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Posts Tagged ‘website development’

to return to ”Website Development With WordPress: Adding WordPress Plugins You Will Need” please click here
or to return to the tutorial index please click here.

A Sitemap is an XML file that lists the URLs for a site and allows a webmaster to inform search engines about URLs (yes, the www.yoursite.com/whatever) on your website that are available for crawling. It allows webmasters to include additional information about each URL: when it was last updated, how often it changes, and how important it is in relation to other URLs in the site. This allows search engines to crawl the site more intelligently. Sitemaps are a URL inclusion protocol and complement robots.txt, a URL exclusion protocol.

It is also important to understand that Sitemaps supplement and do not replace the existing crawl-based mechanisms that search engines already use to discover URLs. Also, using this protocol does not guarantee that web pages will be included in search indexes, nor does it influence the way that pages are ranked in search results.

But to my experience, this is a must. This is the fastest way to notify google about your website and changes and should seriously aid in your SEO process. To elaborate, please take a look at our article about Making WordPress Search Engine Friendly.

Sitemaps are particularly beneficial on websites where:

Some areas of the website are not available through the browsable interface, or webmasters use rich Ajax, Silverlight, or Flash content that is not normally processed by search engines. The webmaster can generate a Sitemap containing all accessible URLs on the site and submit it to search engines. Since Google, MSN, Yahoo, and Ask use the same protocol now, having a Sitemap would let the biggest search engines have the updated pages information.

So, let’s work on a way on how to automatize this process, which is a very simple task in wordpress.

Google Webmaster Tools

Google Webmaster Tools

Although this is not mandatory, as we wan’t to be shure our sitemap es being posted, we will need a google webmaster account. The url for registration is http://www.google.com/webmasters/. Once your account is created, you should create a record for the site you wan’t to work with, and via the google authentication methods, confirm the site ownership. I personally recommned the script placing in your website root modality, as I have done this process various times and this choice has proved to be the one that never fails.Now, we should install our XML sitemap automation.

For this, we will include another plugin in our installation, a plugin called Google XML Sitemaps.

XML Sitemap Generator

XML Sitemap Generator

This plugin will generate a sitemaps.org compatible sitemap of your WordPress blog which is supported by Ask.com, Google, MSN Search and YAHOO. Please download from here (http://wordpress.org/extend/plugins/google-sitemap-generator/), decompress and install this plugin by uploading the resulting forlder into the ftp://yourwebsite.com/wp-content/plugins folder.

Once this process is complete, you should activate the plugin. In the plugins section of your wordpress admin panel, please activate this plugin. All settings are pretty self explanatory and you should not have to meddle with them much, but in the configuration page (the link in the plugin detail in the plugins section) for this plugin you should add your google account info for google notifications to be done automatically.

Some features about this plugin :

  • Post Priority (this is especially useful, even more so if you have Popularity Contest enabled)
  • Auto-detects the sitemap location
  • Options to include or exclude specific content types (example, posts, categories, archives, tag pages, etc)
  • Easy to change the frequency for robots to re-crawl pages (example, Daily, Monthly, Yearly, etc)
  • Easy to change the priority level for each content type
  • And many more.

Finally, we should test our reporting of news to the google services. To do this there are two procedures. Manually, forcing the update, and automaitcally, allowing the plugin to perform the update. Automatically, the plugin will perform the update anytime your wordpress website is updated (you can configure which parts of the website to report – tags, posts, comments, etc.).

To revise your results, please log into the webmaster tools area in google, click your website and in the left panel click on Site Information>Sitemaps. There you should see the google sitemaps and the amount of indexed urls you have.

to continue to ”Website Development With WordPress: Adding your first Entry” please click here.

to return to ”Website Development With WordPress: Making WordPress Search Engine Friendly” please click here
or to return to the tutorial index please click here.

Plugins are small scripts that can extend WordPress to do almost anything you can imagine. There is a directory in the wordpress.org (http://wordpress.org/extend/plugins/) website where you can take a look and find literlly thousands of them, whom can improve your worpdress experiencie in almost endelss ways.

In this small section I will discuss only two of them I consider ver important for you to implement. Further options are also considered, simply google “wordpress plugins” and you´ll find thousands of people recommending diferent solutions for your wordpress website. I’ve tried these and recommend them.

First of all, Backup !!!

Yes, you need a copy of your content and don’t want any problems with damaged or lost information. Although your host may have a backup implementation, it is never wrong to simply secure a copy of your information.  This is a simple plugin to help you automate the process of backuping your wordpress database to ensure there is no content loss.
Please download, extract wp-db-backup.php and upload it into /wp-content/plugins/ and activate it under the Plugins menu. Then Click the Manage menu in your WordPress admin area. Click the Backup sub-menu. When activated, this plugin will look for other tables in the same database (this can solve a general backup of the website). You may elect to include other tables in the backup.

Now simply select how you’d like the backup to be delivered:

  • Save to server : this will create a file in /wp-content/backup-*/ for you to retreive later
  • Download to your computer : this will send the backup file to your browser to be downloaded
  • Email : this will email the backup file to the address you specify

Click “Backup!” and your database backup will be delivered to you.

When having the database backup emailed or sent to your browser for immediate download, the backup file will be deleted from the server when the transfer is finished.
Only if you select delivery method “Save to server” will the backup file remain on your server.

Additionally, our website will need a contact form. This is very easy to implement.
Download WordPress-Ready Contact Form v.2.0WP. This plugin has a form overview page to allow you to confirm the plugin’s general configuration, a set of extensive security features to countermeassure spammers and forgers and a form set-up error management to help ensure you set-up critical parts correctly. You can also customize the style of your forms to match your template (see our “Installing your chosen design theme” section for this set of articles).
WordPress-Ready Contact Form v.2.0WP

WordPress-Ready Contact Form v.2.0WP

This plugin is simple to install and can be done in a matter of minutes. The following steps will guide you through the process:

Unpack the *.zip file and extract the /wp-gbcf/ folder and wp-gbcf_readme.txt file. Using an FTP program, upload the /wp-gbcf/ folder to your WordPress plugins directory (Example: /wp-content/plugins/). In the sub-directory, /wp-gbcf_themes/, using FTP or your server admin panel, change the permission of the CSS theme files to 666, but you’ll only do this if you’ll want to edit them. Open your WordPress Admin panel and go to the “Plugins” page. Locate the “Secure and Accessible PHP Contact Form” plugin and click on the “Activate” link.

Once activated, go to the “Contact Form” page and select the “Configuration” link on the sub-menu. If you need help, review the “Form Configuration Instructions.” You won’t be able to enter the URL yet, though. Once configured as much as you can, go to the “Write” page and click the “Write Page” If using a default page template give it a name like “Contact Page,” for example. Now go back to the “Configuration” page and add the URL of your newly-created form page. “Save” your changes. Now go to “Manage” and click on “Edit Pages” link on the sub-menu. Then locate your contact page an click on the “Edit” link to the right of it. With the page file open, add this code <!–gb_contact_form–> to the text area and “Save” the page.

To style your form, select the “Styling” link. There you may select one of the ready-made themes (designed for specific popular WordPress themes), use no theme, or create your own using the style sheet editor provided.

to continue to  ”Website Development With WordPress: Planning your strategic sitemap” please click here.

Business Website Best Practices

posted by admin
Martes, noviembre 3, 2009

Carrie Hill wrote a very interesting article about website best practices for small businesses in Search Engine Watch, Nov 25, 2008. After reading, I decided to elaborate on the content about designing a Web site with business in mind. She made a 25 item list, and I decided to go a little bit further. The general idea is to design a site that will please your visitors and the search engines.

First of all, install some kind of website statistics software. An online solution like Google Analytics it’s at the top of the list!, but you may also consider Piwik which is a PHP MySQL software program that you download and install on your own webserver. Monitoring your website is a must in commercial software!

Piwik Main Screen

Piwik Main Screen

Allow space for a minimum of 250 words of relevant text if possible but you should be careful about writing too much text and loading it to your website or blog site. For the Internet, there are different types of writing that are more appropriate.  Bold only key ideas in the text. Adding too much bold will over-emphasize the whole page, which is counterproductive. Generally, bullet points, bold words, short paragraphs and breaking up a lot of text and make it easier for viewers to read. Also ensure you have the right balance between text and graphics. Graphics-heavy Web sites with little (or no) text can make it hard for a search engines to determine the relevancy of your site to queries you should rank for. Images and graphics, on the other hand, help tell a story about your products and services.

Break up long paragraphs with photos or bullet points. Use a readable font and font size, and one that is hopefully easily scalable for low-vision users. Use quality graphics and photos. Poor photography can lead to less trust in what you’re offering. Remember: a picture is worth 1,000 words. If possible avoid Flash elements and java photo slideshows, they usually are visually attractive but various different web clients (mozilla, Internet Explorer, Chrome, etc.) may not show them correctly or use up bandwidth and system resources.

Create an eye-catching website header. This makes an impression on visitors, much like the façade, front door, or foyer of your store. Also consider how easy the home page and interior pages will be to manage in the future. Simple objective designs seriously influence the sites appeal. Please work on a modular design and consider your website should be able to link new pages and grow and change over time. Also use Cascading Style Sheets (CSS) to keep excessive code out of the way. This leaves a clean and concise interface for the search engines. And please remember your phone number should be prominent and located at top of page in large type. Additionally, if your business is not web based, location of your offices should be prominent and obvious on the page. Use header tags on every page — your tag should support the page title and be relevant to on page content that follows it.

If you include an online store, create logical and custom navigation with “Product” and “Purchase” links in clear view. Place strong call to actions throughout the site. Make it very easy for your user to find the “buy” button and get through your checkout process. Buying or reserving information should be prominent and above the fold (book now, checkout, shopping cart, etc). Don’t overload your contact or RFP forms with information. Make it simple and easy to fill out and submit — name, phone, e-mail address and comments are the basics. If you ask for personal information via a sign up or contact form, then you need a privacy policy.

Search engines don’t care how the words are delivered — paragraphs or bullet points are fine — just as long as your services and products are fully described on each page. Write unique page titles and meta descriptions for each page. This is ad copy, so take advantage of it. Sell using great keyword phrases and calls to action. Have a static HTML sitemap and an XML sitemap that can be uploaded to your Google Webmaster Tools account. Remember: when you add pages to a site, update your navigation and sitemap. Consider having static sitemap links that use main keyword phrase for the page it links to. It doesn’t hurt to wrap some descriptive text around those sitemap links either.

Finally, if you go into the process with some knowledge, hiring someone who can build you exactly what you need to be successful will be much easier and you’ll have some realistic and professional advice. If interested, please contact us, we can quote you on a site that accomplishes all of this and more.

to return to  ”Website Development With WordPress: Installing your chosen design theme” please click here
or to return to the tutorial index please click here.

One of the main reasons to choose a CMS (Content Management System) as one like the WordPress platform is it’s search engine friendliness. Making wordpress search engine friendly is, basically, to improve search engine readability. The reasons for you to make this changes are so to improve this friendliness, and this is not a minor thing to consider.

A word about search engines: google.com is the ultimate search engine website. With almost 98% of all search traffic being routed via their website and their automated advertisment campaigns (aka. adwords) we want to be google friendly. In fact, most other search engines (as Microsoft’s bing, Yahoo, etc) make use of google to feed their own systems. So, google.com is the place to be. We will make our website the more “google friendly” we can. And, luckily,  this can be made with very little effort.

Permalinks

First, let´s change the way your URL’s show in the address toolbar of your web client (internet explorer, google chrome, firefox, etc.) By default, the wordpress instalation uses interrogation symbols and a lot of numbers to reach each page in your website. This is not so friendly to search engines. In fact, a simple “houses.html” would be more useful if you wanted to be placed in the search engine directory under “houses” keyword. And what would be great would be to simply use the post title as a url address. So, if you made a post under tha title “Nice Houses”, then this post page could be reached via “www.yourwebsite.com/nice-houses”.

In wordpress this is a very simple configuration. Please go to “Options>Permalinks” and change “Common Options” selection to “Date and Name” and save your changes. Once this is done, the whole database will be updated, and from now on, your pages will be reachable in the form “http://www.yourwebsite.com/2009/11/02/sample-post/”.

All in One SEO

Now, we will wan’t to prepare our webpages (not only the page address) for google indexation. This is not a complex process. I personally recommend a wordpress plugin named “All in One SEO”. This plugin will allow you to customize your keywords, title and description (and other meta tags) in an every page and a sitewide basis.

To install this plugin, simply download it from the author website and copy it into the /wp-content/plugins/ folder. Then goto the plugins section and activate this plugin.

Once active, you will be able to access a link under “Options>All in One SEO”. Please enable it, and change the home title, description and keywords to convenience. Make sure Canonical URLS and Rewrite Titles are checked. The rest should be left more or less the same.

That’s it. If you followed every step, your website should be up and ready to be google indexed in no time. A final word: allthouhg indexing is a fairly straight forward process, ranking (google placement of your website in a visible, reachable, searchable position) is not. On the contrary, usulally this is a very complex and lengthy process that requires analysis and a good strategy for your website to be properly placed in google. If you’d like further information on this process please contact us, we sell SEO services and would like very much to assist you anyway.

We hope this helped you making wordpress Search Engine Friendly.

to continue to  ”Website Development With WordPress: Adding WordPress Plugins You Will Need” please click here.

Castel Telecomunicaciones

posted by admin
Martes, octubre 27, 2009
Castel Telecomunicaciones

Castel Telecomunicaciones

Database driven website for chilean company Castel Telecomunicaciones. Programming, graphic design plus desktop back end software to feed the database. Everything done in php, Mysql for Apache.

This client was, and still is, a friend. We worked to develop a tech-like very simple design for his online catalog and to promote his image in the internet. This was an exciting and very good process. He now conducts most of his international sales via de website and has entered various new markets and exported to other countries due to this technology.

to return to  “Website Development With WordPress: Installing WordPress” please click here
or to return to the tutorial index
please click here.

Now we have reached a fully working wordpress installation. So, let’s make it look as it should. Remember that when your design was chosen, in the website you did your search, the design should have a wordpress version compatibility note. For example, the original design applied to this website you are reading was 2.7, meaning that the version for wordpress you should installed is 2.7. Please don’t disregard this recommendation.

First: Download your theme of choice
To install a wordpress theme, we will need to download it first. There are thousands of themes in the web, and in our personal wordpress template store we carry some of the best. A wordpress theme is a set of files usually compressed in a single zip file. It has a style.css file containing the name (unique to the directory), tags, version (in the format of x.x or x.x.x and be unique to the theme) and classes: .alignright, .alignleft, .aligncenter (see http://codex.wordpress.org/CSS for more details). It includes a screenshot file, screenshot.png, and be a real screenshot of the theme, not a splash screen. A GPL compatible license. It exposes RSS feeds, it support Gravatars and widgets, it shows (usually in side bars) post categories and tags, the blog title and tag line.

Once downloaded, the files should be extracted into a directory under the themes name. For exmaple, if the theme is called “theme 987” then the directory for the files should be “theme 987”.

Second: Upload the theme directory to WordPress
With your ftp file transfer program of choice (please see our previous post for a recommendation), upload the decompressed directory into /wp-content/themes/ directory. This should leave you with something like a /wp-content/themes/theme987 directory.

Third: Activate the theme within your WordPress admin panel

Wordpress Theme Selection

Wordpress Theme Selection

Login to your WordPress admin panel, and navigate to the Presentation tab. In the center you will find the “Current Theme”. This is the theme wordpress is configured to use right now. Below it, the list of “Available Themes”. These themes are themes you can use but aren’t configured as “Current” right now. To activate our desired theme simply click on any miniature in the list. The theme will enlarge and in the top right angle of the screen an activation link will present itself. To continue please press this link. Once this is done, this selected theme will turn into the “Current Theme” and if you go to your wordpress site (leave the administration area) will see your newly chosen theme.

If you don’t like this option, you can still change this theme anytime with the same process described in this third part of the article.

to continue to  “Website Development With WordPress: Making wordpress Search Engine Friendly” please click here.

to return to  “Website Development With WordPress: Chosse a hosting service” please click here
or to return to the tutorial index please click here.

Ok, by this moment you have already chosen a design and a hosting service where to place your website. So, finally, let’s begin installing the software.

Important, when your design was chosen, in the website you did your search, the design should have a wordpress version compatibility note. For example, the original design applied to this website you are reading was 2.7, meaning that the version for wordpress you should download to work with is 2.7. Please don’t disregard this information, as some versions of wordpress may have no compatibility issues in your design (for example a 2.7 version may very well work in 2.8), but if they do, you’ll find yourself hacking into the design to correct this issues.

Finally, let’s download the corresponding version. To do so, please click here (when this tutorial was published, the wordpress current version was 2.8.4) . The file you will download is a .zip compressed format file containing all the WordPress Software. This software has to be unzipped and transferred to your hosting service. By the way, our article consideres you have registered and delegated a domain for your future website. If not, please read our article about “Choosing Domain Names to tackle this issue.

Once downloaded the wordpress zip (in our case wordpress-2.8.4-zip), please feel free to decompress the zip file. If you don’t already have a winzip or a similar sofwtare installed, maybe consider 7-zip. 7-zip is an excellent full compression solution, it’s open source and it’s free. You can visit their website by clicking here. Download, install, decompress the wordpress zip.

FileZilla WordPress Path

FileZilla WordPress Path

Now, upload the decompressed folder structure to your hosting. To do this you will need a ftp transfer program. Personally, and after using various ftp software programs, I can recommend filezilla ftp client. This software it’s also open source and free, multiplatform and very reliable. In our development team it has wide acceptance. To download filezilla please click here. To simplify things, I recommend you put the folder structure under your web root directory (the web directory that will show when you type http://www. yourwordpresswebsite.com/), this will make things a lot simpler when search engines start to crawl your website and visitors want to remember links. In linux based hosting services, this would be the inside the public_html directory, and so, for example, the path to your wordpress index.php would be /public_html/index.php (see figure).

Once you’ve copied all the content into the hosting directory, let’s start installation.

First we need to create a database in the webserver. As explained before, we recommend a cpanel enabled website, so this article will explain how to do this with the cpanel software installed, but you can do this with any software your host provides, as long as you can create an empty datababase and a user with priviledges to create, edit and delete all structure and data in that database.

In case you have cpanel, goto http://www.yourwordpresswebsite.com/cpanel and login with the user/password you were provided upon subscription to your hosting service. Look for the Database section of the cpanel screen and choose the corresponding MySQL icon.

MySQL Cpanel Icon

MySQL Cpanel Icon

Keep in mind that your Cpanel account may be using a skin or different theme, so it will not always look exactly like the screenshot above. Now you will be introduced to athe MySQL database admin area of cpanel. The first step in the process will be to create the database.

Create Database

Create Database

My recomendation is to choose a simple name, as WP or wordpress. Enter the name in the form and click on “Create Database”. This process will create a database in your webserver, tipically, under the name “username_databasename”, so for example, if your cpanel username was “johnuser” and you named “wordpress” the database you created, your datababse will have to be addressed “johnuser_wordpress”. This is because in shared hosting environments the database name has to be unique and so the software will always append the username to the database so to guarantee this. Now we should create a user for the database.

Database User

Database User

Choose a simple name, easy to remember, for example admin. This will not make your security vulnerable, as the real trick for not easily being hacked is a good password (Please see our section about password selection to deepen this particular issue) and lets simply say that the password must be at least 10 characters long, should have numbers and alphanumeric symbols, and must evade dictionary words. Now enter both, and press “Create User”. This will create a user that can be assigned, with certain priviledges, to your newly created database.

Assing User to Database

Assing User to Database

In the future, this same user can perform tasks in other databases. In MySQL, as in various database server softwares, users and databases are independent entities that relate themselves according to privileges. Privileges are what a user can do in the corresponding database. So, simply choose your new user and database from the drop downs and click on the “Add” button. Now you will be taken to another sreen to choose what privileges should the user you’ve created have in this database.

Choosing privileges

Choosing privileges

Simply select “All Privileges” to ensure wordpress will be able to perform all tasks needed in the database.

Once the database is created, the rest is quite simple, go into your ftp software and rename wp-config-sample.php file to wp-config.php.

Edit this file with a text editor (Important: never use a word processor like Microsoft Word for editing WordPress files!) and fill in your database details by replacing the default values in your in this file with your own specific database settings.

Set Database Name:  Replace putyourdbnamehere, with the name of your database, e.g. MyDatabaseName. The line should read … define(‘DB_NAME’, ‘MyDatabaseName’); // Example MySQL database name
Set Database User: Replace usernamehere, with the name of your username e.g. MyUserName. The line should read … define(‘DB_USER’, ‘MyUserName’); // Example MySQL username
Set Database Password:  Replace yourpasswordhere, with the your password, e.g. MyPassWord. The line should read … define(‘DB_PASSWORD’, ‘MyPassWord’); // Example MySQL password
Set Database Host: Replace localhost, with the name of your database host, e.g. MyDatabaseHost. The line should read … define(‘DB_HOST’, ‘MyDatabaseHost’); // Example MySQL Database host

Finally, when this is done, save the file to your server, and if you copied the wordpress files directly under your web root, run the WordPress installation script by accessing http://www.yourwordpresswebsite.com/wp-admin/install.php. If you installed WordPress in its own subdirectory called blog, for example, you should visit: http://www.yourwordpresswebsite.com/blog/wp-admin/install.php.

Finally, you will be directed to the administration login, where you can enter the user/password you provided during the installation and start the configuration process.  There are many options to configure, and we will start by installing the chosen designer theme. Please continue to next section now.

to continue to  “Website Development With WordPress: Installing your chosen design theme” please click here.

to return to  “Website Development With WordPress: Chosse a design that fits your needs” please click here.
or to the tutorial index please click here.

Ok, now, you have chosen your design and we will have to select a vendor to host our wordpress based website. But … what is a web host, at least, what is a web host ideal for our needs ?

A web host is a place in a public computer (available to anyone in internet) where your website contents can be stored. Understand that any website (yes, the sum of pages you explore via your internet explorer, mozilla firefox, google chrome, apple safari, etc.) is simply a group of files that are stored in this public computer (aka. “host” or “webhost”) and delivered to your computer upon your request (when you tipe google.com and press enter in the address bar of your web surfing software).

There are various options for storage that you can aquire for hosting a wordpress solution, but we will mainly focus on shared hosting – sometimes called virtual hosting – which is usually the cheapest form of paid hosting available. Your site sits on a single web host with sometimes hundreds of other sites. The service is usually pretty reliable and you don’t have to worry about tinkering with the server. However those hundreds of sites can put quite a load on the server, resulting in a slow site at peak times, and you don’t have much control over the server should you need to install and customize complex Web applications. Many shared hosting plans also limit the usage of resource-heavy Web software such as forum scripts. There are also security issues to think about – if the Web server is compromised, all the sites on that server may be affected.

To be prepared for this we will take into consideration mainly four factors:

Technical Aptitude

We need our server to be prepared for hosting a wordpress backed website and this implies various things to be present: the web host must run an Apache Web Server. The web server is the software in the web host that runs it all, shows your files, executes your scripts, balances visitor demand and traffic load, etc. Remember, Apache is a must. The web host must also run PHP. Php is a web scripting language used to program in web servers (well, it’s more than that, but let’s keep it simple).  Also, the web host must have a database, MySQL is prefered, as all information you put into your website (for instance, this article you are reading right now) will be stored in this database.
Additionally, web hosts charge not only for the server configuration, but for space and other services they provide. You should be considering a storage space of at least 25mb and a transfer quota of at least 10 times that. The storage space in the web host is the space needed to store your content in their computer. 25 mb is pretty slim if you are going to host lots of media (like pictures and audio), but for a start up you should be ok. The transfer quota is the amount of information being delivered by your website to the visitors. If a visitor takes a look at a 0.1MB picture or listens to a 2.5 mb audio file, the transfer quota is affected.

Cpanel Main Screen

Cpanel Main Screen

Usually, when more space or transfer quota is required, you can upgrade your plan in the web host, and the problem should be solved.
finally, the hosting should provide a way for you to create mail accounts, manage your backups, even provide good visitor statistics (althouhg we will configure a plugin directly in wordpress for this). A complete cpanel solution is a good recomemdation, as cpanel allows you to manage all of this and more in your server from anywhere.

QoS and Uptime

These to factors are a must for you to consider. QoS (Quality of Service) is very important. In the computer world things go wrong, this is normal, and you must learn to live with it. But the best solution for this problems is a good technical service you can count on. Remember, IT (information technology) is a relationship of trust, and if you can’t trust the hosting company in which you are placing all this effort, this is a major setback. The web host should have a simple orgainzed way in which you can address any problem you have in your hosting experience. Ticketing system (a support form where you explain your problem and receive a solution via mail) is usual stuff. If you have an online chat support or similar, better. If you have a 24×7 phone support, it’s ideal. But remember, usually the faster the service the more expensive it gets. Anyway, besides the support system, if the hosting company is prompt to answer and eager to solve your problems, that is your hosting company!

Uptime is another issue. Your hosting company can usually predict, considering their experience and equipment, a projected uptime. The uptime is a percentile figure expressing the relationship of your site showing / not showing for technical reasons. Say that the host company projects a 99,95% uptime, this means that in a calendar year you may have your website nearly 2 days offline for techncial problems in their service. This can be a lot altogether, but this is usually spreaded along various incidents. All the same, please look for a 99,98 or better uptime projection.

Hosting Lag

Do you wan’t your visitors waiting for your webpage to come on screen? Since you type the website address till it show in your computer there is a usually small time space. This time is what we call a lag. This lag can be due to several reasons. For example a slow internet connection or an old computer can produce lag in website showup. But to simply differentiate your website lag from general equipment and internet lag, compare your showtime with other websites (as this one for example). If it’s similar, then you are ok, if it is faster, much the better. But if it is slower, consider finding another host.

Cost

Finally, the bottom line. It all comes down to money. Usually a commercial reasonable cost for an average website that can cope with all this needs should be around u$30 monthly. In my experience, chaper hosting will have more downtime and a very bad service.

There are endless considerations about the parameters to judge a hosting company, but this four should get you up and going with minimum hassle.  Consider this: a problematic host can cause you a real headache when your website goes down and nobody answers for this !. It is VERY important that the domain registration and delegation is done by yourself, not by the hosting company. You should be in control of your domain registrar account. Please see our article about domain registration to understand this.

to continue to  “Website Development With WordPress: Installing WordPress” please click here.

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Wordpress, when first installed, comes with a very basic design, clean and concise, ideal for blogging and online publication. But you don’t wan’t the wordpress desing, as you need something more fit with your website needs. Personally, and mostly if this is your first attempt at website development in wordpress, you’d be better to choose from a place like Template Monster or something similar. In fact, this website is a modified version of a Template Monster template. This website designs are inexpensive and easy to add in your installation.

Many wordpress themes in Templamonster to choose

Many wordpress themes in Templatemonster to choose

Please consider your needs when choosing the design as adapting a design is not that simple. Consider that all the website intelignece has to be adapted to fit this design, so any change matters !. The idea is to remain as faithful as possible to the original chosen design, so to minimize changes later ! Template Monster and other wordpress template websites have thousands of options to choose from. If you think your website is going to need a contact section, verify that the design has a place for a contact section, if you are going to offer a service, choose a desgin that clearly is service oriented, not product oriented, etc. I think you get the point.

If you searched thoroughly, but did not find what you need, or have any questions, please mail me, maybe I can help you.

Now, suposing you found your design, let´s move on.

Continue to “Website Development with WordPress: Choose a Hosting Service” please click here.

Website Development with WordPress: Foreword

posted by admin
Miércoles, octubre 7, 2009

So, you’ve been thinking on how to get your products / services online, but you understand this is not an easy task. In fact, once you’ve conceived a starting website design, adapted the logo and other miscellaneous in your corporate image to a website design frame, you’ve decided to start coding your html pages. You know you will have a tough time with forms, as you want people to contact you, and if you want lot’s of pages explaining your products or services individually, you will have to redundantly copy your website heading, footer and common content in all this scheme. Maybe, if luky, you also know a little PHP, and you decide to include your header and footer pages as common content, and script them into other pages, so to somehow modularize your work. But you also need a balanced webpage as you wan’t it to rank. also, if your code is too complex, no one will be able to get content into the webpage but you. And to be properly indexed, robots, sitemaps, crawlers, multilanguage !!! this is a very big and complex task. But, on the other hand, I think something like WordPress can help you. In fact, all this website is made in a hacked version of wordpress.

Wordpress may be a website development solution !

Wordpress may be a website development solution !

You may not think of wordpress (yes, the Blog Tool grown to CMS ), or any other blogging tool by the way, as a good starting point to build up a website, but in fact, it is. Website development is a complex technique involving marketing, corporate image, technology and commercial intuition. Yes, it’s seriously multidisciplinary. Any help you or your company can get in this task is welcome, and wordpress is an excellent starting advantage to muster.

I’ve always believed in practical example, so, to illustrate my article, I will explain how this website was built from “head to toe” so to provide with all the insights this process will have. We’ve done this process several times for many of our clients, and all have been very succesfull. So if you are up to it, please follow me and let’s develop a website!

Ok, we will start by describing the main issues involved in this process:

  1. Choosing a website design
  2. Choosing a hosting service
  3. Installing WordPress
  4. Installing your chosen design theme
  5. Making wordpress Search Engine Friendly
  6. Adding Plugins You Will Need
  7. Planning your strategic sitemap
  8. Adding your first Entry
  9. Hacking WordPress Entry Pages
  10. Making a Contact Us Page
  11. Hacking WordPress Main Page
  12. Working on SEO
  13. Final Word

Ok, now, let’s get into more detail.

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