Check out the 4 basic steps to get you started on how to create a website
Have you ever been frustrated by not knowing how to create a website for your company or personal project? Your potential customer tries to find your business website and… nothing!
Not having your own presence in the digital environment, currently, can even discredit your company.
Of course, having a fanpage on Facebook or YouTube channel is extremely relevant, both for boosting your presence in Google searches and for bringing together the audience that is present on social media, but it’s not enough.
Creating a website of your own, in addition to giving you a safe haven and a face of your own, allows your business to truly enter the Digital Marketing of Results, by allowing the creation of conversion pages and a blog to attract organic traffic, by example.
Your site doesn’t need to be perfect in the beginning, it just needs to exist!
Blue World City will show in this post that it is not that difficult to take the first steps. So, let’s briefly explore 4 basic steps to get you those first few notions about how website creation works.
The 4 steps to creating a website
- Register your domain
- Hire a hosting service
- Choosing a good website builder
- Define a template to use
Check each of the steps below in detail.
1. Register the domain
The domain is the name of your website, its identity, for this reason, it must be chosen carefully. The domain is usually the name of your company or project, followed by a ending. The most popular – and recommended – are .com or .com.br, but there are numerous other suffixes such as .net, .edu, .org, .gov, .info, .biz etc.
It is important to emphasize that when creating your website, it is much more advantageous for you to buy the domain instead of using platforms in its free versions. When you use the name of these platforms in your domain, you are automatically transferring the authority of your website to them.
Also, it makes your website look unprofessional. Examples: yoursite.wix.com, yoursite.blogspot.com, yoursite.wordpress.com.
You can register your domain on several sites: Registro.br, Hostinger, HostGator, among many others. The values vary according to the chosen termination (.br is usually more expensive), with the plan, etc. Most of them will now offer a website hosting service, which is our next step.
Also see some important considerations for choosing your domain. He needs to be/be:
- Available: Availability is very important as many domains have already been registered. The best way to increase your chances of having the domain name you want is to be specific in your choice and look for a name that is out of the ordinary and represents your brand.
- Simple and easy: your website address should be easy to understand. For example, after listening to it only once, would anyone be able to type in your domain name?
- Short: Your domain must be short: use a maximum of three words, preferably no more than two.
Tip: About domain extensions
More recently, alternative domain and email extensions to the traditional “.com.br” have emerged.
In addition to international extensions such as “.com”, it is now possible to register domains with generic endings such as “.top”, “.site”, “.club”, “.online” and many others. There are more than a thousand options available.
Both international endings such as “.com” and generic extensions can be registered if you want to increase security so that no one else uses the name you have chosen for your domain, as well as increasing the chances of memorization or mitigating typos of your customers.
2. Hire a hosting service
Hosting is the storage service that makes your website available to anyone who wants to visit it. Companies that provide this service have several plans, from some simpler (and cheaper) to others with personalized options.
You can choose to register your domain and host your website with the same company, which is generally cheaper.
There are several hosting plans. The most popular are:
- Shared Hosting: In shared hosting, the same server can host hundreds of websites. Thus, each site within the server has a certain quota of memory, disk space, etc. This means that the website will have a lower performance when compared to dedicated hosting. At the same time, the cost of hosting will also be lower.
- Dedicated Hosting: While in shared hosting the server is used by several websites, in dedicated hosting your website will have the server fully available. Dedicated hosting has a higher cost, however it offers greater security for sites that have a high number of simultaneous accesses.
- VPS: It is the acronym for Virtual Private Server, that is, Virtual Private Server. In this type of hosting, users share a server, but each private server is isolated from the “server next door”, which affects the site’s performance less.
The ideal is for you to consult the functionalities of each one according to the server you are hiring to know which one is more worthwhile for your business.
3. Choose a CMS
After having hired the hosting service, you need to start building your website.
A good website builder for initial projects will be one that will dispense deep knowledge of HTML and will also make it easy for you to create the template, as we will talk below, as well as more application options to optimize your website and your experience.
>> Also read: Create a free website: find out how to have a website and see 5 free tools
In a website project, something that can bring a lot of productivity to you and your team is the use of a CMS (Content Management System).
It is a system used to manage the content and behavior of certain elements of the website in a simpler and more intuitive way, often without the intervention of a programmer.
For example, some changes you can make yourself are:
- Make changes and corrections to the content of a page (text and images);
- Change the order of items that appear on the menu;
- Change page title and meta description of pages for better SEO;
- Post new blog posts.
There are several paid and free CMSs available on the market, each with its own specifics and suited to different business objectives.
For example, an ecommerce may find it easier to work with Magento or PrestaShop (free), or with paid platforms such as Integrated Store, CloudShop and others available.
For a complete website or blog we recommend using WordPress.org (which has more autonomy than WordPress.com ) or Joomla! , which are easy to install CMS’s (Content Management System). There are many servers that offer a quick and convenient installation, without the need for a lot of technical knowledge.
If you want ease of installation, look for servers that have this functionality and with a few clicks your site will be online.
How to create a website on WordPress.org
Here at Digital Results, we use WordPress for the blog. If you need to, you can also install WordPress manually via Cpanel on your hosting service. Basically, this process consists of four steps:
- Download and unzip the WordPress package, easily available in Portuguese on the platform’s homepage ;
- Create a WordPress username and database via Cpanel directly on your hosting service;
- Create and edit the wp-config.php file from the sample in WordPress files;
- Finish installing WordPress directly on your website.
For a detailed explanation of this process read the post How to create a WordPress blog: the complete walkthrough.
How to create a website on WordPress.com
If you still need something even more simplified, you can register your site on WordPress.com and pay an annual fee (in dollars) to register a domain there or to map an existing domain and use it as an address within WordPress.
The difference between wordpress.com and wordpress.org is simple. According to WordPress itself:
- WordPress.org is the WordPress development site (the tool to create blogs ), where you can download the software to host on your own ISP/host, and where you can use all the themes you want, the extensions (plugins) what you want, customize (CSS for example), change languages, modify the source code and so on;
4. Choose a template
To create your website, the ideal is always to choose a responsive template – which is no longer a trend but a reality of current Digital Marketing. Responsive templates are those that adapt to the browser screen being used to open the website.
For example, if you open the same website on your mobile phone that you had opened on your computer and the text adapts to the smaller screen, this is a responsive template. You can do this test by changing the size in the browser itself: if the texts and images adapt, you will be working with a responsive template.
Check out 9 reasons why you should use a responsive design on your website.
You can choose templates that come with the website builder. In the case of WordPress and Joomla!, there are thousands of templates, with infinite possibilities. They can be paid or free – it all depends on what you want the site to look like.
Some sites that have themes for WordPress and/or Joomla! they are:
Remember, there are four basic steps: register a domain, choose a hosting service for this domain, opt for a website builder and choose a template – preferably, responsive.
Try to keep in mind that your website must have the face of your business or project – from the chosen domain to the layout of the pages.
Even if, at first, the site doesn’t look exactly as you’re imagining, you can make some adjustments from time to time to customize it. What really matters to take the initial steps in Digital Marketing is that your brand is present and can be found virtually.
If you are still not totally convinced about having a website or not, below we have separated 4 Digital Marketing strategies that you can apply even without having a website, check it out:
How to do Digital Marketing without a website?
As mentioned throughout this post, as it is the oldest and most known format in the online environment, the company’s website ends up being intuitively the first option to attack.
In fact, the website is an important piece on the Digital Marketing board, but if you are currently unable to prioritize this front, we have separated 4 strategies that can be done without a website. So no excuses not to start venturing into this world, huh?
1. Business Blog
The blog, despite the similarities, is a much simpler tool than the website. Our own case here at Resultados Digitais is an example of this, as we created the blog long before thinking about RD Station or the company’s website. Precisely because it is so simple and important, the only service we provide outside of consulting is the creation of blogs (only for clients).
The big difference from the blog to the website is in the published content. While the site usually has information about the company and its products, the blog has relevant content for an entire market. In other words, you have to know exactly who you’re writing for and generate value for that reader.
The content must also be guided by level of depth, while some readers are still in the learning and recognition phase of a problem, others are already mature and seeking support for the purchase decision. One of the great advantages of Digital Marketing resides precisely in this ability to talk to people at all stages of the purchase process .
We usually say in our materials that the content – and consequently the blog – are a permanent asset, as once published they will generate value indefinitely for the company. This value can be seen in the form of new readers, content source for other channels and recognition of your brand as an authority on a particular topic.
2. Attract and relate to your audience on social media
Practically every market has an audience on social networks, so having a good presence on these channels can bring very positive results for your company. One of the main reasons for this is that in these channels, users can talk about what and whoever they want, boosting word-of-mouth and directly affecting people’s view of the brand.
Monitoring this public opinion is important for two reasons: the first is to maintain the credibility of the brand by monitoring what is said about it, and the other is to get real insights and perceptions from your customers about your company and products. Together these practices can help you understand your company’s strengths and weaknesses and the best ways to improve them.
For companies that don’t have a website yet, having a company page in one of these media is essential to make the brand known and keep it alive. To start this work, it is very important to clarify the purpose of these media.
Here, unlike the blog and other channels, people are not actively looking to solve problems or learn something, they are usually having fun, ie, their focus cannot be directly on selling. Investing in social media means creating long-term bonds with your consumers and a win-win relationship with them through that relationship.
The ideal content for these channels are usually interesting articles, tips, dissemination of eBooks and the like, things that arouse the interest of the reader and direct him to another page where you no longer share his attention with other companies and friends.
As mentioned in the topic above, blogging is an excellent source of content for social media. It is well advised to share blog links, which will generate traffic and increase the reach of your content as readers perceive value in what you are talking about.
Maintaining a certain frequency in posts is also a good practice, preventing your company from being forgotten or becoming boring due to excessive content. Each social media has an ideal pattern of posts, it’s up to you to choose which ones are the most expressive for your business and how to deliver the greatest value to users.
3. Landing Pages to Convert Leads and Customize Communication
A Landing Page ( conversion page ) is a page with few navigation options, in which the visitor usually performs the expected conversion or leaves the page.
This page serves mainly to exchange relevant content for information about the visitor and your company. Its basic structure is an offer (ebook, discount coupon), a form for questions and a call to action, which works to direct the visitor to content related to this promotion.
Even if you don’t have your own domain, it’s very easy to use Landing Pages, as they are hosted in the very tool that offers it, as is the case with RD Station Marketing. In it, you will find optimized and ready-to-use templates for this type of page, with editable fields for your company’s text, colors and offer. In addition, the tool has a drag & drop Landing Pages editor, making your work even easier.
In the topic about blogs we talk about sending personalized content to Leads according to your interest and moment in the purchase process, here it is no different. In the case of social media where we talk about arousing the interest of a visitor who was not actively looking for something, we should direct them to an introductory content offer.
One way to generate more mature business opportunities is to work with paid media on Google. In this case, the Internet user is actively looking for something and that is why we can direct him directly to a Landing Page with more advanced content, which corresponds to the knowledge he is looking for. This type of Lead comes to you much more mature and has a considerably shorter purchase cycle.
For companies that are still developing a product, using Landing Pages to measure market responsiveness to the new product is a great thermometer. People don’t give out their contact information easily, and if your product doesn’t generate a sense of value creation for your visitor, you’re unlikely to convert.
4. Email Marketing to (re-)engage
So far we’ve gone through some channels to generate traffic and a tool to exchange your content for Lead information. But how to turn all this into revenue? The answer is relationships, and you don’t need a website for that.
With the information you got about your Leads, it is possible to create different hypotheses, whether to segment them by products they are interested in, geographic location or any other criteria. Lead segmentation for sending emails, by the way, is one of the most powerful features of RD Station Marketing.
As we’ve mentioned several times here on the blog, people are no longer willing to receive general promotions, and the better you can customize your message according to the person, the better your receptivity will be.
For this reason, the next step in our strategy is to segment your base into groups and create assertive messages to continue building the relationship. To better illustrate how this is done, I will show three use cases of Email Marketing for different business objectives:
As your Content Marketing strategy educates the market, your company starts to be seen as a reference in the subject. This authority has several positive impacts, and one of the main ones is customer loyalty.
Every company to make a sale has several costs, which are increased in the price of the product with a certain profit margin. The opportunity is there precisely in the vast majority of companies focusing solely on acquiring new customers, instead of working to retain those they have already conquered.
A customer who makes a second purchase or increases their plan for a given service is adding revenue without increasing their acquisition costs. Well done email marketing is a powerful tool for this, even if the volume of customers grows, tools such as marketing automation can give you the necessary intelligence to engage with Leads and customers with the right content at the right time and grow consistently the volume of bundling and resale.
Objective: work Leads from offline
For many businesses, participation in fairs and events is one of the main ways to expose the brand and acquire new customers. A great way to continue this relationship after events is to bring these Leads online, interacting with them via email.
As they are in specific events, these Leads are mature and have great potential to become customers, and when engaging with them, we can be more aggressive sending more advanced content in the purchase process.
Purpose: product/service launch
As we mentioned in the Landing Pages topic, when we have a product still under development, it is very important to check the market’s receptivity.
With Email Marketing we can have an alignment of expectations about the product and work to create expectations at launch. We used this strategy ourselves to make the very successful launch of marketing automation here at Resultados Digitais.
You can also get great results working in this direction. Despite the common sense that Digital Marketing depends on a website, we saw that it is perfectly possible to generate results even while it does not exist or is being redesigned.