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where to start? Help....

Posted by sue_in_nova_scotia (My Page) on
Sun, Apr 1, 07 at 9:06

Hello...I asked my local garden club if they had a website...they said "no maybe you would be interested..."..GULP..
I think I have a idea how it works but am not completely sure...I didn't give a answer but If its something I can do I will give it a try..
1/ find domain?...usually a fee (anypreferences?)
2/ create webpage
3/ upload webpage
Is this correct? I would like to have some links in and a way so that they could group email all the members...


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: where to start? Help....

You have to establish what the purpose of the website is before anything else.
Domain names are more expensive than ever, about $35 a year. These are optional and more and more low traffic sites are using sub domains such as ://mygardenclub.myhostingcompany.com

Hosting is another expense, runs about $100 a year. This too is optional. There are free hosting sites out there such as geocities.com that put advertising on the pages. This may be acceptable depending on the purpose of the site. Some people host their own websites on a spare computer if they have certain types of broadband access.

Creating a webpage is a bit more complicated to explain.

If you want to group mail members you have to collect their email addresses and you only need an email program for that. There are other free services such as yahoo groups that make mailing lists easy.


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RE: where to start? Help....

Domain names are certainly not $35 a year. You can get them for $10 a year at gkg.net (my favorite registrar; they don't have a lot of confusing fluff on their sign up pages, like godaddy.com does). I own about 15 domain names...I can't stop buying them ;)

Hosting will probably run you about $8-$12 a month, for a semi-decent host, as mentioned. There are free hosts, but you get what you "pay" for. Back in the day, I played around with free hosts, and it was just more trouble than it was worth. Better to just shell out a few bucks and get reliable hosting and no ads, in my opinion.

As stated, the actual creation of a webpage is complicated. You will need to know HTML. My favorite website to explain HTML to newbies is Lissa Explains, but if you're serious, you should probably pick up a book or two. There are also CMS's (content management systems) that can be installed on your webspace (by someone else with more know-how) that would allow you to have a website, without knowing any HTML. If you want more information on that, send me an email, and I can give you some examples and info (I've installed many, and written a few of my own). There are many free ones out there.

To collect email addresses, you're not going to be able to do that with plain old HTML. Nor will you be able to email directly from the website, either. You would have to have a script written in something other than HTML to collect, and do the emailing. So, you'd either have to find a website service, such as the suggested yahoo groups, or install a script on your site to collect/email the emails.


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RE: where to start? Help....

Gee....I guess it is not as simple as I originally thought...and I didn't know about the hosting fee's either...


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RE: where to start? Help....

You purchase a domaine name--you can go to a site to buy them and then use their search engine to see if the name is already registered, if not you can buy it. Do you want a .org or a .com--in other words, what is your club--is it a registered 501c3? If so then go with the .org because hosting sites can offer .org discounts.

Once you have the name you can begin building your website. I sugggest a drop and drag progam with cascading style sheets. This means that when you build your pages you can simply add your clipart and move it where you want on the page. You can put in text boxes and drag them where you want too. It's very easy. I use WebStudio but there are many cheaper programs which can do the same thing. Go to the software store and look at webpage programs...don't do this in haste and do look online at reviews of the programs to find one that fits your budget and needs. Truth be told you get what you pay for, the higher the program fee the more you can do with it.

Now, while you're building your website, you can start looking for a host. If you don't want advertizing on your site you need to go with a site that will cost a bit more than a free site. Free sites suck, IMHO, because they populate your pages with ads.

I pay a discounted fee because I have .orgs and I pay 6.95 a month for the first site and a reduced amount for the others with a multiples discount. I don't have ads--they don't belong on .orgs. Yucch. What I get for my money is a LOT of space, a LOT of email addresses (which I doubt I will ever use--but I could), but most importantly, I get webstats.

With webstats I can view my traffic live as well as get the numbers on visits, sites, entry pages, and everything else I could want. I can also do some editing of my pages from the site host because they save all my uploaded info in files that I can open with my chosen password--in there I can do some tweaking. Which is nice if I'm traveliing and I notice a text error or font size I want to change--I don't need to use my webprogam to upload the changes.

I pasted in the link for my host, they have really good info about what a webhost is and does. Look at the site and click around to see what's what...you will learn a lot about webhosts.

Having a site is more than the nuts and bolts of creating one...it's securing and renewing the url, it's making the site by using a template or making your own, then using graphics and text--and all that goes with it. Then there's finding a host, paying the yearly hosting fee (I have mine autobilled to my plastic), and then the hard part is RESPONSIBILITY.

As webmaster you will be responsible for that site--the updates, changes, deletions and you get all the crabbing that occurs if you use a "committee" to make decisions about the site. Keep in mind that committee mean control, and squabbling over control can be a huge problem to you emotionally.

Consider HARD if you want to take on all of the above, if so you're a saint. Try at every step of the way to eliminate any committee and keep it all under your control. That means no one covers your butt if there's a problem, it will all be on you, but if you're worth your salt that's not a problem.

Here is a link that might be useful: My host, Laughing Squid


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RE: where to start? Help....

rivkadr....
Network Solutions and Register.com are up to $35 a year. If you WHOIS the fortune 500 companies you will see they are 90% registered with Netsol and the other 10% with Register.
I had to really fight hard to get my domain names and involve lawyers, trademarks, lots of nasty letters not to mention the $$$ I had to pay some to release the domain. So I keep my primary .com with Netsol and the others with the same name for .net,.org and whatever else with godaddy because it's cheaper. Since there is no free lunch, I've discovered that godaddy makes up the difference by selling your contact information to companies that telemarket and send snail mail spam. So I no longer suggest using godaddy to save money unless you're going to use fake information and you really don't care if you lose the domain for one reason or another. And for that reason I don't trust any of the other registrars enough having gone through what I did to get my domains in the first place.

Godaddy does have one pretty nice reference and that would be wikipedia.


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RE: where to start? Help....

quirky, using network solutions may make sense for a business related or "Fortune 500" website. For your regular, simple little website that has nothing to do with trademarks, that is just something like "costamesagardenclub.com", there's absolutely no reason they can't use one of the smaller registrars and only pay $10. I've been purchasing domain names for nearly 10 years, and had absolutely no problems as far as losing a domain; so long as you're smart about the domain name you pick (i.e. don't pick something that is likely to be trademarked), the chances of your running into problems are slim to none if your just making a personal site.

Network Solutions has just as bad a reputation for shady practices as every other registrar out there -- it all depends on who you talk to, and what experiences they've had. For example, there was their questionable marketing practices (sending out letters to domain holders registered by other registrars, telling them that their domain was expiring, and that they just needed to fill out a form to renew it -- doing so transferred the domain over to Network Solutions). There's the fact that they don't release domains after they expire, too -- they're probably the worst as far as registrars as far as that goes -- I've seen domain names that have expired over a year ago that they won't release.

Godaddy sucks, for many reasons. That's why I suggested gkg.net. I've never gotten spam from them, or because of them.


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RE: where to start? Help....

I agree. Like I said, if you worry about losing the domain for one reason or another and don't want to get spammed... why take a chance.

I have been involved with web design since 1997 when I learned HTML in a college course and haven't stopped handcoding since. I was shocked when I saw the renewal bill for $35 for my primary domain and nearly soiled my trousers when I discovered that the days of getting cheap domains (For less than $8 a year) were gone. If this cloud does have a silver lining, it's that the cyber squatters are kept somewhat at bay. Myself included since I had quite a few domains at one point with plans to do something with them. I've also lost a couple valuable domains because of bad bookkeeping on them and not keeping up with the contact info changes.


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RE: where to start? Help....

This is an interesting thread but most of it is way beyond Sue in NS I suspect.

Sue you have the opportunity to create a web site with your internet provider (I can have up to 5 with Cogeco here in Niagara) totally free and with no advertising. The name is troublesome and long sadly but as noted above, free comes with burdens.

Check you internet provider's web site for details. Then you can start to set up a site, you do not need to disclose the address till you feel comfortable with it


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RE: where to start? Help....

I know there's long history of discussion by the lawn guys on lawnsite.com in the website forum way down the list.

Far less talk than on lawns, but the topic list goes page after page on a myriad of questions and concepts that different guys are using, all the way from Dreamweaver the pro program, to the simple stuff that anybody can get their hands on.


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