Skills preferably required, but not necessary
The world of websites isn’t really limited to experienced web designers and creators only. Basic web tools and pre-made but highly customisable templates are freely available, and help people get their stuff online.
People access sites and pages everywhere these days – not just on computers. Through broadband and Wi-Fi, tablets, smartphones and mobile phones are now also involved in the online game. They help people expand from basic social media, email and multimedia and help produce other quality sites and pages.
Making online presence felt has always been available and free, but these days, it has improved a lot for common folk to use and develop on their own. There are also tie-ups and links that benefit the beginner to intermediate level independent website creators out there.
Everything is already online, just add some extras…
Those do it yourself website things back in the late nineties (geocities, angelfire, etc.) are not much different compared to the instant sites we have today; some of them were also free and easy to set up to begin with. The only difference today is much better graphics and layout and more dynamic content. They are basically the same: a choice of templates, with color and background options and places in it where stuff can be posted and also modified. Except now, we have even more options to explore with, and even money generating schemes, if done right.
Although owning prime real estate online (i.e. dynamic and fully working whole websites) involve some money, there are simpler, template based basic ones that can be had for free, with basic layout and design. Yes, it still pays to know coding and web design and to have skills in creating great, dynamic sites that pull people and also generate hits for advertising and linking. But these fully working whole sites are best left for the upper level: companies, brands, professionals and those that have major presence on the World Wide Web.
For individuals that want their own sites for personal, hobby or indie-level business needs, everything is possible online, just add some basic smarts and limitless imagination to create visit-worthy sites and for free too. People can start by creating accounts on free basic web building sites online, or use wordpress, blogspot or any other blog generators out there. Although these are just basic sites, the level of customisation allows for a lot of personalised parts. Most of them can also be used with code, either from programmers and actual web designers and web developers, as well as the code generated from website making apps which are easy to use.
A great layout and eye catching aesthetics are possible using these free sites. Basic color, fonts and frame combinations can be used effectively. After this, well-chosen images and content follow, in order to make simple but awesome webpages. Also, a lot of imagination, ingenuity and web smarts help a great deal will go a long way.
Some important things to keep in mind
Aside from these ready-made templates that we can customise and add content on, we also have simplified programs that lets users layout a website as it actually appears online, often without generating a code or html code from scratch. In this case, it’s the other way around. It lets users with no knowledge or experience to use a graphics layout program to create a pages and “layout” the site per page, which then generates a simplified code. Programs such as Dreamweaver CC lets individuals create in this manner, and a whole package includes a Cloud server for uploading pages and content in one easy to use app.
The design must be tweaked further until ready for publishing, and must abide by basic internet “laws” or courtesies. Material must be safe from minors, and not espouse anything offensive or illegal. Final versions must follow these basics and have worthy content. As it develops over time, interlinking and exchanges with other sites can happen, and for those that build up bigger followings online can help monetise their creation by dealing with advertising. There are several levels – from ad-clicks, link exchanges, hit generation and many other ways, and generate money to support the site and the creator as well.
Since we are now in an age where there are several formats online and many ways to access pages, we have to take them into consideration. As mentioned, web access from handheld gadgets and devices like smartphones, mobiles and tablets are highly involved and must fit their format as well. Some sites are to be optimised to make sure they appear and load properly on smartphones and mobile phones. Others might take a while to load and will be proper for those only on broadband and high speed internet. Those that load with flash, heavy multimedia, animation or with streaming audio or multimedia are much preferred for users on a fast speed / broadband internet connections like ADSL, Cable or even NBN.