What you need to know when building your first website

Building a Website

There are many ways to build a website. Here we’ll go over some pros and cons about what software can be used. Let’s shed some light on the differences and what’s best for you.

Basically there’s 3 camps

 

A Website Builder (WIX, Squarespace)

These sites are very easy to  use, and I often recommend them to someone who is just starting off, is conserving funds, and wants a place to direct people to that is clean, simple and easy to update. They are also hosted by their servers, and you pay a monthly fee to “rent” a website from them.

Between these two, I would recommend Squarespace as it’s much more flexible and faster than WIX. It also has nicer templates.

 

A Self-hosted Website (typically WordPress)

WordPress sites have much more flexibility both in terms of style, and functionality. WordPress allows full access to the code, so that everything on the site can be changed. However, in many cases you’ll need a web developer to do so.

WordPress does have a marketplace for pre-made themes so that you don’t need to hire a developer to implement. Beware, as the marketplace is unregulated and some theme creators can take advantage of this and inject malicious code into your site. 

When shopping for a premade theme, always go with a referred, trusted theme creator.

 

An eCommerce Website (Shopify)

Shopify allows you to either purchase one of their themes, or create your own from scratch. Shopify’s theme marketplace is strictly regulated, so you can trust the themes when purchased directly off the Shopify website. They also give you full control to edit the code of the theme and customize the look of it, should you want a more unique look.

Shopify is an excellent ecommerce company, but is not the ideal platform for blogging and selling services. It’s core engine is built for physical goods.

If you are selling physical products, Shopify is the gold standard. It’s easy to use, and has great support and security features. 

At the end of the day, for flexibility and growth, I always go with WordPress. There are plenty of people that use Squarespace, and are perfectly happy with it, but just be mindful because you may end up building yourself into a corner.

 

Ultimate, it depends what you’re trying to accomplish.

When in doubt, start small. Start with a builder.

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