If you're wondering whether you need a presence on the internet, you're not alone. Are you struggling to make sense of the various options? Whatever level of Internet experience you have - We can help you! Please take the time to read through the following step by step web site guide which may explain just how you get started.
We deal with small businesses and local tradespeople all the time who are not over familiar with the Internet, so we devote our time firstly to explain exactly how things work, and then by providing the right amount of personal support to gets things done. In this way we link your requirements to the right level of design and support that your business demands. - a complete package.
"I am new to the Internet and my experience is limited."
Thousands of individuals and businesses are in the same situation. The following guide gives you some background and hopefully a better understanding of the Internet which in turn may help you to decide what to do. If not, then you can call us and speak to real people and we will be able to explain things more fully.
What happens if I have a website?
Many feel they need to get themselves or their business or organisation "on the net". Often they aren't sure exactly what this means, but think they should be doing it. Everyone else seems to have a web site!
Being "on the internet" can mean many different things. We use the term "Internet Presence" to describe all or any of the possibilities, but more specifically, being visible on the internet so that other people can find you. Here are some of the things your internet presence might include:
- Website - as a general visual advertisement, there and on show all the time,
- E-mail address - easy communications
- Listings in directories, search engines and perhaps other avenues of advertising and auction sites.
Should I put my business on the internet?
Some organisations really don't have much use for the internet, in fact many small businesses survive without a web site at all. However, if you're in business or if you represent an organisation of any kind, then we can almost guarantee that some sort of internet presence will benefit you. It may be a full-blown website, it may be a lower-cost alternative, it may be a simple listing in a directory. In any case it makes sense to explore the options.
I don't use the Internet.
It doesn't matter. You don't necessarily need to use the internet to have an internet presence, just as you don't need to read the phone book to be listed in it. Just remember that most other people do use the internet -- more and more use it as their main source of information. If you're not there, you're slowly but surely becoming invisible.
Do I need e-mail?
Do you need a postal address or a telephone? If not then maybe you don't need an email address. Otherwise you certainly should be considering it. You may be surprised at how useful email can be, certainly regarding the speed at which all sorts of documents can be sent and received
Should I have a web site?
Generally speaking, you should consider having a web site if any of these criteria apply to you:
- You would like to provide information about your business/organisation to the public.
- You would like people to have a good chance of finding you on the internet.
- You would like your business/organisation to have a professional image.
- You would like to sell goods or services over the internet
- You would like to be seen as a bone fide business or company.
Okay, I have decided to get a Web Presence. Where do I start? Read on........
With Local-hosts.co.uk, it is possible to have a basic web site with an email address just by purchasing a domain name, we offer all the facilities to get a web presence online using our free home page design service just by making a single domain registration. So, as a minimum, you just need to register a domain name from £6.99 per year.
Choose your domain name carefully.
make sure it is easy to remember and easy to spell. Your domain is your website address. It could be your business name or a word to describe your business or products. If you purchase more than one it is easy to point your extra domains to the original domain. e.g.www.johnsmith-painting.co.uk or www.bestdecorating2go.co.uk be careful to consider the suffix, .co.uk signifies a UK company where .com signifies a 'global' company without a specific country of origin.
What do I have to do next?
Before you design your own web site then you will need to consider a web hosting package, somewhere to keep your information to broadcast it over the internet. This will provide you with web space, FTP facilities and full incoming/outgoing email for you to make your custom built web site available and accessible to everyone else within the internet community.
What plan do I need?
Your ideal web hosting plan really depends on what application you are using to design your website and how busy your website will be. If your site gets very busy in the future it is easy to upgrade. The services and facilities on all the plans we do are very competitive. We will be happy to advise you in plain english!
How do I go about making the individual web pages?
You may be able to create and design your own pages using an html design programme, or if you need our help, we provide a very competitive design service to all our customers. This provides you with a professional looking web site, links, counters and statistical information. We also provide a variety of web site templates for you to personalise. You can build professional looking web sites without any technical knowledge whatsoever - including ecommerce and web shops.
What do I do now I have created my web site pages?
All files are sent up to our SERVER where we broadcast them on to the internet. They are sent using a special ftp programme where after you input the server details you can upload, download and manipulate your files as necesary. We have easy to use ftp programmes for you to upload your files to our server and personal help to get you sorted.
If you are designing your own html (web pages) and are still unsure about uploading your files, send them to us and we will do it for you.
Ok, I understand all that and I want to find out how to get things going, what now?
If you are ready, the first job is to pick a suitable domain name – and you can do that here>>
Once you have found the right name just call us and we will do the rest!
Quick Questions for the more experienced
Q- How do I transfer in my existing domain name?
A- Have your IPS TAG changed to HEARTINTERNET, advise us accordingly and we will pick it up.
Q- Can I cancel if I am not happy with your service?
A- Certainly as we know you will be pleased with the levels of service and support we provide!
You can cancel at anytime. Cancel your account within the first month and get a full refund. Excludes any domains purchased through us or transferred in.
Q- Can I host an online shop?
A- Yes,your package comes with shop/ecommerce applications that are included in the package. They are easily installed on request. Our support does not include programming but we are more than happy to assist. Additional hosting charges may be due for the additional functionality required with some of e-Commerce applications. email firstname.lastname@example.org for details
Q- Can you create a site for me or help me with my programming?
A- Yes We can design sites for whatever you require, from template files through to fully designed and active web pages. Our support does not include programming but we are more than happy to assist. Drop us an email email@example.com
Q- I have not got a domain can you help?
A- Yes, when your account is setup you can use our domain search within our own control panel to check availability of a .uk domain or Just e-mail us and we will arrange one for you. If you do not know what domain your want we may be able to give some ideas and organise that for you.
Q- How long will my account take to be activated?
A- Most accounts are setup within 2-3 hours.
Q- How do I access my domain once I have transferred it in?
A- We provide you with an unique log in to your individual control panel which allows you to manage and manipulate your files.
Q- How do I upload files up to the web site?
A- Use a generic (usually free) FTP Client programme such as FTP Commander which provides a simple interface to transfer data to and from your site
30 Day money back guarantee does not include any domains previously purchased through ourselves. Refund is issued for web hosting only. Our 24/7 support does not include site debugging and error fixing that is, or may be part of, your own domain files and directories. You are not allowed to host illegal or inappropriate material such as copyright infringment, warez, backup storage or files or data that could damage our servers. Any such cases will be reported, the account imediately terminated and no refund issued. Account is to be used for hosting only and is subject to fair usage scheme.
Web hosting terminology
A term used by web hosts to describe how much data can pass from the server your website is hosted on to people visiting your web site. This includes the files that make up your website as well as any data downloaded from databases or media files.
A country code top level domain name. These domain names are associated with a country or geographic location e.g. .co.uk (UK), .fr (France and .cn (China). The ability to register these domain names from another country depends on the registrar's rules. For example, co.uk has no restrictions whereas .it (Italy) demands you are based in Europe.
The system that maps domain names to the corresponding machine's IP addresses. This system is essentially a phone book that translates human friendly names into computer friendly numbers. Because this information is stored across multiple computers any updates to a domain (including registration and ownership details) can take up to 48 hours to work its way across all of them.
File Transfer Protocol (FTP)
Once you are ready to see what your website looks like online, uploading the files to your web space is really easy and is often as simple as clicking, dragging and dropping. The method you will use to get your website online is called File Transfer Protocol (FTP). Don't be put off by the name, all this does is take the files from your computer and put them on to the web host's server for people to access. Simple!
In order to do this your web host may offer an upload function though your account with them, but that means you have to log in every time. A quicker alternative that most people use is FTP software. Some HTML editors come with this built in (e.g. Dreamweaver & Microsoft Expression Web) but even if yours doesn't there is the industry standard stand alone (which is free) to download called FileZilla.
HTML (Hyper Text Mark-up Language) is the first layer of a web page and deals with the content (the text, any lists, tables, quotes...).
LAMP is an acronym used to describe a set of open source software used by many people and businesses to save money and to prevent platform lock-in.
Linux: Operating system
Apache: Web server
MySQL (owned and developed by Sun Microsystems) is the world's most popular open source database. It is also part of the open source software stack known as LAMP (Linux, Apache, MySQL, PHP).
Sub-domain names are domains that are part of the parent domain name. They are free to set up and can be useful if you have areas of your site you want to categorise e.g. dictionary.domain.com, thesaurus.domain.com
Top Level Domain Names have no association with any countries and were amongst the first to be created. E.g. .com, .net, .org.
The amount of space allocated to your website by a web host to store all your files and data. The more web space you have the more information you can store.