Building A Website With No Skills

 
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Old 02-26-2012, 01:35 AM   #1
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Building A Website With No Skills


My company is initiating a new marketing campaign, part of which is to establish a website. Initially we were going to outsource it, but considering the simplicity of the site we're looking for, my employer figured I should at least give it a shot first.

I'm computer literate - I just haven't delved into any site building at all since university and that was minimal at best. I've done a fair amount of research here and it looks like Wordpress is the easiest and best route to take, so I'm going to try that. I have access to Expression Web and Dreamweaver, but learning/relearning everything I'd need to know just seems like it wouldn't be cost effective for my employer at this point.

Now, I'll be locking down the domain and hosting early next week, and since I need to do that before I can install Wordpress and start working with it, I'm kind of doing research in the dark here.

I'm guessing a theme is completely necessary, but did most of you end up paying for one or using a free option? Any other general tips? I've browsed here a bit on this topic but it's hard to see what's applicable as I haven't been able to get anything up and running yet.

Thanks
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Old 02-26-2012, 08:03 AM   #2
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Re: Building A Website With No Skills


Go on Youtube and check out some tutorials, I'm sure they have lessons available. You can get free HTML, JAVA, CSS, PHP, Already made contact Forms on line or tutorials how to make them to suit your needs.

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Old 02-26-2012, 08:22 AM   #3
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Re: Building A Website With No Skills


Building a site with no skill is like building a house with no skill.
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Old 02-26-2012, 08:37 AM   #4
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Re: Building A Website With No Skills


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Originally Posted by BrandConst View Post
Building a site with no skill is like building a house with no skill.
True, it will take a long time to learn not to mention many sleepless nights of hair pulling, because if you miss one smallest component in the code, especially Java or PHP, it can take a while to figure this s^*t out. I been doing web-pages for 25 years as a hobby and I had quiet a few sleepless nights trying get something to work.
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Old 02-26-2012, 08:52 AM   #5
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Re: Building A Website With No Skills


I've used host monster for years.

It depends how complex your site is and the learn as you go method. Inexperience brings forth its own challenges. Have you looked at joomla as well?
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Old 02-26-2012, 08:56 AM   #6
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Re: Building A Website With No Skills


Quote:
I been doing web-pages for 25 years as a hobby and I had quiet a few
sleepless nights trying get something to work.
Wow... You were building websites before the Internet was invented... Why couldn't you have invented Facebook, Google, eBay or PayPal... lol... dammit...

You were playing around on BBS's (bulletin board systems) the precursor to the Internet... lol... Those were the good old days... One person at a time could login to a site, play some text based adventure games, download a single nudie pic of pam anderson... oops. lol...

Quote:
I'm guessing a theme is completely necessary, but did most of you end up paying for one or using a free option? Any other general tips? I've browsed here a
bit on this topic but it's hard to see what's applicable as I haven't been able
to get anything up and running yet.
If you're going this alone, look for a theme that offers great developer support so when you want to move things around, change things etc... you'll have access to a forum where people can help you. (responses can be slow, but helpful from most WP theme support forums)

You say this is for your new marketing campaign, yet the site is so simple that you should just build it yourself...

What is your companies goal with this marketing plan... What is the ACTION you are expecting people to take when they see your website...? Lead Capture? Phone Calls?

Carl
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Old 02-26-2012, 09:39 AM   #7
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Re: Building A Website With No Skills


Quote:
Originally Posted by carlsore View Post
Wow... You were building websites before the Internet was invented... Why couldn't you have invented Facebook, Google, eBay or PayPal... lol... dammit...

You were playing around on BBS's (bulletin board systems) the precursor to the Internet... lol... Those were the good old days... One person at a time could login to a site, play some text based adventure games, download a single nudie pic of pam anderson... oops. lol...
That about right, it was a blessing, it sure beats looking at Sears catalogs, waiting for that bikini issue As facebook goes, I wish I did, but was wasting my time on other things...
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Old 02-26-2012, 07:36 PM   #8
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Re: Building A Website With No Skills


Quote:
Originally Posted by carlsore View Post
Wow... You were building websites before the Internet was invented... Why couldn't you have invented Facebook, Google, eBay or PayPal... lol... dammit...

You were playing around on BBS's (bulletin board systems) the precursor to the Internet... lol... Those were the good old days... One person at a time could login to a site, play some text based adventure games, download a single nudie pic of pam anderson... oops. lol...



If you're going this alone, look for a theme that offers great developer support so when you want to move things around, change things etc... you'll have access to a forum where people can help you. (responses can be slow, but helpful from most WP theme support forums)

You say this is for your new marketing campaign, yet the site is so simple that you should just build it yourself...

What is your companies goal with this marketing plan... What is the ACTION you are expecting people to take when they see your website...? Lead Capture? Phone Calls?

Carl
As of right now, we're essentially looking to use it as a bit of a portfolio as well as the first step towards establishing a web presence. Basically, the site I'm creating now is just a placeholder for the next 12-18 months. Simple static site, company info, contact info, and a gallery.

Basically, we want the @domain.com email addresses, also be able to show clients that we have a web presence, and have that on our business cards.

I don't imagine that the site is going to be directly bringing us many, if any new clients at this time considering we're focusing on form to finish contracts for high-end residential and time and material service contracts for large firms (idealistic, I know), but establishing that web presence is our main goal at this point.

It looks like I'm pretty much set on going with wordpress for this phase. How does it display on mobile devices? That's one of the main reasons I wanted to stay away from flash.

Thanks for all the help and advice so far.
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Old 02-27-2012, 07:37 AM   #9
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Re: Building A Website With No Skills


Quote:
Originally Posted by gpw11 View Post
It looks like I'm pretty much set on going with wordpress for this phase. How does it display on mobile devices? That's one of the main reasons I wanted to stay away from flash.
There are lots of responsive wordpress themes out there, which automatically adjust to fit the browser on the fly.

E.g. go view this article and resize your browser window: http://coding.smashingmagazine.com/2...ve-web-design/
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Old 02-27-2012, 08:12 AM   #10
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Re: Building A Website With No Skills


Theres a lot of software out there that offers simple site builds. Some web host also provide these types of programs. Remember that if you use those you lose a lot of customization that will help you with SEO. Sometimes it is just better to spend the money and get a site built professionally.
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Old 03-05-2012, 07:41 PM   #11
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Re: Building A Website With No Skills


Website is up. Pretty much everything on there is a placeholder as of right now (backround, gallery images, words), but I'd love it if you could check it out and let me know what you think so far.

http://www.pmhomes.ca/
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Old 03-05-2012, 08:05 PM   #12
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Re: Building A Website With No Skills


The hardest part is getting it started. Keep working on it and you will get there.

That being said, if it has taken you a week to get to where you are now then you probably need to hire someone to get you started. If they set you up on a well designed wordpress theme then you can add to it from there.
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Old 03-05-2012, 09:19 PM   #13
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Re: Building A Website With No Skills


Looks good for just starting, - - keep pluggin' . . .

.
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Old 03-05-2012, 11:53 PM   #14
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Re: Building A Website With No Skills


nice house, the website is.... that's a really nice house.
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Old 03-06-2012, 12:34 AM   #15
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Re: Building A Website With No Skills


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nice house, the website is.... that's a really nice house.
Haha. Sadly, that's just a placeholder from google image search - I've yet to receive any of the pictures I'm going to be throwing up there.

Quote:
That being said, if it has taken you a week to get to where you are now then you probably need to hire someone to get you started. If they set you up on a well designed wordpress theme then you can add to it from there.
I hear you. I actually have really only been working on it today. I'm still on site full time and busting a great three hour commute, so that's been cutting into what I can do here. Now that the backend and hosting is setup though, It shouldn't be too hard to make things happen. The upside of wordpress I guess is that everything I've done with the free themes will be very easy to transfer over to a premium one should we go that route - or at least cut down on the time necessary for a web developer to set things up.
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Old 03-06-2012, 09:40 PM   #16
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Re: Building A Website With No Skills


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I hear you. I actually have really only been working on it today. I'm still on site full time and busting a great three hour commute, so that's been cutting into what I can do here. Now that the backend and hosting is setup though, It shouldn't be too hard to make things happen. The upside of wordpress I guess is that everything I've done with the free themes will be very easy to transfer over to a premium one should we go that route - or at least cut down on the time necessary for a web developer to set things up.
Great job and keep plugging on it.

I would get your content on there first then add your pictures (with the alt text) on each page to match the keywords your focusing on for that page.

A couple of plugins that will help you out are:

- All in One SEO Pack (this will add a form below each pages edit area. (You can fill out the Meta description, etc... for each page)

- XML sitemaps (it will submit your sitemap to the major search engines and you can click set your virtual robots.txt) *I would wait until all the pages are set-up and named correctly for this one though. You do not want google to index your site then you decide to change some names of the pages. Get those pages named keyword+location then submit after your content and pictures are alt tagged.

If your not in a competitive market you will be shocked at how fast google will recognize your site. Google loves new pages, I started an offsite blog to get some links to my money site and the darn thing outranked it for the first couple of weeks it was up.
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Old 03-07-2012, 11:03 PM   #17
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Re: Building A Website With No Skills


For your goal, I think you'd be crazy to learn how to build a site. You're going to spend atleast a month, and then it will look terrible.

1) Hire a designer using a freelance website like odesk.com
2) hire someone to take that design and turn it in to html/css
3) hire someone to add in any dynamic content like forms, database, etc.

You can do that all for under $2,000, easy.
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Old 03-10-2012, 09:43 AM   #18
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Re: Building A Website With No Skills


I love your testimonies page. Bam! amazing
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Old 03-15-2012, 09:56 PM   #19
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Re: Building A Website With No Skills


Quote:
Originally Posted by Bob Victorino View Post
For your goal, I think you'd be crazy to learn how to build a site. You're going to spend atleast a month, and then it will look terrible.

1) Hire a designer using a freelance website like odesk.com
2) hire someone to take that design and turn it in to html/css
3) hire someone to add in any dynamic content like forms, database, etc.

You can do that all for under $2,000, easy.
Don't use odesk.com unless you want to be bombarded by cheap Indians overseas who can't read, write or speak proper English.
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Old 03-18-2012, 06:59 AM   #20
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Re: Building A Website With No Skills


Given that logic, I could build a deck too. I wouldn't use it, but I could build it. A site is a little more complex than just slap a picture up there and wrap some words around it. Just sayin.

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