the job done right and done well.

Keenan Fitzgerald is a professional web designer and business owner of Core Web Solutions, a top web design company in New York. Core Web Solutions specializes in custom web design, small business web design, website security and search engine optimization (SEO).

10 Reasons Why You Need a Web Presence

Research by the Federation of Small Businesses has found that more and more small businesses struggling in the current difficult trading conditions are turning to the web as a cost effective way of boosting sales and profits, with almost two thirds now having an online presence. In affluent areas where disposable incomes and internet penetration levels are significantly higher than the national average, this trend has been particularly pronounced, resulting in an explosion in the number of locally based web designers.

If you are one of the dwindling number of businesses without a web presence how can you be sure that getting online will reap dividends in the long run? Below we outline 10 reasons why you need a web presence.

1. The web saves you money. A professionally designed website with a full year’s hosting and full after sales support can cost as little as £499, marginally more than a full page colour advert in one edition of the local newspaper. But whereas a newspaper advert has a very limited lifespan a properly maintained website will last for years, allowing you to stretch your marketing budget much further and cut long run advertising costs.

2. The web is easy to maintain. Printed marketing material soon goes out of date resulting in significant reprinting costs. But you can update your website content as often as you like at little or no additional cost ensuring that it remains up to date and relevant – for example, special offers, menu changes, new stock.

3. The web allows you to measure marketing results. With traditional forms of advertising it’s often hard to measure impact and cost effectiveness but with the web you get a rich source of visitor data that enables you to target your marketing efforts and measure results much more effectively. Most modern websites include a full web statistics package which can be particularly useful in tracking visitors to your website, what content they view and how many follow up their visit with a sales enquiry allowing you to tailor your content accordingly.

4. The web is interactive. Unlike traditional media which are a one way form of communication, the web allows businesses to conduct live conversations with customers. Link your website with Facebook for example and you have an instant source of customer feedback and can start to build long term customer relationships. Just do a twitter search on your local area and you will find pet coaches, chauffeurs, letting agents and a whole host of other local businesses all tweeting happily to existing and potential customers about what they are up to.

5. The web is customers’ preferred way of doing business. More and more businesses and consumers are actively opting to use the web to find local suppliers or products. More than half of all UK adults regularly shop online nowadays and the online share of the local market is set to continue growing strongly.

6. The web is a great time saver. How much of your time is taken up dealing with routine questions? Posting the answers on your website can save you time and provide added convenience for customers. Building interactive content – for example, online bookings and the ability to download money off vouchers will provide even greater benefits. Offering added value features like these has enabled many local restaurants to ensure that their bookings have remained healthy during the economic downturn.

7. The web has no geographical boundaries. At the present time your territory may be confined to the local area but why stop there? With the web you could be offering your products and services across the whole of your county, region, the UK or even globally. All at little or no additional marketing cost.

8. The web is always open for business. Available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, the web allows your business to keep working and capitalise on valuable sales opportunities while you sleep. And with many customers no longer working a traditional nine to five working pattern the ability to browse or shop whenever it suits them is a real benefit that will have them coming back to you time and time again.

9. The web is a powerful marketing tool. By collecting data about customers and visitors to your site you can customize and target your marketing campaigns with pinpoint accuracy, yielding much better results than the hit and miss approach offered by traditional media.

10. The web increases sales. Independent research by the Federation of Small Businesses has demonstrated that the businesses who are doing relatively well in the economic downturn are those who have learned how to use the web to give them an edge over the local competition, with nearly half reporting that a web presence has increased their turnover by a fifth or more.

Jan Willis is the Activ Web Design adviser for the West Essex area.

If you are a business owner operating in the Wanstead, Leytonstone, Loughton, Woodford and Buckhurst Hill area and would like to know more about how a web presence could help you out-compete your rivals speak to us today.

Our aim is to offer you a professional, affordable, fixed price web solution. We are not like most other web designers out there – we won’t be trying to confuse you with technical jargon, instead we will make the whole process as simple and hassle free as we possibly can. We want to work closely with you to create a website we are both proud of which will benefit your business / organisation for years to come.

Selecting a Reliable Web Host

In addition to finding a professional, affordable web site designer, securing a web host is another crucial step in the web site design process. A web host is a company that stores your web site’s files. All the pages you see on the net are a collection of pages stored in an online folder. You pay a web host to store your files in its online folder. Having a reliable web host is crucial to your business. Every time you send a potential or current client to your site, you need it to be up and running error-free. Since this is so important, we have listed a few guidelines in selecting a reliable web host:

How cost effective is this web host?
Before selecting a host, shop around and make sure the price and features of the account you are considering are competitive for the industry. Remember: expensive does not mean best! You do not need a well-known hosting provider if a smaller company can provide the same services more effectively and for 1/2 the price.

Does the host have a proven record of reliability?
There are TONS of web hosting companies on the net as I am sure many of you realized as soon as you searched for “web hosting company” in your search engine of choice. Top rankings in Google, MSN, or Yahoo do not guarantee a reliable company. These rankings only guarantee that a company spent time and/or money on search engine optimization (getting its site to the top of the charts). Before you purchase web hosting, ask other business owners which company they recommend and why. Also, check out forums such as Web Hosting Talk. This forum allows customers to sound off about their web hosting company (positive and negative comments are welcome). Here you can hear what customers have said about their hosting experience with company XYZ before you buy.  Also, ask your colleagues or web designer for hosting information.  Some of the best companies can be found through word of mouth referrals.

Is it easy to leave if I change my mind about this host? 
This is a crucial question that many small business owners do not consider. Small business owners do not always realize that hiring a web site designer and securing a web host can be affordable. Instead, they look for an all-inclusive web hosting package that offers pre-built web site templates or site builders. These are tools are helpful ONLY IF you plan to stay with that hosting company throughout the life of your web site. You would be using the web host’s design software, so if you left, the web host would still own your web site files, leaving you to start designing your site from scratch. Before using a site with pre-built templates or site builders, find out if you are allowed to keep your web site if you later decide to move to another host.There are also a few other items to consider: site uptime (is the site guaranteed to be available 99.9%), late billing consequences (is there a grace period, or will site be immediately taken down), and frequency of back-ups (if the web hosting company’s servers go down for any reason, will your site have been backed up and ready to go once the problem is resolved, or will your site be lost).

As a precaution, always back-up a copy of your web site to your home or work computer’s hard drive. This may not be possible if you use a pre-built template or online site builder software, but it is important in case something happens to the hosting company. Remember to always read the fine print of all hosting contracts you sign (albeit digitally) AND to choose a host that allows you to keep a back-up of your web site on your home or work computer (without any extra costs or fines).

How reliable is the customer service/technical support team?
If your site goes down unexpectedly, the hosting company should have an answer as to when it will be back up almost immediately. When problems with your web site arise, or if you have a question about setting up your account, technical support should be able to you. Make sure the host you use either has a posted customer service policy, has good customer service ratings on Web Hosting Talk or comes highly referred by one of your associates.

If you are unsure, one way to test the effectiveness of the company’s customer service is to send a pre-sale question to the customer service team to see how long it takes you to get a response. If it takes 3 or 4 days to answer a question about a potential sale (MONEY), then it will probably take twice as long as to answer a technical support question (when you are already a paying client).

After following these steps, your small business should be on the right track to selecting a reliable web host for your company’s web site design project.

Web Development and Cross Web Browser Compatibility

Does your website look great in Firefox and Safari, but a dog’s breakfast in Internet Explorer?

If so then you need to read this, web development and cross browser compatibility is a very serious issue that should be tackled by any professional web development company or individual.

Web development companies and individual developers if professional should address this issue with their clients to ensure the clients brand and web design looks identical across the most popular browsers.

From Internet Explorer to Opera which are included in the top 5 most used internet browsers (based on statistics taken in October 2010), any professional web development company or individual developer need to keep vigilant with their web browser compatibility checking.

To stay on top of this pressing issue there are a number of free websites available that you can use which will take sample website screen shots of your website and how it appears on selected web browsers.

Easiest way to find these web browser checking sites is to Google the following phrase: “How does my website appear on other web browsers?” This is the current Market Share for the top 5 most popular web browsers as of October 2010: Information source here

  • Microsoft Internet Explorer – 59.18%
  • Mozilla Firefox – 22.83%
  • Google Chrome – 8.50%
  • Safari – 5.36%
  • Opera – 2.29%

In summary cross browser compatibility is one of the key issues that arise when developing a brand new website or custom website application.

It is best practice to ensure your client’s website looks as identical as possible across the most popular browsers. However we do agree that there are a lot of differences in the way some of these web browsers operate and the various scripting and web coding languages they use and their interpretation of this.

So really a lot of these issues can be solved during the development of the website itself. The easiest way to avoid issues is to work with a web development company that already knows the ins and outs of cross browser compatibility.

4 Tips To Ensure You’re Not Losing Customers Because of Web Browser Issues

  1. Download the top 5 most popular web browsers to your pc or notebook and test your website thoroughly on each of them.
  2. Discuss any issues with your web development company or professional developer.
  3. Resolve these issues by checking supported web languages by checking compatibilities for the web browsers themselves.
  4. Web languages to check that appear differently across most web browsers include: HTML v1-5, CSS v1-3 these are the main two that cause the most common problems with web design and browser issues.

If you are the client I strongly suggest you address these issues with your development company. If you are the supplier, I once again strongly suggest you address these issues on the behalf of your client.

Ensuring your browser compatibility is as good as it can be will mean that you or your client potentially won’t lose business leads from customers using one of the top 5 web browsers.

Also customers that may want to purchase off an ecommerce or online shopping website may be put off purchasing because of these browser issues. Online business is serious business – take cross browser compatibility seriously as it can mean increased or lost business for you and your client.

Ben Davis is the sales and project manager for MediaCore a Specialist Web Company based in Auckland, New Zealand. He has had 6+ years of experience managing web design and development projects for his clients. He is also the author of ‘5 Tips To Search Optimize Your Business’.

MediaCore is Auckland New Zealand’s Leading Specialists for Web Design and Web Development. We provide professional and high quality web design and web development services that will meet all your online business needs. We are specialist Magento eCommerce and Joomla CMS web designers and developers.
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Free Web Hosting Sites For Your Business

For a first-time user, paid web hosting may seem unnecessary when a simple internet search pulls up free hosting alternatives running into the 1000s. Of course if you look deeper into the offers, then obvious differences appear: free web hosting comes at a price (pun intended) in that disk space, bandwidth and services will be less than paid for sites, and often advertising (which is how the service can be offered free) may seem out of place, or worse still, over the top.

For the professional or business website, paying a nominal monthly or annual charge through hosting companies (a lot of whom offer free trial periods, or upgrades from free service start-ups) will be the way to go. In the following list of hosts, many offer a “try before you buy” business plan, and this is a good reason to use a free hosting service in the short-term.

But for individuals, or small businesses or groups that do not have a problem with advertising and only need a limited number of website options, then free (and limited) web hosting is a suitable choice.

Please Note:

Do always read the Terms and FAQs: offers and services can alter at the stroke of a keyboard button!

Bandwidth is used each time a visitor views your site’s content: a 1 MB file uses 1 MB of bandwidth each time the file is viewed.

Web Storage/Web Space/Online Disk Space is just like your own computer’s hard drive: there’s only so much space. More space means more room for site content like pictures, videos, and documents.

10 Web Hosts with Free Services

Yola

Offering website hosting and design with a WYSIWYG (What You See Is What You Get) tool, as well as controlled advertising, Yola makes website creation simple. Small business and solo users will be able to build on their original sites with paid-for add-ons when the situation arises, and new web users have a library of free designs to choose from, as well as paid-for premium themes. A good starter choice for new starters, especially with the options for growth.

Webs

Yes, that’s their name (perhaps “Internets” was taken?). With a point-and-click (WYSIWIG again!) site builder, this web host and design site offers plenty to the most un-technical among us. They offer a Mobile Website App to give people visiting your site from a Smartphone a mobile-friendly experience. Services include domain name – and the option to transfer, email, 40 MB Web Space and 100 MB Bandwidth on their free option.

www.gbbo.co.uk (Getting British Business Online)

Getting British Business Online is a joint initiative from Google, Enterprise UK, BT, e-skills UK and many other partners to help small businesses create their first website and understand the opportunities offered by the Internet. Their website proudly proclaims that users can create a website for their business in 20 minutes. A WYSIWYG tool means, like many other free hosting sites, technical knowledge of the web is not needed. As well as the customisable website, users will receive a.co.uk address, regular updates, and a business email.

FreeServers

With over 4 million websites under their belt, this web hosting provider has the age and experience that means a lot of the kinks of web hosting services have been ironed out. With similarities to 50megs (see below), this established service offers 50MB Web Space and 1 GB Monthly bandwidth, and is supported by (some may say heavy) advertising.

FreeHostia

From their busy (and pretty) website, this web hosting company offers a free service with 250 MB Web Space, 6 GB Monthly Bandwidth and 3 emails. Offering both Joomla and WordPress templates for the blogging side of your site, this service has one-click set-up, 24/7 Customer Support, and is bannerless – good news if you don’t like advertisements.

FortuneCity

Like many other hosts on the list, FortuneCity has a free service that will be enough for some users, and an affordable option that would do for most. The free service has 1 GB Web Space and Unlimited Monthly bandwidth, as well as their own blogging tool. Having been around since 1997, they are well-used, well-tested, and well-known, and upgrading to their Affordable package means users may cut out advertising.

Bravenet

Ad-supported free hosting, and plenty of scope with premium paid-for packages, this Web Host offers multi-domain hosting, 5 MB Web Space and 1.5 GB Monthly Bandwidth. Bravenet has a number of options available if the free service satisfies but you still want more, and is a well-known name in the industry.

AwardSpace

Offering a free service with 250 MB Web Space and 5 GB Monthly bandwidth, this free web host has some impressive numbers. They are also upfront about the limitations of their free service, which includes a limit on outgoing emails, file sizes, and no site builder. However, for the smaller website this host is an excellent option.

Agility Hoster

A free web hosting service, with the option to upgrade to paid personal or business plans, which is another good example of a suitable candidate for polished personal websites and small businesses. Their service includes two domains, 200 MB Web Space and 5 GB Monthly bandwidth, numbers that are not uncommon on paid hosting sites.

50megs

There may be a lot of ad placement at 50megs, but that hasn’t stopped the web hosting company offering its services since 1995, and they have had plenty of satisfied customers! As well as their own website templates, users can copy pre-existing sites over to the service. Anyone doing a web search (and others have commented, too) will notice that 50megs and FreeServers both have websites and services that are (ahem!) alike… with 50MB Web Space and 1 GB Monthly bandwidth.

Infinity Web Design can build, host and optimise your site. Infinity make your life easier by combining all the services available on the internet into one affordable package and our dedicated team are here to help every step of the way.

Ways To Design Your Own Website

Creating and designing your own web site may sound like a tedious task, but it is actually easy to do, once you learn a few basic things. If you want to start your own web site in order to promote your firm, a line of products or a service, it makes sense to ask a professional to create a site for you as it could greatly impact your business. On the other hand, if you just want some space on the Internet to call your own, creating a web site by yourself will be a fun learning experience. Here’s what you need to do.

The first step is to get your own domain name or in other words to decide what name you want to give your site. You need to think carefully about the kind of domain name you want, because your web site will be known by that name for life. So make a list of unique site names that you like; you might also pick based on keywords you want your site to rank for in the search engines. In order to get the rights to the domain name of your choice, you also need to pay an annual fee to a registrar. If you feel you need a bit of guidance in deciding a good domain name, simply surf the net for inspiration!

Next, you need to decide which web host you want to choose. Think of a web host as a company with plenty of computers that are always connected to the Internet. When you decide to sign up with a specific web host, all the pages of your site will be ‘hosted’ by them, making your site accessible to others. Remember to carefully analyze various clauses before actually registering with a web host. A few points to keep in mind is looking at the actual amount of web space you will get, the reliability and access speed, bandwidth allotment and also if your web site is required to display any advertisements on the host’s behalf.

Now comes the important part of web site content. The kind of content you display on your site will play a crucial role in determining web traffic, which in turn will decide your site ranking on search engines. Let’s be honest. Do you really want to take the trouble to create your own web site, only to find that nobody even knows it exists? So, in order to avoid that kind of a scenario, it makes sense to visit other sites that are in the same industry as yours and get a general idea of the kind of surfing experience they impart. Doing a bit of keyword research will help you understand popular search terms that could lead people directly to your site. Using the right Search Engine Optimization (SEO) techniques such as embedded links and title tags can make your site more search engine friendly.

Assuming that you will be doing the entire designing of the site yourself, it’s important to first visualize it in your mind. How do you want your web site to look? What should be the colors of the fonts used? Should there be graphics, flash based animations or videos in your site? Once you have the basic outline of your web site in mind, it becomes easier to get started and improvise as you go along. If you prefer to invest in a good commercial web editor, then Dreamweaver is one of the best options to consider. If you prefer to use free software such as free HTML editors, then there are many highly regarded names available which even come with a complete guide on how to use them. It’s easy to get carried away whole designing your site and letting your creativity run wild, but don’t over look a few basic points which can help you get noticed on search engines faster. Adding original text and flash videos, adding title tags, including active links, error free HTML and registering your web site with a commercial web host are a few tried and tested ways to make your web site search engine friendly.

Now it’s time to test your web site on individual browsers. Since you can’t really tell which browser your guest will be using, it makes sense to test your web site on the most frequently used Internet browsers such as Internet Explorer, Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, Opera and Safari. Just ensure that you test your web site on browsers which are the latest released version. Doing so, will help you figure out if your site has any broken links, errors in code or needs to be tweaked further.

If you feel that the basic version of your web site is ready, now is the time to submit it individually to search engines such as Google or Bing. This ensures that your site shows up when specific relevant keywords are used and also simultaneously increases web site traffic. You may even want to consider promoting your web site in other ways and if you have the moolah to spend, a spot of advertising or internet marketing will only help get the right attention. You can make more changes to your site when and as needed, depending upon other features that you may want to add later.

Now all you need to do is spread the word about your new web site to friends and family and don’t forget to pat yourself on the back for all the hard work you put in!

S. George writes about several topics, including site design. She does work for different companies including a company that does professional Tulsa web design work and Tulsa search engine optimization and internet marketing.

Top 10 Website Launch Tips

There are close to 130 million web sites on line at the moment and every day, 6,000 new web sites launch, creating entrepreneurs by the thousands. The world wide web is a great way to take control of your professional life (you’re the boss) or to add a few bucks to your household income each month while you keep your day job.

A web site launch is exciting and cause for celebration – if you do it right. If you don’t do it right, your pixel-based dream biz will end up on the trash heap along with millions of other sites built on a dream but launched on a prayer.

Even well-optimized, well-designed and -built web sites take time to get a little recognition from search engines like Google, Bing, Ask, Yahoo and the other 4K search engines crawling the web at any one time. But there are some things you can and should do before launch date to improve your chances for web-based business success. Here are a few tips that’ll tip the scales of success in your favor.

1. Don’t do any SEO…yet.

Search engine optimization is tricky business but one thing is etched in stone. A search engine is based on the relevance and utility of its search engine results pages or SERPs.

So, no search engine is going to send its users to a web site that is “Under Construction.” Until you have all of your pages in place, your navigation bar hooked up and your opt-in module in place, stay off-line. If your half-built site is inadvertently spidered by Google, you’ll get slammed for delivering a half-built site and lots of blank pages.

And it can take years to recover, Search engines aren’t very forgiving.

2. Create an off-site blog.

Now that doesn’t mean you can’t advertise your upcoming launch. Create an off-site blog using WordPress, Blogger, Typepad or another blogging platform and start posting articles of interest to your target demographic – your market.

Don’t link these blog posts to your web site until you actually launch. Search engine bots and people follow links and, again, if a bot or a human discovers a half empty web site, chances are they won’t be back.

Instead, provide blog visitors with useful, helpful, FREE information. Announce the launch date of your web site but don’t send your blog fans to your web site until it’s locked down tight.

3. Develop your list of keywords.

Keywords are the search terms that people use when trying to find your web site. Start by taking a look at Google’s Keyword Generator, a great tool for first-time web biz owners. The keyword generator provides actual search terms that have been entered by Google users in the past 30 days.

Choose keywords that are specific to the topicality of your web site. For example, if you sell alternative medical cures and supplements, you’ll discover that the search term “self help” is used over one million times each month. But “self-help” can include everything from career coaching to weight loss to strength training. It’s too broad a term for your web business that sells tinctures and alternative medical treatments.

Developing a good list of 15-20 key words and keyword phrases is one of the most important pre-launch steps you’ll take. And, you’ll, no doubt, tweak your keywords over time. Some keywords will drive more traffic than others. The ones that drive traffic are keepers. The ones that don’t drive traffic are dropped and replaced with stronger keywords.

4. Open and finance an AdWords account.

Google’s AdWords is a pay-per-click advertising program. It’s a little complicated for first-time users so some practice and some study will improve your AdWords results.

With AdWords, advertisers bid for certain keywords – the words that search engine users enter into the search box when they conduct a web search. Some keywords are used more frequently. Others not so much.

You can open an AdWords account, set the parameters for where you want your blue cubes to appear (and not to appear) and even tell Google when to begin your AdWords campaign for just $5.00.

You may pay $3, $4 or $5 for the most popular keywords. The highest bidder gets the best position in the skyscrapers that appear on the right hand side of each Google search engine result page (SERP). Take your time, here. Sure, you can start for as little as $5.00 but you can quickly find yourself spending hundreds of dollars on AdWords and not seeing the results you expected.

That’s why a pre-launch practice session or two will pay off long-term. Understand how PPC programs work and you’ll make the best use of this advertising channel.

5. Create payment gateways.

How will prospects pay for your products or services? There are several options, here. PayPal has a commercial account option. Google Checkout is growing in popularity. The problem with these payment gateways is that they take visitors off your web site and they may never return.

Not all visitors have PayPal accounts so that’s a dead end. Consider adding a merchant account to your web site. These payment gateways enable buyers to pay securely with their credit cards, though the merchant account company will take a big bite out of your profit margins, often collecting 3%-4% of the total purchase each customer makes.

That slows down web site growth to profitability but it keeps buyers on your site and provides a payment gateway that anyone can use – as long as they have a credit card.

The more ways buyers can pay, the more buyers your site will attract. Make it simple and secure to buy from you and, in no time, you’ll start to see repeat buyers – the best friends a new web site owner has.

6. Create a compelling headline.

Why should your first-time site visitors stay on site?

You have less than 10 seconds to capture the attention of new site visitors. So, create a headline for your home page that clearly and simply explains what your new web-based business is all about.

The headline should indicate that your site delivers solutions to visitors’ problems. Low prices, free give-aways, free shipping – all attract attention and keep visitors on site longer. And the longer a visitor stays on site, the more likely she is to buy something, or pick up the telephone and give you a call. Consider your headline the most important piece of site copy you develop.

It is.

7. Refine your web site text.

Add your strongest keywords to strong text – headlines, sub-heads or text that’s bolded, italicized or underlined. This tells search engine spiders that this is important information.

Also, your site text should focus on the objectives of the site visitors, NOT your objectives. Your objective might be to generate sales of your products, so you might be tempted to load your text with sales hype. Remember, your objectives and the objectives of site visitors are not necessarily the same. Attend to the needs of visitors and success will follow organically.

8. Simplify, simplify, simplify.

Everything about your web site should be simple.

The text should be simple to read or scan. Use bullet points and avoid using jargon or industry-specific words that might be unfamiliar to some visitors. If the site visitor doesn’t get it, he isn’t going to buy from you. Write text in simple, short sentences at an 8th grade reading level to ensure that visitors understand what your site is about and why it’s worth exploring further.

9. Stress test before launch.

Your pre-launch web site resides on a web host’s server. It might be the server your programmer uses or it might be your own server with your own domain. In either case, you can ask friends and family to put your site to the test – the stress test.

Send the link of your site-in-progress to friends and family and ask your testers to try to make the site crash or mis-perform. Are all links connected? Does the color motif shift depending on the browser the tester is using? Ask testers to do everything wrong – to intentionally crash the site. Why? Because if testers can find the dead-end link, a lot of your site visitors will find it, too.

10. Just before launch, submit a site map to Google, Yahoo and other search engines.

Invite search engines to visit and crawl your site the day before you do a hard launch. A soft launch is just for friends and family who will provide their input on how to make the site better. A hard launch occurs when you “go live.”

The day before you undertake a hard launch, submit a site map to the major search engines. This is an invitation to Google and the others to crawl your site and index it within the taxonomy of the search engine index.

Some web sites are never found by spiders. For other site owners, it could be months before a Googlebot finds your site. By submitting a site map to the most popular search engines, you provide a map that spiders can crawl to insure that all pages of your site are indexed the first time through. You also tell the search engine what your site is about, how to navigate the site and which pages to crawl and which pages should not be crawled -pages, like your back office or your data base.

One final thought: be patient. Expect to see some growth in visitor traffic in the first few weeks but typically, it takes 60 to 90 days before you start to see organic search engine results – your link on Google’s SERPs based on the keywords you’ve chosen.

So, even as your programmer in Bangalore or Bangor is creating the HTML code to create your site, there’s still plenty you can do to ensure a successful launch and, in a couple of months, a growing web business.

Even if you haven’t hired a programmer yet, it’s time to get to work. Success on the world wide web is not a given and the more preparation you do before the hard launch, the more likely you are to see successful results.

Ms. Rosendahl has over 19 years experience in systems analysis, hosted applications, and management as well as 13 years experience in web hosting and Internet marketing. Ms. Rosendahl has a Bachelors from Houston Baptist University with a double major in Computer Information Systems and Business Management. Stephanie is the founder and CEO of Austin, Texas firm – GreenHostIt.com green web hosting.