Create A Website

Website builders like Google Sites make setting up a web site so easy users can mistakenly assume all there is to the process is finding a template and adding content. Creating a website requires more. It requires planning or the website can be mismatched to its purpose and audience. The following guide will help you get started but not provide all of the answers. Each website is different and will have unique needs that must be addressed.



Using Google Sites For Your Website

Creating a website using Google Sites usually, but not always, begins by choosing a website template first and then adding the content. This is the most popular, easiest and widely known method though and it is the wrong one to build a website because there is the chance the content won't fit. This method is similar to choosing a house by the way it looks and trying to fit your furnishings and lifestyle afterward. The right method is to design your site to fit your site's needs and Google Sites can do this.



Building Your Website

The process is called "building" because that is what you are doing, one step at a time until you have a finished website. 

Each step must be done in this order to ensure that no steps are missed. If you are experienced enough, you can move around in your own order.

Tools

All you need to get started is a writing tool and paper but you can use a program, either now or later.

I find that putting my thoughts down on paper is quicker than using a program because I can write and/or draw faster and with more variety than when using a program, at least at this stage.

Website Building Process

The following steps will get you started. Note that there can be other sub-steps depending on your website.

  1. define your website
  2. structure your website
  3. design your website
  4. develop your website
  5. test your website
  6. publish your website

Define Your Website

Before you build anything, website or otherwise, you have to know a few basic pieces of information.

  • what is it supposed to do? inform? sell? engage?
  • what is the problem it is fixing?
  • who is the target user? gender? age? hobbies? needs?
  • what device are viewers using to access your site? mobile? which mobile device? desktop? 
  • who will maintain it?

Structure Your Website

  • what content do you have now? what content will you need?
  • create a sitemap
  • if necessary, create page content descriptions
  • create page wireframes

Design Your Website

  • Draw a template design
  • Get feedback
  • Refine it
  • Select a design

Develop Your Website

  • Create the website

Test Your Website

  • Test
  • Prioritize Problems
  • Fix Problems
  • Retest

Launch Your Website

  • If necessary, create a manual or style guide
  • Make site public, if not already
  • Maintain the site