You know you need a website, but where should you start?
When you make the decision to own a website there are some important factors to consider, both for now and the future.
Why did I choose Rocketspark?
After a lot of research, questions, recommendations and taking many factors in to consideration I made the decision to build and host all my websites on the Rocketspark platform. Rocketspark combines an easy-to-use website builder and hosting with support. It is packed with great design functionality and features. After I have designed your website it's easy for you to conduct edits and updates yourself. There is also an 0800 support line to a friendly NZ-based Rocketspark team.
- automatically stores all the files included in your website
- ensures your website is working and live
- automatically backs up your website
- creates charts detailing your website visits and sales
- makes it easy to add in lots of SEO information
- is locally hosted, which is favoured by Google search engines
- ensures your SSL certificate is current*
*SSL certificates show your visitors that your website is secure and safe (monitored by their website browser). This is so important these days and many hosting companies charge extra for this. It also helps with google search results.
Rocketspark are always improving their platform to take advantage of new trends and technology. Your site will be fully responsive, meaning it will look great on a tablet, mobile phone, desktop or any other screen size. Technical upgrades are automatic and included in your monthly subscription, so your website platform will always be up-to-date and stable. There is no need to pay a developer to do this. You are in good hands!
I recommend the Rocketspark website building platform and hosting package
From $33.25+GST per month (paid annually). If you are after a single landing page please ask me about Rocketspark's pricing for one page websites with e-commerce functionality.
Important factors to consider when building a new website
Choosing a domain name and registrar
This is your website address. I have registered www.designerbloom.net. Think about whether you would like total control over your domain name settings or if you want to access it through someone else. Rocketspark offers a free domain name for your first year.
Choosing a website designer and editing platform
An editing platform is the software your website will be built and designed on. I chose Rocketspark. You need to consider how your chosen platform updates are handled, if the platform is stable and secure, and if there is any support. Other things to consider are the additional cost of themes and if it’s easy to conduct website edits yourself.
All platforms require regular updating to the latest version to sort things like security issues. One concern from these updates is will your website break if upgraded to the new version? Will all the plug-ins still work? The reality is a lot of platforms (for example Wordpress) do occasionally break and always need to be manually upgraded to newer versions. How will you manage the updates, who do you call if problems arise, and how much will it cost to fix?
Beware of the hidden costs of free or inexpensive website building platforms, for example who do you call if something doesn't work on your website? With Rocketspark everything is automatically managed for you, meaning all you need to do is make sure your content is up-to-date.
Choosing a website host
There are a multitude of companies out there promoting and selling the services to store your website files and ensure your site is Live. Many will include all of the above at a great monthly price. This may sound like a simple solution to start with, however unless you are keen to stay with this all-in-one solution forever it can create complications later on. For example, if you wanted a brand new website built by a designer who uses a different website platform and host. This is where the all-in-one solution companies can make it technically tricky for you to de-bundle your emails out of your website hosting package, and can end up costing you more. It’s best to have a Host which offers great support and unlimited website traffic management, and is local. Local hosting mean your website will load fast... Google loves that!
Choosing your email service provider
Most registrars also offer an email add-on service. It is important to make sure your domain name and email account are set up under your name as the owner, providing you full access to the settings via a login and password. You can keep your emails and website hosting together, or you can have them separate by using services such as Office 365 or G Suite.