How to Setup a Website

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Web design software
Learn about web design software for your business.

Getting Started

In this article, we’ll provide an overview of web design software and web hosting to help you understand how to create a website. In addition, we’ll provide a list of web design software products and web hosting companies.

Web-Based Design Tools

In addition, there are many web-based design tools and services that don’t require software to be downloaded or installed. A web-browser is used to access an online content management system to create and edit files. All files, images, databases, etc. that are associated with the site are stored online on the hosting server.

Some of the more popular brands include WordPress, Drupal and Blogger. Also, check out the various blogging and content management software options available. They make it easy to design, launch and maintain a site.

A number of web hosting providers have integrated site management tools that help you develop a site quickly. The benefit of this approach is the design program is usually included in the cost of the hosting package for free. Following are some of the more popular services:

  • Wix.com – Wix.com is a leading cloud-based development platform with millions of users worldwide. Wix makes it easy to create a beautiful, professional web presence.
  • Weebly – Weebly is a complete platform that allows anyone to start and grow an online business with templates, powerful eCommerce and integrated marketing.
  • SquareSpace – SquareSpace is a web-based content management system that makes it easy for anyone to setup their own personal or business site on the internet. It serves as an all-in-one service for registering a domain name, web hosting, creating your site and your online store.
  • Duda – Duda is a leading website builder for web professionals and agencies of all sizes. Duda enables you to build amazing, feature-rich websites that are perfectly suited to desktop, tablet and mobile devices.

Web-Based Content Management Systems and Blogging Platforms

A blog is short for “web log”. A blog is a website that allows an individual or group of individuals to share a running log of events and information related to a particular topic.  

It is also a regularly updated journal published on the web. Some websites sites are intended for a small audience; others vie for readership with national newspapers.Blogs can be very influential, personal, or both, and they reflect as many topics and opinions as there are people writing them.

In recent years, blogging has become a legitimate source of news and information on the web.  Many bloggers (people who write blogs) have turned their website into a full time profession. For more information on various blogging platforms, please visit the following websites (most are free):

Blogger – Website that makes setting up blogs easy and fun.  Owned by Google.

Drupal – Drupal is an open source content management publishing platform. Drupal makes authoring web content easy and it’s most important feature is its flexibility. And best of all, it’s free.

Joomla – Joomla is an award-winning content management system (CMS), which enables you to build Web sites and powerful online applications. Many aspects, including its ease-of-use and extensibility, have made Joomla the most popular Web site software available. Joomla is an open source solution that is freely available to everyone.

LiveJournal.com – LiveJournal is an online journaling community, where people from around the world share stories, discuss topics and keep in touch with friends. It’s a free service that you can use for meeting people and creating bonds through writing and sharing.

WordPress – WordPress is a blogging tool and website publishing platform. We recommend WordPress as the best choice for private investigators. It is easy to setup, easy to use and makes maintaining your website a breeze.

Also, Word comes with a number of great plugins to help you manage security, fix broken links, build your social media presence and review website analytics. It’s what we’ve been using to manage the content for einvestigator.com since 2012.

PC-Based Web Design Software

Web design software is used to create and edit of web pages, websites and web applications using HTML (Hypertext Markup Language), CSS (Cascading Style Sheets), and images. It can also be used to create HTML newsletters and other web-related content for use on website and email programs.

Web design software is in contrast with web development software, which includes tools that allow web server configuration, writing web applications and server security.  However, web design software is often used for website administration tasks.

To be competitive, it is critical that private investigation agencies have an online presence to provide information about their investigation business, the services offered, and the geographic area covered. There are a number of quality web design software packages on the market that can help you develop a quality website.

The following web design software programs may be useful tools in setting up a website for your private investigation business.

Web Design Software Products

Currently, the most popular website design software packages are:

  • Adobe Dreamweaver – The most popular design package, representing the industry standard in website creation and management. Anyone who is serious about designing a high quality site should investigate using Adobe Dreamwearer. However, it is consider to be much too advanced for most beginners.
  • Microsoft Expression – Microsoft’s answer to Adobe Dreamweaver. Formerly known as Microsoft Frontpage, this product merger ease of use with power design features. It is a solid product, but not as good as Dreamweaver.
  • SiteSpinner – SiteSpinner is easier to use than the packages listed above, but also not as powerful.
  • Microsoft SharePoint 2007, 2010, 2013 – SharePoint offers powerful content management and document management system. Great for business that need to have multiple users contribute content to a web-based interface. It is a great product if you need to collaborate with others on your team and manage documents.

Wikis

If you don’t want to invest the time to learn how to create a website using a CMS or computer software, you may want to consider using a Wiki. Wiki comes from a Hawaiian word that means “quick”.  A wiki is a website that can be edited by multiple visitors to produce a collaborative website. The most famous wiki website is Wikipedia, which is used by millions of people each day.

Wikis are a great way to collectively create documents, reference guides, investigation reports, etc.  Wikis are especially useful when users are geographically dispersed. Working on documents that are stored in the cloud reduces the amount of time spent emailing documents back and forth. For more information on wikis , visit the following websites:

  • Wikipedia.org – By far the most popular wiki, Wikipedia is written collaboratively by volunteers from all around the world. Since its creation in 2001, Wikipedia has grown rapidly into the largest reference Web site in the world.
  • Wikia – Wikia is a community destination supporting the creation and development of wiki communities on any topic. Wikia content is released under a free content license and operates on the Open Source MediaWiki software. Explore existing communities or start a new one. Every person can edit content on Wikia.
  • Wikispaces – Dedicated to building the world’s easiest to use wiki service by listening closely to the ever growing Wikispaces community.  Hosts millions of wikis for over five million people and have products designed for the smallest classroom and the world’s largest corporations and institutions.

Web Hosting

A web hosting service is a type of Internet company that allows individuals and businesses to establish a presence on the interent. Web hosting companies own and manage a group of servers, also known as a data center.  are companies that provide space on a server for use by their clients. The hosting companies then lease space on those servers for a fee.

Also, web hosting companies provide other services such as hosting for email, cloud, WordPress, WooCommerce and much more.

In addition to understanding how to setup a website, you’ll need to learn a little about web hosting. Following are different types of hosting services.

I recommend SiteGround for web hosting due to its simplicity, affordability and quality.

Free Web Hosting

Believe it or not, there are companies that provide completely free hosting plans. In most cases, the company will place ads on your website, which allow them to earn advertising revenue. If you are serious about establishing a quality website and a professional online presence, I highly recommend avoiding free services. The end result is that your company will look cheap and the ads may annoy visitors.

Shared Hosting

With a shared plan, your site will share space on a server. This means that there will be multiple websites using the servers resources. The shared option is very affordable, usually around $5.00 a month. This is a great option for new sites and those with limited traffic. However, if your website starts to grow and get more traffic, you will quickly outgrow this option.

Virtual Private Server (VPS)

A Virtual Private Server, also known as a Virtual Dedicated Server, divides a server’s resources into “virtual servers”. From the user’s perspective, they have their own server, but it is still hosted on the same server as other sites. These plans offer improved performance over the shared plans and are also more expensive.

Dedicated

With a dedicated plan, you’ll get your own individual, private server. You’ll have full control over the server, but you don’t own it. This option isn’t necessary for beginners or for most small companies. Managing your own server will require that you have the appropriate level of technical skills to configure, install and maintain everything. If you aren’t the technical type, and you don’t have a technical staff, I would avoid this option.

List of the Most Popular Web Hosting Providers

Following is a list of the most popular web hosting providers based on current surveys:

  • A2 Hosting
  • BlueHost
  • Cloudways
  • DreamHost
  • FlyWheel
  • GoDaddy
  • HostGator
  • Kinsta
  • Siteground
  • WPEngine

Selecting the right web hosting is an important, but difficult decision. If you are just starting out, any of the above companies should be able to meet your needs. As your business and your website grow, the list of suitable companies gets smaller. Based on the surveys and comparisons I’ve evaluated, Cloudways, Siteground and Kinsta are often at the top of everyone’s list.

Web Hosting

Questions and Comments

If you have any questions about how to create a website, using content management systems or setting up web hosting, please lease a message below. Learn how to promote your business and website on social media.

Also, see more Web Design Software products at Amazon.com.

Michael Kissiah is the owner of Brandy Lane Publishing, LLC, which owns and operates a small portfolio of websites, including eInvestigator.com. Michael created eInvestigator.com more than 20 years ago after working as a private investigator in the state of Florida. Since that time, he has become an expert at how to find information online and has written over 1000 articles on topics related to the investigation industry. In addition, he is the author of the "Private Investigator Licensing Handbook", available at Amazon.com.

1 COMMENT

  1. SEO is one of the best methods to generate targeted traffic to
    your website. The reason for this is that search engines like
    Google send bots to look at websites and they take into consideration how easy the website is to use and they also look at the content you have and this can affect your rankings.

    A poorly designed website would not attract the clientele.

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