Mariah Liszewski is a website developer and strategist who focuses on helping business owners make the most out of their websites.

 

Want to see some of her work for yourself?

 

THEN JUST TAKE A LOOK AROUND! Yup, my entire website is all thanks to Mariah, who actually did all the development on my website! When I was starting out with my website, I had SO MANY QUESTIONS and Mariah answered them all for me. That’s why I asked Mariah to talk to us about the very basics of getting your website up and running.

 

If you’re considering setting up your very own website for the first time or your current website isn’t really doing what you need, tune in! From how (and when) to snag your domain name, to figuring out which hosting platform is best for your individual business needs, to getting the right kind of traffic to your site, Mariah has your website questions covered.

 

 

“Google will be your best friend”

– Mariah Liszewski

 

So you want to set up a website? Here’s what you gotta do:

 

Set up your domain name

 

The VERY first thing you need to do is secure the name of your website. This is called your domain name (and if you’re not tech-savvy think of it like your home address). Head on over to a website such as GoDaddy or Namecheap, do a search to see if it’s available and then purchase it! WOHOO!

 

Tips:

  • Try to stick to a .com suffix, because that’s what people will usually type in automatically. If it’s not available, try adding relevant words like “studio” or “company” at the end.
  • No weird characters or numbers.
  • Make it easy to remember (this includes the use of easy/typical spelling)

 

Choose a platform

 

To choose the right platform for your business needs, you first need to know the answer to these questions:

  1. What do you want your website to do?
  2. How involved do you want to be in the process?
  3. What is your budget?

 

There are three main hosting platforms we will discuss today: WordPress, Squarspace and Shopify, but knowing which one is best for your business will come easier once you answer the above questions (and a few more Mariah mentioned in the video, so make sure to check it out!)

 

 

But here is a little cheat sheet:

 

WordPress:

  • Fully customizable and limitless options
  • Most complicated, but most powerful
  • Best option for blogging (it was actually created for blogs specifically)
  • Plugins available
  • Options available for online sales
  • Self-hosted – you have to purchase where your site “lives”. (Check out Siteground!)
  • No customer support
  • You are in charge of updates (monthly, at minimum)

Squarespace:

  • Simple and minimal
  • Less flexibility, capabilities, customization and functions
  • Templates
  • Beginner friendly
  • Great if you want to DIY
  • Options available for blogging and online sales
  • Host platform
  • Customer support teams
  • Automatic updates

Shopify:

  • Best option for online stores (built with sales in mind)
  • Templates
  • Options available for blogging
  • Host platform
  • Apps available
  • Customer support teams
  • Automatic updates

 

If you’re not sure what you want, take a look at the websites of others in your industry! Take notes of what kind of pages they include, what information they share, the different functions they have…This will help you figure out what you like/don’t like.

 

KEEP IN MIND, that you can always change platforms down the line. I started out with Squarespace and once my business outgrew it, I headed over to WordPress! Do what works for you NOW!

 

And in case there’s something we didn’t answer here, Mariah has some great advice…

 

“Ask Google” – Mariah Leszewski