BUILD A WEBSITE from GROUND ZERO
Today we’re talking web. Specifically, what you need to know to build a website from scratch. When you’re just starting out it can seem like wizardry. In a lot of ways, it is. If you’re a beginner web developer, web designer, aspiring Creative Director, or just a really smart Startup business owner, this is a good place to start. Even if you don’t want to build a website, it’s a good idea to know the governing systems running your online store in case one of them goes Jedi Rogue on you.
Think of a house when you build a website
A lot of the languages listed below may just sound like gibberish or something you’re remembering from a college class you barely made it out of. But when you associate the responsibilities for each language or property, things begin to come together.
HTML is essentially the structure, the backbones of the house.
CSS is like your interior designer coming in and making your house look beautiful.
PHP is like the logic of your house (or website). It’s the plumbing, electricity, etc. You could technically run your house without plumbing or electricity, but in the long run, it will make your life a whole lot easier.
Most content management systems are run off of PHP. Making adding and updating content much easier .
SQL is where everything is stored. Without “Storage” your house would be empty. You need a place to keep your “guests” information so they don’t have to start from scratch every to stop in.
Though these are the core languages that many modern websites are run on today, you can take it a step further.
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Build a website with advanced server capabilities
The above make up your house but not your property. You need land and an address for your “House” to live on. You also need security and there are systems built and tested by millions that help give a jump start to any project.
Hosting/Servers (Your land) – I personally use Digital Ocean for their flexibility, scalability, and ease of use. Pricing as low as $5/mo.
LAMP Which stands for Linux, Apache, MySQL, PHP.
When your server is setup, you can typically choose a predefined setup that will save you hundreds of hours up front. Most of the web runs on Linux. My server runs Linux CENTOS 7.4. These are essentially the foundation / resources your house will pull from.
Domain (Your address) – Instead of seeing some random number for your address, hosting companies mask this number with words of your choosing. The typical Godaddy is good, but not the introductory prices for the first year typically go up after second year.
Cpanel or Plesk Not a requirement but definitely a recommendation. Many of the laborious back end tasks you’ll have to do as your website scales are handled easily with Admin backends like Cpanel. Create multiple websites on separate IPs? Add on domains? htaccess management, PHP settings? All of this is handled with these backend systems. You can of course jump in to the Command line and code what you need. Sometimes you will as you become more confident.
Build a Website with Content Management & Customization
WordPress My absolute favorite!!! WordPress is extremely easy to setup and makes managing content, posts, pages and media extremely easy. There are others out there like Drupal or Joomla, but trust me, WordPress is for winners.
Woocommerce Any shopping capabilities are handled with easy by Woocommerce. Carts, products, checkout, shipping etc. Built specifically or WordPress – of course I love it.
SSL Certificates are extremely important if you’re selling anything on your website. They can be a bitch to setup if you don’t have a backend control panel like Cpanel and you can even get them for FREE. (Although you have to keep up with it every 3 or 4 months if you go that route).
Page Builder The flagship for drag and drop customization. Beaver Builder (though I hate the name) surpasses any page builder I’ve used. Coming from a background of having to hard code everything. I can do what I used to 20 times over in the same amount of time with Beaver Builder.
Should I build a website from scratch?
Definitely for those interested in the anatomy of websites and would love to profit off of your creations one day. It won’t be an easy process. But it’s worth its weight in pixels.
- Start learning the basics of HTML & CSS
- Then learn how to build a website in WordPress with Page Builder
- Next learn PHP and try building your own theme or plugin in WordPress
Feeling advanced? I’d say:
- Setup a server from scratch using Command Line on Digital Ocean
- Configuring the server with Cpanel or Plesk
- Mapping domains, hosting and email all together on your server
- Build a WordPress Multisite
- Add SSL Certificates to your shop
Here are more places to help you continue your adventure:
- A Subscription to Team Treehouse
- Smashing Magazine
- And any of the other links I’ve put in this article.
If on the other hand, you just need an online business. Then you’re in the right place. I can build you an amazing custom website where you can edit everything and have video training,. Take look at Biz Pro Hope this helps!