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You may wish to use some publishing tools to create
your website, and use a FTP client to transfer
your web pages onto your web site. Here is a simple and quick guide to getting
your website up and running in no time!
There are a variety of ways to create content. The
easiest way is to use a Web content publishing tool such as Macromedia Dreamweaver, Macromedia Fireworks or a variety of other free
publishing tools that you can find on the internet. Other tools that are
helpful include graphical editing tools such as Paintshop Pro and even more dynamic content
generators like Macromedia's Flash. You
may also wish to edit your contents yourself by using a text editor and learning
HTML. Here are some pointers to learning HTML
Once you've finished your page/site, you'll need to
upload it to your web server. FTP (File Transfer Protocol) allows a person to
transfer files between two computers, generally connected via the Internet. You
can either FTP your files via the command line (i.e. DOS), or you can find
yourself an FTP client which executes all the commands in a drag-and-drop
interface. We would highly recommend the latter to beginners and experts alike.
FTP clients make the publishing process simple.
To FTP, you will need to know
the host location (i.e. www.ensim.com), as well as your username and password.
All your web site contents are stored in /home//public_html.
Using an FTP Client
Most FTP clients have the same basic layout, functionality, and price. Choosing one is simply a matter of personal preference. Some of the more popular clients for Windows-based computers include WS_FTP, CuteFTP, and BulletProof FTP and for Macintosh computers include Fetch, and Interarchy. All clients come with
documentation, and it shouldn't take you long to figure out how to get started.
But here are a few basics:
- There will be some kind of "Site Manager" feature
which will store all your FTP locations and their corresponding login
information. Once you enter this info, the client will automatically log you
- There will be three screens. One representing your
local machine, one representing the remote host, and one which shows the files
that are queued for transfer. You will need to navigate to the correct folders
on both your local machine and the host machine.
- You will then highlight the files you wish to upload
on your local machine, and there should be a button at the top that queues the
files for upload. The upload might execute immediately, or you might have to hit
a "Go" button first.
- That's it! Your files are uploaded! You should now
be able to go to your URL and view the page.
Search Engines and Internet
Probably the most common way to publicize your site and generate
traffic is to submit it to search engines (i.e. Google) and internet catalogs
(i.e. Yahoo!). Most of these sites have a form you can fill out to submit your
site. To save yourself some time, you can try a service that submits your site
to multiple search engines and internet catalogs by filling out just one form.
There are many of these services out there, such as www.submit-it.com. By adding
meta tags to your site, you can increase the relevancy of your pages in people's
searches. Meta tags will be discussed a bit later.
If your page has a theme,
seek out pages with similar themes and ask the webmaster to post a link to your
site. In exchange, you promise to add a link to their site on yours. This is a
great way to get the word out about your site for free.
Look for newsgroups where you
think people who would be interested in your site might frequent. Post a message
announcing your site and its features. Don't do this too often as it is
sometimes considered Spamming (unsolicited advertising).
If there are other pages that are
similar to yours, there might be a web ring out there dedicated to your kind of
site. Do an internet search for "web ring" and include a keyword related to your
site. If you join a web ring, you will need to add a web ring graphic and links
to your page.
If you really want to give your
site some exposure, you can create a banner ad and find a company that will get
your banner put up on numerous pages. The cost generally depends on the amount
of impressions (how many times it is seen) or click-throughs (how many times it
is actually clicked on).