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Help recommend a website builder and web host?

by ajdressage / December 28, 2008 10:34 PM PST

Hi!

I am looking to create a website for my small business. I would like to create the website and make updates myself. The website would be only a few pages, describing the business, and would have photos and possibly some video (maybe just youtube links?), and maybe a blog. I have no need for any ecommerce. The website would be used to bring in potential clients so I would like it to look nice. I would also like to design it myself to keep costs low.

Is there a web design company out there that would have sufficient templates to work with? Do I need something like Dreamweaver? Would I be better off hiring someone to design it, if so where would I go to do that and what would be the costs? Is it better to have the web design and hosting done by seperate companies?

The only previous website building experience I have had is making very, very simple websites for class projects in college. Thanks in advance for your help

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wordpress would work best...
by DatR / December 28, 2008 11:42 PM PST

From your requirements, I think Wordpress would work the best for you. Take a look: http://wordpress.org/

Wordpress is a Blogging software that also lets you create Pages. So essentially can have a Blog and any number of static pages you want. Adding Youtube videos is fairly easy with Wordpress, and it comes with a WYSIWYG editor so modifying and adding content is pretty easy. Also, with Wordpress you can get Search Engine friendly URLs. So instead of something like domain.com/?p=123 you get domain.com/about-us/

There is lots of free themes you can use to keep costs down, like this Google Search:
http://www.google.ca/search?hl=en&q=free+wordpress+themes&meta=

All the free themes should be pretty easy to customize to how you would want it to look. Installing Wordpress, one of the Free Templates and getting the Search Engine Friendly URL's will take about an hour or so (provided you know how or have experience with that). Customizing the template can vary greatly depending on how much customization you are looking for.

I think the best bet would be to get someone to set up wordpress for you, customize the theme to how you design it and then after that you enter all of your content. So get a web design company to do the initial setup for you, and you do the rest.

Hosting and domain name, I would use a different company. Hosting companies are usually good for Hosting which is what they do. I use Domains at Retail ( http://www.domainsatretail.com ) Deluxe hosting package for my hosting of my sites (including Wordpress sites).

You can check out some other hosting sites at http://www.affordablesharedhosting.com with reviews and package listings to see if you prefer one of those companies.

If you need any more help just reply, and I'll be glad to help.

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Wordpress is great!
by darenshawn / January 5, 2009 11:48 AM PST

Totally agree that Wordpress is suitable for you! Not only the fact that it is easy to use but also they have a very large group of community helping each other in improving each's website. You can simply throw any question regarding Wordpress at http://wordpress.org/support/.

Even if you do not want to hire anybody, i think you will be fine working with Wordpress as it is very user friendly (seeing you have created website before, even a simple one)

I suggest you to try up Wordpress hosted blog first, if the feel is good for you, then get a web hosting and a domain name, as self-hosted Wordpress has more advantages than Wordpress-hosted.

Daren
bluehost

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There are several good options
by sniffle101 / January 5, 2009 12:37 AM PST

There are really two approaches to this.

The first approach is the "hosting first" companies. These are the folks like GoDaddy and Network Solutions who mostly want to sell you a domain name (URL) and sign you up to host your website and BTW have tools to build websites. These guys have hundreds of thousands of customers.

The next bunch are folks like Homestead, Volusion and Andyswebtools. These guys are more about giving you what you need to create a good website and they'll sell you a domain if you need one.
I've heard good things about all of them. Homestead is the biggest. Andyswebtools is really focused on what small business are looking for. They all run about $30 a month although some charge less if you only want a couple of pages.

Hope this helps and good luck.

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