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Internet Guide

We started working on the internet in 1998, here are some observations and tips.

What is the Internet?

  • The internet is a rapidly expanding network, a technological community sharing information and conducting business over a communications network.

Scams and Rip-offs
The internet has opened up almost as many possibilities to offend as there are opportunities to share knowledge and conduct a business. With websites the greatest scam is over charging; the German government spent over 3 million euros in 2008 on a website to match employers with job seekers and many companies charge in excess of 1000$ per page.  Overall cost is determined by it's functions. Shop around!

The major scam that affects all internet users is spam or unsolicited email offering deals that are to good to be true or fishing for your bank account details. Spam is almost impossible to avoid, but you can filter some of it directly to the trash and never ever send any user name, login name or password to anyone including your isp, bank or website that you are a member of.

Websites
You want a website?  How do you decide what you want and where to start? There are limitless options and many experts, finding your way can be time consuming, frustrating, and a waste of time, capital and resources. You can do it yourself for free, and there is no upper limit.

  • In addition to actual sales, success is often determined by co-operation with other site owners, content, structure, ease of use, search engine ranking and other elements.
  • A domain is an internet address, like the number on your post box. (i.e. http://www.yourname.com)
  • A typical website has an index, pages of contents and means of navigation and communication.

Basic costs

  • Domain registration - from $10.00 with typical fees ranging from $10.00 - $80.00 per domain per year depending on which country you live.
    • There are huge ranges in prices charged for domain registrations.  We have used different providers who typically charged $50 - $80 and many providers have reduced fees in the past years. Today we use godady.com and 1stdomains.co.nz who provide excellent service and value..
  • Domain Hosting
    • We also recommend Godady who offers excellent value.
  • Site construction
    • typically from $50.00 per page
    • costs reflect the time and level of expertise in construction
  • Site management software
    • if required, and once established, reduces overheads and improves functionality.
  • Web server and internet connections - can be in excess of $10,000,00
    • If you have the capital sitting there, that's fine, but this is only necessary if setting up a managed network.
    • The alternative is to rent website space typically $15.00 - $100.00 per month.
  • Technical support
    • typically $50.00 - $200.00+ per hour.

You want a website,  Where do you start?
It helps to know:

  • What you want to achieve
    • If you are a business, you will want a site that will serve existing customers, attract new customers, be easy to navigate and look good. Technically pages will load quickly.
    • For a personal interest site, define the interest be it interactivity, games, file sharing etc,  learn as you go as a hobby.
    • Become an internet entrepreneur, and earn cash.
      • Talent and resources are required, but you can start for free and learn as you go as a hobby.
         
  • Does your site want to be static, or will it need to change often?
    • A static site which needs few changes will require little maintenance.
    • If your site content will be changing often, you will have to learn to do this,  or hire a webmaster or content manager.
    • Many site software programs allow you to login and edit your site, this way it can be self managed within a stable format.
       
  • Your target audience and develop functions to achieve your desired results.
  • Your budget
    • $00.00, ok get free software and build a free site yourself, you can learn.
    • Up to $1,000.00. you should be able to get a functional site up to 20 pages with a customer contact form.
      • This is ideal for many small retailers and service providers.
    • Up to $5,000.00. now you get a lot, or did you just pay more than this for your 6 page site?
      • As you move into more serious money, you need to be clearer in you expectations.

Website functions:

  • A business flyer
    • This can be a simple brochure/advertisement to promote your business.
      • Sites of this nature can be as simple or elaborate and constructed in many formats
  • Sell products and services
    • Requires product descriptions with the ability to collect orders and payments
      • product catalogue, and sales tools.
  • Interactive sites
    • Usually cost in terms of software and development

Hosting
To have a website, you either need to use:

  • Your own server - expensive
  • A free host - carries advertising
  • Leased server space, your site is stored on a computer belonging to an ISP - the most widely used method and you will need to have your own domain.

Site Creation:
.html is one of the most common ways of publishing internet content and give lots of freedom to be creative, both in site appearance and functionality. Other server languages include .php, .mysql, .cgi, .shtml, flash, and others.  We began using Netscape's internet browser and communicator which is still a great free tool to use, then began using Microsoft's front page. So if you can use a computer, it is not hard to learn the basics.

How long does it take to build a site? This comes back to size and function. A good editor may create a simple 5 page site in a day, others may take years and the internet is a creative and sometimes profitable hobby area, or it could be a full time occupation.

To Have a Site Built:
If you work full time, this is a better choice. When your site is up, managing email will be an important task and popular sites may require a mail management system for you and your staff to manage.

The time taken to construct a site depends on requirements. A simple 5 - 10 page .html site with an enquiry form may take from a few hours to a week. A large database driven site may take months and the process accelerated by purchasing software.

How to Proceed:
Write down your objectives, look at and make notes on websites that your like as this may help in choosing features and discuss your project with several designers. 

 
 


Site Creation By Intervision.co.nz
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