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It's not exactly a business website, it's more of a personal one, but both kinds are put together almost exactly the same. A good friend recommended www.yola.com and after much research, I found it to have high reviews as they are very dependable, friendly, and compatible with almost any sort of site you'd want to make. Many business sites are posted through them and Yola has loads of free templates with a variety of different themes.
You can pay for an inexpensive monthly plan that includes even more templates and they will even set up your site for you, I think, but I couldn't afford to do it that way and did it all myself on the free version. I'm very appreciative that they supply so many great free tools and give free space for individuals as well as businesses to have websites, and they don't even run any intrusive advertising banners across them, it's great! They only put their own name/ad very discretely at the bottom of the page, nothing more.
Yes, you will have a website address at first that includes the Yola name as well as your website's name, but you can buy a website name of your very own for as little as $10 a year from various sources (I bought mine through Google as a reseller) and aim it to your free Yola website, so when people type the name of your purchased website name, it'll take them directly to your website and that's the name that'll show in their address line.
It's much easier and safer to buy your website domain name through Yola for $11.95 a year, and let them aim it to your website automatically, but if you're patient you can figure out how to do it yourself through other resellers if you'd rather. When I bought mine, I had no idea what I was doing and bought my domain name someplace else, which worked out fine, I was just lucky. Bu if I had it to do over, I'd go with Yola to buy my domain name probably. For only $11.95 a year to keep the name and a free website, what a deal! I really trust them myself.
There's a slight learning curve, but they've upgraded lots of features in the year since I started a website there and it's much more intuitive now. You can drag and drop areas to put your photos and text, etc. If you have a problem, just look on their "Get Help" tab and there's tutorials and a community of people who will explain things. Sometimes I just Google my question and find the answer right away. Almost everything, you can figure out for yourself.
My plans for the coming year are to look at their new templates and re-do my site, but at the time I was in a hurry to get the information up that I didn't fine tune it a lot. You can have a simple website up in minutes, then go back and add to it when you have time. They even have blogging features, if you're so inclined. Don't be afraid to get started, what's the worst that can happen? If you get it done and don't like it, just delete it, and start over. Everything in life is a learning experience. Once you've taken the time to make your own website once, you'll find it to be very easy, and a lot of fun!
By Mary L. from Mtn. Pine, AR
There are free templates out there. I created websites for people using the Weebly.com templates. It is very very basic, no html. The free websites will have @-----/weebly.com for your domain name. For a little extra, you can get your own domain name.
This may be a lot more lame than what you are looking for. But I have also encountered other Weebly websites that were nicely done and had some impact.
By Mary from Kensington, Maryland
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What is the most frugal way to put together a web site? If I do a search, the task can be daunting and I'm not sure who to trust. Specifically, I need to either learn how to put one together myself, or pay a company that is trustworthy and economically feasible.
By Patti from Ewing, NJ
Check out www.freewebs.com. I did one there a couple of years ago and it is really simple, mostly point and click. Learning how to do one is hugely different, but for someone wanting a decent one you can check out the one I did if you want: www.freewebs.com/carpidiemgoats. They say you can also just type in the www.carpidiemgoats.com. I haven't tried it, but then I am kind of lazy sometimes.
My friend and I create websites, and I have bartered a web site with the gal that does my hair for cuts, colors and waxes. Another one of my friends wants me to create one for his photography business. I still have to figure out what we will barter.
Creating a simple website isn't too difficult if you have MS Frontpage. It would be within your MS Office programs. I've encountered a few companies that use Frontpage. I, on the other hand, determined to write my own, so I searched out "free HTML lessons" using my favorite search engine. It isn't elementary, but it's doable. Please remember blind folk use the web too (I'm one of them,) so if you include pictures, please name them within the HTML framework. I hate getting an incomprehensible string of code instead of "Our CEO John Johnson."
Since my own experience was 10+ years ago, I don't know anymore who hosts free. You might want to do a search for "free website hosting" and see what looks good to you. One I'd advise against is godaddy.com - it doesn't seem very good.
There are a number of inexpensive webhosting companies (many provide hosting for under $5.00 a month) that provide easy to use software to build your website when you subscribe to their service. By going this route you don't have to spend time learning HTML or other complicated software. Plus, you'll have control of the content of your website without intrusive advertising that normally comes with "free websites".
You'll be able to get your website up and running quickly and avoid the frustration of spending weeks or months learning to build a website. A nice website to compare different webhosting companies is www.mytopfivehosting.com. It also provides some definitions to help you decide what you are looking for. I hope this helps, good luck!