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Web Design Basics
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Web Design Basics
All web sites have 3 major components. Some have more but all must
have these three.
- A name. This is referred to as a Domain Name,
or a Domain. You can also call it an URL. Generally you register
a domain name for 1 year or more, it is similar to renting a house.
- A home for the web site. We refer to this as web
hosting. This is the place on a high powered computer
(server) where your site and domain name are stored. Similar to
a document on a floppy disk. This server is connected to the internet
allowing anybody to access your site.
- The web site it self. Includes all images, text and any other
content or information you wish to present.
These 3 main components are all critical to a web sites success,
and should be chosen carefully. Below you will find some tips to
help you in your decision making process.
Domain Names. Most
commercial web sites have their own domain name or multiple similar
domain names. When choosing a domain name you want to find a name
that is easy to spell, and as short as possible. It does not have
to match the name of your business but should be closely related.
Or you can try a word or phrase to get your attention. Not every
web site has it's own domain name. Some web sites use free hosting
from their ISP(internet service provider, think Road Runner, AOL,
Earthlink etc.). For personal web sites with low traffic this is
an acceptable solution.
If you are running a business web site or a web site promoting
your business you should get your own domain name. If you were a
customer which site would you feel more comfortable spending your
The first option is tiresome to type in, and impossible to remember.
Another benefit to having your own domain name is that you can
get email at this domain. Nearly every web hosting company offers
email support for domains they host. Some people run their business
email from their ISP email accounts. This is less professional and
potentially costly. It may force you to stay with a certain provider
when you want to leave and get better pricing elsewhere. If you
are running a business web site you need a domain name and email
at this domain. The nice thing is that it is cheap to do. Prices
range from $3.00 to $30.00 per year for each domain. If you are
new to this and want to register your own domain name I recommend
using www.networksolutions.com This is the company that ultimately
controls all the domain names. Stay away from most deep discount
services, if you have a problem good luck in getting any help.
Web Hosting: There
are many many web hosts out there. It is a highly competitive market.
There are many scams and many good companies that makes it hard
to decide where to go. Customer support and reliability are the
most important things to decide. The good news is that if you control
your domain name you can change web hosting companies as often as
you wish with a minimal of fuss. The following services should be
included in ANY web hosting package. If any of the following features
are not included even in their base service, then find another host.
- FTP access
- Email support for your domain
- Telephone number to a real person
- Email (test them on their response time in answering some pre-sales
questions. If it takes them a week to answer, imagine how long
it will take to fix a problem)
If your web site needs certain technologies like PHP or ASP or
MySQL etc. please make sure your host supports them before signing
up. The cost of web hosting is based on many factors. Such as the
size of your site, how much traffic it produces, services offered,
local conditions etc. You can get web hosting from as little as
$10 per year to $1000's per month.
The other option is to use free web hosting. The disadvantage with
free hosting is that you cannot have your own domain name, and the
traffic and size is quite limited. Your site also frequently has
ads on it that you have no control over, possibly even a competitors
product. At a minimum it detracts from your sites look. Usually
it is so invasive as to make viewing the site a chore. Some people
use free web space from their ISP, which basically traps them into
using the same ISP. Even worse is if the ISP shuts down, usually
with minimal if any warning.
Web SIte: This is
the meat and potatoes of the whole thing. The site it self is comprised
of images, text and programs to present your business or product.
Please see the other tips for more specific information regarding
Our Services: Fluid Dragon Design offers turnkey solutions
for your web site. will take care of all these components for you
at a competitive price. We will take care of all the details for
you leaving you free to run your business. Our door is always open
to your questions and concerns about your web site. "Relax
we'll take care of everything"
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