Blog post 4, May 25, 2018
My Work-from-home Journey
Setting up your website is the easy part.
Hello everyone. People have been asking me how I set up my website. I am going to share the whole adventure with you. Setting up my website was nerve-racking, scary, exciting, and gave me that rush of accomplishing a goal. Because really, who has the money to hire a web designer when you are trying to launch a work-at-home business?
Not me. I am not tech savvy at all. But I did it and so can you.
Mistake Number One
When I decided that I needed a website everyone was telling me that I should go with WordPress. Everyone, meaning the people in my online classes. So I went to WordPress to build my website with zero knowledge. I was so frustrated I didn’t understand why the zip file wasn’t doing anything on my computer or why I just couldn’t figure it out. It didn’t work. After three days I was lucky enough to be in a group that had a free seven-day online course within her paid course on how to build a website. Apparently, you need a domain name and a hosting site.
I told you I didn’t know anything and I wasn’t tech savvy.
Now I knew I was eventually going to need a domain name, but I thought I just got it when I logged in to WordPress. Talk about not knowing what I was doing.
First, you have to get a domain name. I went to Namecheap. Why? Well because I was watching a how-to video, remember? So think of what you want your website name to be and expect them to kick back variations of it or they will kick it back with .com, .org, .net, and a couple of different ones I have never heard of. Talk about being excited when I chose my domain name because it was my business name dot com. I didn’t know that it wasn’t going to begin with a www domain name, but it worked. Remember hindsight is 20/20. With that being said I was able to get the domain name for $11.16 per year.
It was so cheap I went ahead and purchased a second one with a name that I have been kicking around so that it would be available if I ever decided to expand on that.
Next, you have to get your hosting site. Now, this is an area I did do some research on. I found out that it is best to keep your domain name and your host separate for a couple of reasons.
First, if someone can gain access to your hosting account, then it is possible that they will steal your domain name and you will be left with nothing. Second, if the same site is handling your hosting and your domain name and they go under financially, you could also potentially lose all of your information and hard work.
Now, who wants to lose all their hard work? Not me?
Finally, I chose to go with SiteGround. I researched a couple of others including Bluehost but liked what SiteGround had to offer along with its WordPress compatibility. The cost was only $47.40 for the year which works out to be $3.95 a month.
Once you create your SiteGround account, click on the orange c-panel button on the left side. When you get into c-panel, you can associate your domain name and set up using WordPress. Then you can create and set up your email addresses for your website in c-panel also. Go ahead and click on the icons and see what each one is for. You can’t break anything.
One More Thing
Once you do these steps now, you can create an account on WordPress.org if you haven’t already done so. Then start building your site. I went with WordPress.org as opposed to WordPress.com because I heard that WordPress.com had more advanced customization. Now that sounded a little too intense for me. So that is why I went with WordPress.org. They have really nice themes that fit your needs.
I heard that if you are going big with your business, you should purchase your theme. I half believe in that theory. I say half because for the small services that I provide I felt the themes that they had to offer worked flawlessly for my needs.
The only thing I did do was remove the “powered by WordPress” from the footer. I didn’t need to go into editing or learn to code. I just found the instructions watching a YouTube video and added the coding to the footer to hide what WordPress has written in their coding.
We are in the home stretch. Now that we are logged into our WordPress account you can choose a theme. Take your time go through each one, see how they scroll, see what you like and don’t like about them. They have a good selection of free themes. I went with Hestia because of the way it scrolled with photos in the background. I didn’t want a still white page with a bunch of writing on it. I also liked that the upper header tabs took you to other pages easily.
When you are logged in to the admin area of your site your dashboard will be on the left-hand side. To change the photos, logos, and tabs on your page you can click on the Appearance tab then click on the Customize tab. This action will replace your dashboard with a list of customizable sections on the left and your web page on the right. If you aren’t sure what areas on the left will affect which areas on the right, then start by clicking the edit pencils on your web page on the right. I watched hours of YouTube videos and spent about eight to ten hours straight building and tweaking my site. I know that there are tons of things on my website that needs improvement but just think of how much money I saved doing it myself. That is a complete and total WIN!
After creating my website, I have more confidence in my abilities to do things on my own. So to me, this is another win for the books. Each week I make a list of things that I have to get through or accomplish along with doing my proofreading. I have been able to prove to myself that it can be done as long as you don’t listen to that negative voice in the back of your mind. Now with that win in the books is there another subject you would like me to cover? Or do you want me to tell you how I structure and organize my day while working from home? Let me know in the comments section. I look forward to hearing from you.
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