1. Website Hosting
You can’t have a website without hosting it on some server. You could buy and maintain your own server, but that can take a lot of skill, time, and money. When it comes to getting a hosting service, there are a couple options:
- Shared hosting
- Dedicated hosting
- Virtual Private Server
The host that I use and recommend is BlueHost.
You can use different methods of constructing your website, but my recommendation is to use WordPress. It is power and relatively simple to learn. To understand how WordPress works, imagine your website as a car. You basically have a frame, a body, an engine, and additional features.
- WordPress is the engine. It makes everything run.
- A theme is the frame and body. It is how the website looks.
- Plugins are the additional features. It is how the website functions.
Regarding themes, there is a wide variety. There are thousands of free themes available in the WordPress repository. There are also a lot of themes that you can purchase, and the prices vary from tens to hundreds of dollars. What is best? Well, the one that does what you need it to. While there are many advantages to paid themes, sometimes a free theme fits the job best. I’ve experienced this while working with a few clients.
Along with themes, there are frameworks. These add extra functionality to themes. One such framework is the Genesis framework. They look great and have a lot of functionality built in. I’ve used the Genesis framework and themes for over a year, and have enjoyed working with them.
3. About Page
One of the vital pages beyond the homepage, is your About page. Here is a bullet list from Michael Hyatt’s book, “Platform:”
- Write in the first person
- Write in a conversational style
- Start with the reader’s priorities
- Tell them about yourself (brief summary)
- Tell them about your blog/website
- Set their expectations
- Invite them to subscribe
- Point them to your top posts
- Provide a full biography
- Tell them how to contact you
- Include a photo or video
- Add a colophon
- Consider a disclaimer
4. Contact Page
After your About page, you need a page that tells people how they can contact and interact with you.
5. E-mail List
They say that “the money is in the list.” So you should get an e-mail list and promote it on your website.