how to start a website

So, you've been thinking about starting a website. But where do you begin? There are so many possibilities, it can be challenging (and overwhelming!) to wade through all of the information out there!

I'd love to share my top 5 website and blog builders with you!

You can check out the pros and cons of each one, and see what might be the best fit for you! 

5. word press 

Word Press is one of the most popular, if not the most popular website and blog builder! Many people choose Word Press when they venture out to start a website. There is a bit of a learning curve when it comes to working with Word Press.
Like any good website or blog builder, Word Press has tons of web templates to choose from, some of them are free, and others can be purchased. 
A good question to ask yourself when considering using Word Press is "Am I doing this to build and promote my business or ministry? Or is this going to be more of a hobby, and something I do in my free time? Do I want to spend money and invest in it, or do I want to build as much as I can for free?" 
When I first hopped into the web-building world, I played around with Word Press. Here are a few things that I like about it: 

  • A lot of cute designs and templates to choose from.

  • There are several great "plugins" with cool features such as having a comments section, simple ways to add polls, and other fun ways to connect with your email subscribers. 

  • Everyone has heard of Word Press, which means that if you run into puzzling questions while setting up or editing your site, help is never hard to find! There are many helpful forums and people on the internet who can help you, with a simple Google search.

I didn't end up choosing Word Press for my website. Why? Here are a few of the reasons:

  • This may sound silly, but I didn't want to use Word Press because so many people are using it.
    As I considered and really thought about why I wanted to start a website, I really wanted mine to stand out. I like to be unique, and I wasn't down with the idea of having the same template as hundreds of other people on the internet. I wanted to find something that would be a  bit more "one-of-a-kind". 

  • I found it to be a bit confusing, and not very user friendly. I like to think that I'm pretty tech savvy, but while creating my website on Word Press, I was spending much more time than I wanted to, solving little puzzles and problems. Even though the set-up process was quick and easy, I wanted the additional features to be something I could figure out without so much confusion.

4. blogger

Blogger is Google's version of a website and blog builder. Here are the pro's and cons! 

Thumbs up for the:

  • Adorable backgrounds and templates! I am a design girl. I love super cute, girly things, and Blogger had a lot of designs that I loved. 

  • So super simple. Like seriously. A monkey could log in, start a website, and do everything. 

Thumbs down for the: 

  • Lack of creative control. For my personality, I found it to be too simple. I wanted something a bit more elaborate, something I could design and have a little bit more fun with. 

3. tumblr

Tumblr is a fun option, depending on what your goals are when you set out to start a website or blog.  It's a socially "hip" place where young people spend a lot of time browsing and "Re-Blogging" (which is basically like Re-Tweeting, except your whole post gets shared with all of their friends, rather than just 365 characters.) With Tumblr you can share your thoughts, images, and opinions about anything under the sun; without being tied down to a traditional blog format. You can get creative, build an audience and a fan-following. Tumblr offers a unique audience of readers. Something like this is ideal for people who don't want to write a novel-sized post, but still enjoy sharing tidbits and snapshots of their heart with the world.  

2. wix

Wix is a website builder that makes me literally squeal. When I first discovered all of their free templates, I felt like a little girl browsing through a candy shop. The templates popped with so much color, and I couldn't stop obsessing over all their unique features. I was an insta-fan. I will unashamedly admit that I have spent hours playing around with their web-builder, and even though I don't have a website with them currently, I adore everything about them! It makes me think that I want to start a website, like all the time!

Major thumbs up for the:

  • Adorable templates! Such a unique variety. I can't say enough good things about them, you'll have to just scroll through the collection and see for yourself. Some of them are available for purchase, but the majority are free. 

  • Super easy, drag and drop web-builder. I love that Wix gives you a nice, professional-looking template, but then you can do whatever you want with it. You can change it and design something totally brand new, or you can keep it as is, and just go with the Simple Sally method! You don't need to be "technologically gifted" to set up your website, which is a beautiful, beautiful thing for people like us! 

  • The creative control. I pretty much already said this, but it deserves to be repeated. The creative liberties that you can take with Wix, are so very refreshing. While most template-based web builders require that you stick to the original format, you can explore and change all sorts of things within your template. 

  • The free photo gallery that Wix users have access to is SO valuable. They say that pictures are worth a thousand words, and having access to these images is gold. In the web world, you will quickly discover that finding free, quality images for your website, isn't an easy thing to do. So having access to tons of images is an amazing, and surprisingly sweet feature. Images really make your website pop, so this feature in and of itself, is why Wix is so high on my list! 

    Check out Wix Here!

1. sbi site build it
{the BEAUTIFUL site builder of yours truly.}

And finally at number one, we have SBI Site Build It, which is the site builder that I use for Crown of Beauty Magazine. I feel so blessed that I found SBI, because it isn't a name heard very often. Although it is getting more popular as time goes on and people discover all the amazing features, it still seems like a hidden diamond in the rough. 

Reasons I love...

  • Solo Build It has a really unique feature called the Key Word Brain Stormer which helps you choose a popular Key Word, depending on what the overall theme of your website is. Their "Analyze It" tool helps you write an article that has just the right amount of times your key-word is mentioned, so that your page will rank high in search engines, but also make sure it's something your readers will love. These features are very unique, and have driven tons of traffic to my website. Having this little Keyword Robot as your special helper, gives you an edge on all the other people out there trying to build traffic. My web traffic exploded only several days after launching my site, simply because I used their Key Word "Analyze It" tool! Being able to focus in on a key-word in your specific niche, for every page that you post, will help you earn money on your website much more quickly.

  • Auto responder for when your fans subscribe to your email newsletter? Check.

  • Mail-Out Manager to collect email addresses and keep up with all of your followers? Check.

  • Drag and drop, easy templates, simple
    customization, and so simple anyone could do it? Check.

  • If earning income from your website is one of your goals, Solo Build It has set up an amazing step-by-step format to do just that. With their online tutorial, they take you through step-by-step, and teach you everything you need to know; from setting up a web-domain, writing amazing key-word pages, connecting with your audience, multiplying web traffic, monetizing your website, and taking your biz to the next level.

    Check out Site Central and learn how to grow your idea into a thriving income!

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