Build your own website by Dijlistic

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									Build Your Own Website
(No programming or nerd skills required)

by Bruce Black
 Copyright 2008, Bruce Black All rights reserved.

This book may be given away and shared only if it is done without charge and without revision to any part of the text.


Hello and thanks for downloading my Guide to Building your Own Website. It is my hope that within these pages you will find everything you need to know and soon, have your own site up and running. People pay huge amounts of money to have websites built, if you want one for your small business a hobby or just to play with you can do it yourself. Just a few short years ago the only way you could have done it yourself was to learn the HTML programming language and write the pages yourself, and then know how to FTP so that you could transfer your files to your web host. I’m not even going to bother explaining HTML or FTP because even though they are still widely used today, you don’t need to know a thing about them to have a great looking, professional site. The site you downloaded this information from was built by me without using HTML programming. Go back now to and look around. I run a business providing web sites for small businesses and this is the site I use and direct potential clients to. It has demo pages of the most popular pages you can build but I have really just scratched the surface here. If you are going to build your own site you can learn to build whatever pages you need. I did it all without any web programming. Here is the secret, a few good web providers today have site builders that are template driven so anyone can build and maintain their own site. You just need to have content and know how to upload a picture from your hard drive. There is one page on my web page that required some HTML knowledge; the page called “Make a payment” has a Paypal button on the page so that my clients can pay me electronically if they want. Guess what I had to do to create the button? Just cut and paste, yes Paypal provides the HTML code based on a series of questions you answer then you cut and paste the code into your web page. It is really that simple. If even this sounds hard don’t worry I have included step by step instructions in one of the sections you will come to as you read this manual. 1

Side Bar. Paypal is part of e-bay but basically it is a service that allows you to take credit cards online without having an expensive merchant account. You can sign up for a free account

Still not convinced you can do this, one of the first steps I will guide you through will be to sign up with a web host provider, (as little as $4.95 per month) and build your own web page. This is where you will see just how easy it is. You can add pages, delete pages and practice all you want until you are happy with your site. I will show you screen shots and steps taken to get your site up but the whole process is really intuitive once you sign up and have access to your “Control Panel”. I’ll get into this more in the following pages but basically the control panel is where you will build your site, submit it to search engines, set up e-mail accounts, monitor statistics and a whole host of other things you may never need to do. My philosophy is to keep it simple, but in case you do want to explore some of the other options I will talk about affiliate marketing, pay-perclick advertising and even offer information on how you could start your own business offering web sites to businesses if you think that would be fun. Once you see how easy and fun it is you may get hooked on building web sites, so why not offer your service to others and get paid for your new hobby. But I’m beginning to digress, before we launch your business empire, let’s get your page built first.


The Provider…

The company I use was chosen after months of research on my part when I decided to start my business. They have the best prices, options, tech support (this is huge) and even a brand new data center in Columbus Ohio where your actual web page will reside on one of their state of the art servers. Click the link below to see their home page but don’t poke around too long before coming back to read more. At this point all of the information may overwhelm you a little. It certainly did me when I was first searching for web host. Click the “Hosting Plans” Link on the left and then look at the features of the expert plan, this is the plan you should start with.

Side Bar The link above is an affiliate link. If you like the information I provide here and sign up with IX I will get a small Commission. This is how I can offer this book for free. I will talk more about affiliate programs toward the end of the manual. Once you have a web site up and running it’s a natural way to recommend other products and supplement your income.

Whether you are only going to do one web site or many you can start with the expert plan for as little as $4.95 a month. I think you have to pay in advance for 24 months to get that price but if you do you don’t have to worry about monthly 3

fees. If you’re not comfortable with that you can just pay monthly for a slightly higher fee. I started with this plan and paid the two years; I have since upgraded to the Business Plus plan as my business has grown. The IX service is excellent and in the two years I have had websites through them I have never had downtime except for a limited scheduled downtime when they moved to their new data center. They kept me informed through the entire process by sending out status e-mails and then offered free pay-per-click advertising with Google as thanks when they were done with the move. I know they did this to all their customers but the e-mail came directly to me from the president of the company, a classy move I thought. When I was researching hosting companies I made sure I called and asked questions just to get a feel for how long it took or if I could get an actual person on the phone. IX was the best with short wait times and very helpful staff when it came to asking sales questions about the different plans or technical questions once I signed up. The best feature is that once you sign up and logon to your control panel there is an Icon for creating a Support ticket (see below), you can fill this out and they have always answered my questions within 24 hours. You can also chat in real time with technical experts to get your questions answered.


Let’s Get Started…

The first thing you need, even before signing up with IX Web hosting is to decide what you want your domain name to be, and to see if it is available. A domain name is an easy to remember name you see all the time, like or The actual website is always at an IP Address like but that would be hard for us humans to remember. So the geniuses who run the internet (not sure who they are) came up with the domain name idea so that when you type in the domain name servers on the internet worry about translating that to the IP address and taking you there. Anyway that was probably too much information so don’t worry about it. What you need to do is come up with a name for your site. You will also hear this referred to as a URL; again this is just the name. With IX hosting you will pay $20.00 per year for your domain name but don’t worry because you get a free one with the expert plan. When you sign up you will need to register your domain name, so you will need to think of what you want before hand. The system will check to see if the name you want is available at the time you register but if you want to get ideas before go to the link below. I wouldn’t register your domain through this site or you will just have to transfer it later which could be a pain. And remember yours is free with your IX plan. Just use it for research to see what is available. At this site you can type in any name you may want and it will let you know what is available for any of the .com .net .info .biz or any of the other 5

extensions. I recommend always trying to get a .com domain because they are still the most popular and easiest for people to remember. One trick I use is to add your state if you are doing a site for your business and want to reach people in your home state. My first clients business was a hardwood flooring company called Hardwood Connection; well was already being used so we went with This does two things, it allows you to get that .com name and it narrows people searching on the web. This is a local business so it does no good for someone searching for a hardwood flooring company in Virginia to find our site. We also use Utah in our keywords that search engines look for to also narrow the search. More about this in the “Submitting your site to search engines” section. The competition for good .com names is getting harder all the time. Try to come up with a URL that describes your business, like You can tell right off what this business is about. You can also use hyphens so think about that as well. In our Joes bar example above look how much easier it is to read If your site name reflects your business its just that much easier to people to figure out what your site is all about before they even see it. My site is an awful example of this; you can’t tell what I do by looking at this name. But, I had ulterior motives I taught the martial arts for years and used to tell my students “even though you are learning to be a warrior you have to have the wisdom of a priest so that you know how and when to use your skills”. My first web site, (this site no longer exists) was a site I did to offer things I had written about the martial arts. I then started making some martial arts meditations and sold them at this site still runs today and I have branched out into other meditations as well such as, inner peace, sleep aids, stop smoking and others. My long winded point is this, if you are attempting to create a brand or have something that has meaning to you its OK to deviate from the rule above. Remember it’s your site and unless you are trying to make a full time income from it its OK to do something different. OK so hopefully I have given you enough info to feel confident about building your own site, you can go back and click the IX link and sign up or keep reading if you still need more information. Everything after this point will assume you have your IX account, your domain name registered and access to the control panel. Since I’m already a customer I can’t really take you through that step by step but it is a pretty simple set up and you can always call IX tech or sales support if you have questions.


Logging onto your Control Panel…

To get to your control panel, logon to your IX account, scroll down to your hosting product and click the blue “Manage” button. The picture below is a partial screen shot of the control panel, for now just pay attention to the first icon in the fourth row down. This is SiteStudio and this is where you will actually build your web pages.


Additional resources for help…

If you want to know all about every icon on the control panel and much more you can download the “IX Web Hosting, Hosting manual” by logging into your account and clicking on the “24/7 Help Center” link at the left side of the screen. This takes you to the screen below where you can download the PDF version of the manual.

You can also take video tutorials here, but again I’m going to guide you through setting up your web page with the site builder so you can do it pretty fast. You will probably come back to the manual or tutorials once your page is up and you want to add functionality.


Selecting layout and colors…

Once in the control panel click on the SiteStudio icon, You will come to a screen that shows the domain name you registered when you signed up. Click the Launch Button, and the Site Builder software will start in a new window. You will be asked if you are building a business or personal site, the choice you make here will determine what templates you will have to work with, so make the appropriate selection.


Then the screen that lets you select the layout and color scheme will come up.

Scroll through the options and the colors until you find one you like or that seems to suit your business. You have to select the layout, and then click a color scheme to see what it will look like in the preview window. Always keep the “apply color scheme to all pages on your website” box checked or you could end up with messy results, you want every page on your site to have the same look and feel. Don’t worry too much about getting the perfect layout and color right now, you can always come back after your page is built and change to another style if you want. Once you do the change is applied to your whole site automatically. It’s pretty slick. Click next once you have made your choice. Next fill in the information about your business.


This information will automatically populate certain pages you will build such as a “Contact us” page. Also put in whatever e-mail address you want inquiries from your web page to go to. We will actually create this e-mail address later. You should also think about any keywords your visitors might type into a search engine to find your product, service or information. Click next when done.


Building the welcome page…(also known as the home page)

You will then be taken to the heart of the site builder where you will add all your pages so get familiar with this screen. The first page you will want to add is a welcome page.

This will be your home page where you list your business name, what services you provide and the benefits of using your business. Look at other web sites that are similar to what you do and try to offer the same type of information. Be careful you do not copy other people’s information. Remember the person searching doesn’t really care about you at this point; they are looking for information or the answer to a problem. So, be sure to address how your business can do that.


If you don’t want the word Welcome to show on your page just delete it from the page title box. You can type your information into the Page text box but it will be pretty boring. It is better to click the “Launch full screen rich editor” link. Here you will see that it looks a lot like a word processor. You can change fonts, add bold, italics and change font colors. Use centering and even add pictures.

This shows some simple text added then centered. All the tools are at the top of the screen, and when you hover your mouse pointer over each one it explains what it does. You can also click the question mark in the upper right hand corner (not shown in the picture below) to get online help. To see how your page will look when done, click the save and exit icon, then the view tab. See below:


To go back and edit just click the edit tab, (I’ll get into the settings tab later). Now I’ll walk you through adding a picture. You can upload your own or use some of the many provided by IX. Once back in the edit screen click “Launch full screen rich editor” and then put your mouse pointer where you want the picture to go. Click on the Image options icon one below. you will then get a pop up window like the


It defaults to the upload tab; here you would click the browse button then browse to the directory on your hard drive where your image is. Once you find it, click the save button then the image will upload to the “Your gallery” tab. It will stay there for future use. I will walk you through using one of the images that comes with IX. Click the “our gallery” tab. Then select one of the folders, for this example I selected the “other” folder and the screen below comes up:

I’m going to select the new7_anim.gif because it’s a cool animated picture, you won’t see it here but it will blink on the web page. Just click it with your mouse to select it.


You can do other things with the box above like make the picture a hyperlink to another web page, or change how it aligns with text but for now just click insert and the picture will show up in your editor. Now when you click “save and exit” then the View tab you see the picture has been added as below.

So that is how you build your home page, now it is just a matter of adding other pages. Here is where it gets fun because you can really get creative if you want to. Remember to always check your spelling because nothing turns visitors off like misspelled words. There is no spell checker in the editor so I have actually built some pages in MS word, spell checked them and then copied them into the editor. It seems to work fine. I’ll go over a couple of more things on the site builder before I get into the e-mail section.

The screen crop above is from the site studio main screen, I’ll spend a few moments here to describe what each button means.


Publish: this takes your site as it is at the time you click this button and publishes it to the web for all to see. You will want to click this button before exiting anytime you make changes. A new web browser window will pop up and show your newly published pages. Logout: this simply takes you back to your control panel main screen. Make sure you click publish before you log out if you want your changes on the internet. If you click logout without clicking publish simply log back in to site studio and verify your changes are still there, the system seems to save as you go, then click publish to post it to the internet. Add a Page: this is where you add additional pages to your web site, each time you add a page a new tab will be created on your home page that is a link to the new page. Clicking the help button in the upper right hand corner will bring up a new window that explains every type of page you can add. Most like your home page, you just fill in the information and the system builds the page for you. Site Map: this will bring up a dialog box with all your pages listed, here you can quickly jump to a page, edit the content, edit the settings, or even delete the page. Order pages: This allows you to change the order of your pages; this mostly affects the navigation tabs on your home page. Depending on what template you pick, your tabs may be along the left side (most common), along the right side or even along the top of the page. Try moving pages around and you will see what I mean. Site settings: see below these setting affect your web site globally (every page) so here is where you go if you want to choose a different template or colors.


You can also edit company info here, set special effects, start over and a variety of other things. Most are self explanatory so I’ll move on to one last important point.

The Settings tab…
Every page you create will have a view, edit and settings tab. We have talked about the view and edit but I haven’t yet covered the settings tab. Mostly because this is where you are most likely to cause yourself problems if you poke around too much. For example in this screen you can change font sizes for the templates, the problem is that if you change the text size for your navigation tabs and then later pick a different template, your navigation tab title may now be too big to fit in the space allowed. So you will have to go resize the text for every page to fit the new template. Don’t get me wrong there are some cool features and tools on this page just be sure you know what you are doing or try things one page at a time before changing all the pages. Clicking the help link on this page will bring up a new browser window that will explain each of the settings in detail. So that is it for building your site, experiment, be creative and have fun. Add pages you think are relevant and provide your visitors with lots of good content, that is what the search engines like.


Your new e-mail,

To me nothing screams unprofessional like an advertisement for a business that lists a phone number then an e-mail address like or even When you sign up with IX hosting they will provide e-mail for you that matches your domain name. I have to admit that their e-mail interface is not the best and it is not very good at filtering spam. But there is a solution, you can set up an e-mail forward so that you advertise or or even your name, like I use but I do not use the IX webhost e-mail interface. I have a Gmail account that I automatically forward all my e-mail to. Someone sends and e-mail from my contact page or from the mail page and it looks like it is going to but it is really forwarded to my Gmail account.

Side Bar Gmail is the free e-mail account offered by Google. To get your free account simply go to and click the mail link at the top of the page. Google also offers calendars and other free tools that can help you if you have a small business.


With my Google account I can have all my mail from all my web pages go to a single account. I can even reply as directly from my Google account so my visitors never know I’m using another e-mail address. In the section below I’m going to walk you through setting up the mail forward. Side Bar If your Cell phone can access the internet you can download Gmail for your phone so you can monitor your e-mail from wherever you happen to be. Just point your phones browser to and download the Gmail mobile application.

First select the e-mail icon from your control panel home screen

If you have more than one domain select it from the drop down menu then click go. The system already builds 2 e-mail addresses for you, postmaster and webmaster, you can ignore these. Click “add new mail resource” at the very bottom.


Select Mail forward from the drop down list then click next.

Fill in the new e-mail address you want to create (this should be the same address you put in the company profile on the web page, if not go back to SiteStudio and click site settings then click global settings), this is the local e-mail address. Fill in your e-mail address you want the mail forwarded to, this is the remote address. Add a comment if you want and click submit.

Notice you now have the new e-mail address added. One more thing, see the Catch all button above? Right now it is set to off; I would click that off button to turn it on. Catch all means that even if someone misspells the first part of your email address (the part before the @ sign) the catch all will still send it to your forwarding address. You can now test this feature by sending an e-mail to your new address and see if it does the forward, some e-mail programs like hotmail or even yahoo might mark this as spam and put it in your spam box. If this is the case find the e-mail and mark it as not spam, the rest should come into your inbox. That’s it, now you can advertise your new e-mail address that matches your new domain name. 21

Getting your site noticed with submit URL…

Now go back into your control panel and click on the Submit URL button

Select your domain from the drop down list then check all the boxes for all the search engines. Now scroll down to the bottom of the screen and click the Submit button. This will automatically submit your website to all the search engines listed. Below is more information on how to submit to some of the more popular engines manually. Find out if your site is already indexed Often, a search engine will have indexed your site and you won't even know it; therefore it's good practice to see where your site is indexed before you bother with anything else. Here's how to check: On MSN or Google Search: Type site:<your domain name here>.com in the search box. For example, if you wanted to see whether was 22

indexed on MSN Search, you would type and click Search. The MSN results would look like this:

On Yahoo! Web Search: Type domain:<your domain name here>.com in the search box. To see an example of how is indexed on Yahoo! Web Search, you would type in the search box and click Search. The Yahoo results would look like this:

Be sure you enter the information in the format shown above for each search engine. The important thing to note here is the number of results that each returns; these are shown in the red boxes above. If no results come back for your site, or you get a message saying no results were found, then your site isn't listed on that engine. So, how do we change that? You can get your site name out there in one simple step. Submit your site name to the search engines directly. The good news is that this part is easy; all you have to do is go to their submission pages and follow the instructions. Here are the direct links: MSN Search Yahoo! Search (log in is required, but it's free) 23 Google Search

You should only need to submit your site to each engine once. NOTE Getting added to an index can take anywhere from one day to a month or more; the time needed is pretty much all up to the search engines.


Web Stats and how to check them…

Once your site is up and running you will probably be curious as to how many people are seeing it. IX has two different web statistics products that track visits to your site. From your control panel home screen click the stats icon

You will see a screen with all your domains (if you have more than 1) listed and the two choices in programs see below:

I think that Modlogan is easier to understand so I use that one. Just click the little magnifying glass and a new window will open with your web page stats. You will get a little graph like the one below:


Below the graph are the actual numbers by month, you can also drill down into each month to get even more details. All the numbers can get confusing so mostly look at the yellow “visits” statistic, this is actual people seeing your site and you can tell how many per month and how many per day are hitting your site. How to get lots of traffic is beyond the scope of this book but if you have an existing company and you’re offering an information site about your company, make sure you get your web site address on all your current marketing materials, business cards, company vehicles etc. The search engines also like a lot of good content with a mixture of the keywords folks would use to search for your site. So the more good information you have and the more often it gets updated the higher you will rank with the search engines.


Pay per click advertising…

Pay per click advertising is offered by most of the popular search engines. For an example go to and type in a search, use “iPod batteries” if you can’t think of anything. (my iPod needs one so I guess it was on my mind;-). Anyway, see the ads that run down the right side of the screen? These are ads that people pay Google to put there; well actually they don’t pay unless someone clicks on them, hence the term pay per click. Basically you bid on a keyword or search term like “iPod batteries”, you may bid anywhere from a few cents and higher for the keyword. The more you bid the higher on the list your add shows up. You can set a daily limit to how much you are willing to spend so you can keep your advertising costs under control. Once again a full explanation of pay per click is beyond the scope of this book but I wanted to give you a quick oversight of how this program works since IX will give you free pay per click credits to some of the search engines, Google being one of them. You can read more about Google adwords (pay per click) program at the link below:


How to add a domain…

In case you like your new web site and want to do another one I’m including the instructions I use for adding domains, it’s a two step process and a little tricky so once I did it I copied it down so I wouldn’t have to figure it out the next time. Logon to your account and go to the bottom of the screen and select “Add A Domain Name” and go through the process to register the domain just like you did when you first signed up with IX except you are getting a domain not a hosting package. Depending on your hosting package the new domain could be free or it could be $20.00 per year. You should get an e-mail within a few minutes saying your domain is now ready. Then go to the control panel and select the domain icon, then click add new domain and put in domain name with .com or .net or whatever the extension is. E-mail will confirm web page registration Go to site builder in control panel and start building your new web site. It may take up to 72 hours for your site to appear on the web after you register it.


How to build a Paypal payment button…

This section assumes you already have a Paypal account and understand how it works. The payment or buy now button will allow you to receive payment by credit card for items you may want to sell from your web page. Go to and Logon to your account. You will come to the “My Account” screen below.

Click the “Merchant Services” Tab in dark blue at the top of the screen just under the logout link.


Under the Key Features section, click on the “Buy Now Buttons” link circled in yellow on the above screen shot. Note: over time Paypal may change the way the page looks but always look for the “Buy Now Buttons” link.

Fill in the item name or service. 30

Make up an item number or use an existing one. Put in the price or leave it blank for multi-purpose payments. (The customer can fill in the amount when they go through the payment process, this allows you to have one button for multiple services that cost different amounts, most flexible) Choose a buy now button or select a different one by clicking the “Choose a different button” link. Don’t make any other changes, scroll to the bottom of the page and click “Create Button Now”

The HTML code you will need is in the box, you cannot see all of it but you need all of it. Put your mouse pointer in the upper left hand side of the box and select all the text in the box. Make sure you start to the left at the top of <form and end at the bottom to the right of </form>. Once all the code is selected hold down the CTRL key on your keyboard and type the letter C, this copies the highlighted text into your computers memory. Then open site studio and go to the web page where you want the button, you do not have to open the full screen rich editor. Just scroll to the bottom of your HTML code in the page text box. Make sure you are at the very last character then hit enter to start a new line.


Paste the code you copied previously into the text box window by holding down the CTRL key while typing V; this transfers the code in to the box. You should now be able to click “launch full screen rich editor” and see your button at the bottom of the page. You can’t test it from here, so select save and exit. Then publish your webpage and test the button. It should take you to a Paypal screen with the information and price of your product. This is the screen folks will use to purchase your item.


Backup your site…

The Web Hosting manual I mentioned earlier has instructions for backing up your web pages to your own hard drive. I’m confident IX hosting keeps backups in case they ever have problems with their servers but it is a good idea to have copies on your computer too. The following instructions show how to grab your whole directory, zip it up, and download it to your computer. From your control panel home screen click the webshell3 icon. It’s right next to the Site Studio icon,

A new window will open; click the checkbox next to your domain name directory.

Click the archive button in the top level menu. An archive form like the one below shows to the right with the name of the zipped file.

Click create and be patient for a minute, in a moment or two you will be prompted with the familiar save as dialog box. Click save then browse to the directory 33

where you want to save the file and click save again. The file will download to your hard drive. You web site is now backed up. Oh, don’t do anything else in webshell, if you start moving files or deleting stuff you will severely mess up your website. Get in, back up and get out. The logout icon is the very first icon at the far left on the top toolbar.


Affiliate programs explained…

Being an affiliate is like being a sales person for another person or companies product. If you make a recommendation that results in a sale you get a percentage of the sale. Most companies that sell strictly on the web have an affiliate program; it’s a way they can expand their sales staff without having to hire outside help. It is truly a win/win situation. Once you have a web site up and running you will want to check out affiliate programs and products that compliment yours. As I said before it’s a great way to add to your income stream. You can Google “affiliate programs” to learn more, you can also sign up and be able to search hundreds of products at At the very end of this manual I will recommend a few products that are affiliate products so you can see how it’s done. I highly recommend that you only recommend products that you have personally tried and can write an honest review about, other wise you look like you are trying to make a quick buck and don’t really care about your visitors.


Now that you did your own web page you can do it for others…

Now that you have built your site and see how easy it is you can see how you could offer this service to others. You are a rare individual who took the time to learn something new and then did it yourself. Most business owners will not take the time to do it. They would rather have someone do it for them. If you think you would like to offer this service I sell a package that is similar in format to this book but offers much more. It not only gives you the complete business plan but all the resources you need to get your business up and running like suggested pricing, marketing tips, sales letters etc. Honestly you have already done the hardest part. Click the link below to see everything you get with the package, I think you will agree it’s a great deal to be able to start your own business for under $20.00. Thanks and I look forward to hearing about your success, you can reach me at Thanks.

(Keep going we’re not quite through yet ;-) 36

P. S. below are a couple of other products you may be interested in that will help your business ventures.
If you want to study the concept of affiliate marketing in more detail I highly recommend Rosalind Gardner’s Super Affiliate Handbook. She is widely known on the web and offers expert guidance! Topics Include Blogging, Market Research, Affiliate Programs, Web Design, Problem Avoidance And So Much More! Click here to learn more.

Some people (and I used to be one of them) have very limiting beliefs about their ability to make money on their own. If you feel you may be a victim of similar beliefs I recommend Amanda Goldstons Clear limiting beliefs program. Amanda’s product helps you to clear any limiting beliefs you may have that are stopping you from being more successful, happier and Healthier. I've included one of her customer’s testimonials below and provided the link to her sales page below that if you would like to investigate further. "Amanda’s Clear Limiting Beliefs Workbook is so easy to read and follow, it is like going on a journey to a destination where you know you will be alright when you get to the end of the journey. Indeed, combining the Clear Limiting Beliefs together with the Workbook was like going on a magical journey. After listening to the MP3 on going to bed, I found myself getting up the following morning totally refreshed, full of energy and raring to embrace whatever I chose to take on that day."


"Clear Limiting Beliefs Audio Relaxation and Workbook. Sleep like a baby, erase your fears and wake up feeling like you can take on the world."
Click the link to learn more!


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