I’m Michael Rainford, and I am a website developer who has built well over 300+ websites for clients all around the world. As a full time online entrepreneur, you could say I know the ins and outs of website development.
Everything from designing a professional HTML (Hypertext Markup Language) website, styling it with CSS (Cascading Style Sheets) and incorporating complex functionality with PHP; I’ve done it all. These days however, you’re most likely to find me creating websites using WordPress, a handy-dandy, quick and easy, content management system. It makes life so much easier.
So I’m pretty much here to share a lesson or two that will help you on your site creation journey. Whether you’re new to this exciting world or you’re a professional, I think there’s something here that will interest you.
Before we get Started…
Before I get any further let me just make a distinction between HTML, CSS and WordPress since it forms the foundation of the lessons on this website.
This is the language of the internet. Every site out there in the world is constructed using this and it’s the starting point for any newbie in the world looking to get his / her hands wet with coding.
This goes hand-in-hand with HTML language. It’s used to add color and style to your web pages and most importantly make them more presentable to people who are viewing your website.
Take everything you know about coding and throw it out the window. WordPress is what we call a Content Management System (CMS). It takes the hassle out of writing a bunch of mumbo jumbo code and allows beginners to easily create professional websites with ease.
If you’re searching for the quickest way to launch a professional website then this is the way to go. In fact, if I had known how easy it was to use WordPress I probably wouldn’t have wasted 4 years of my precious life in university.
Website from Scratch or WordPress?
So originally I created this website to help people new to website building with HTML and CSS. Learning them both has always and will always be my recommendation to anyone who is just starting out with coding and looking to learn the inner workings (back to basics) of website creation.
On the other hand, if you’re someone that couldn’t care less about how code works, have no desire to write it yourself or just want to learn how to quickly create and launch a site then I recommend using WordPress.
You can find content on each of these areas in the top navigational bar of this website.
Pre-Requisites for your Website
Whichever direction you choose, there are 2 things you’ll need before you can launch your site.
1. A Domain Name
The domain name is that address you choose for your website. It’s a unique name you register and own that site visitors pop into their address bar when they want to access your website.
The domain name of this website is new2html.com.
There are important things to consider before securing your own domain so be sure to Read This Domain Guide which will help you with your domain name selection.
2. A Web Hosting Account
The web host is the place you upload your website files so that they can be accessed (and viewed) online.
Selecting the right host can be a tricky bit of business. After all, there’s a lot to consider. There’s no worst feeling in the world than finding out that people can’t access your website because it’s down.
This is especially critical if you’re running a website store or other service based website where your income is solely dependent on making sales. Naturally any downtime can mean you’re losing out on money. Choose wisely.
Finding the Best Web Host Around
I’ve lost count on the number of web hosts I’ve used for myself and my clients. Some have been fantastic while others have been nothing but a total waste of money.
Then there are the ones that start out amazing then decline over the years. So I’m here to guide you from from my own personal experiences as I review the best web hosting companies out there today (in 2016).
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Keep in mind that every website is different though and as a result may a different set of requirements and needs. You’ll find reviews that will surely help you make the best decision in choosing the host that’s best for your business.
For a more in-depth look at things to consider in helping you choose the right host, Read The Hosting Guide.
Installing WordPress and Getting Launched
After securing your domain and hosting account, installing WordPress is pretty simple. Most hosts out there come with a one-click software that allows you to install it in as little as 3 minutes.
Once installed, you’re on your way to building a great site. It’s now just a matter of adding your pages, a theme and a few plugins to bring it to life.
If you were to take the traditional approach of coding using HTML and CSS, you’d probably have taken a good hour or two just to have the basic layout configured.
Whatever the site idea you have in mind there’s a theme out there for it. There are hundreds (dare I say even thousands) of them available to fit any niche you can think of.
What are Themes You Ask?
A theme is the look / feel / design of your website. These themes are professionally crafted by developers from all around the world who build them for WordPress and it’s users.
You can pretty much find one for any type of website idea you have in mind. Whether it is that you’re looking to build a site for your hardware store, a restaurant or a plain ol’ blog, you can find something professional that meets your needs.
While searching google for “Best WordPress Themes” is a great place to start, one of the sites I use primarily is Themeforest. They provide a wide variety with tons of different options to choose from. Even more important than a well-designed theme is the documentation it comes with and you’ll find that the ones on this site are very detailed.
Great, Now What are Plugins?
Glad you asked! A plugin adds feature-rich functionality to your website. From very simple features such as a contact form or slideshow to even more complex ones such as those built for e-commerce.
Thankfully programmers spend hours building these features so that you can just easily click, install and use them.
Ready to Start Your Journey? 100% Free Training
So you’re finally ready to take that plunge and get your business live and online. You’re ready to finally offer your products and services online. Yup, you’re ready to become a certified website developer offering your skills to people all around the world.
Whatever your reason…I’m happy you have decided to take that first step and explore the possibilities that exist out there for you. So let’s get your feet wet.
If you’re looking to learn how to create a website using the basics (what most schools teach you – i.e. HTML and CSS) then I recommend you check out my HTML and CSS tutorials below:
If you can’t be bothered with learning how to code a site from scratch OR you’re someone that’s looking to launch a professional site in about 2 hours or less, then Check Out My FREE 100% Hands On WordPress Tutorials.
If you’re looking for my suggestion, start with the above. As always, I’m here for all my visitors so if there is any point throughout my training where you need some clarification on something shoot me a message. I’m always ready to help.