Before You Begin…

Are you eager to begin making your website? Great! So am I!

But before you can get down and dirty with all the installations and what-not, lets spend a bit of time trying to figure out what the end result should be like.

Planning is a very important step of creating your website, and I am sure that you’ve spent a great deal of time thinking of the different things you will want on your website. This is the step where you put it all down on paper. So what are you waiting for? Grab a pen and paper and start writing!

Make a List…

Make a list of:

✓       The Pages you want on your website.
✓       The information you want to display on your website.
✓       The types of articles you would want to put on your website’s blog.
✓       The different categories and tags you might use on your blog.
✓       The various collaterals you want to showcase on your website.

Once you start writing these things down, you will start to see a mental picture of the way your website should look like when it is done. If required, organize the data into a more meaningful manner.

There is a good reason that we are engaging in this exercise before we actually install anything on your domain. This ensures that once you are done installing the CMS on your domain, you can begin pretty much right away!

Not only will this save you a lot of time, but it will also save you a lot of effort when you actually begin working on your website.

Example

Let me walk you through an example website. Let’s say, you are a writer and you’ve recently published your novel. Prior to that, you’ve had a few of your short stories published in various magazines. Now, with your novel coming out, you want to go all out and put up a great website to showcase your talent and reach out to your fans.

So, the pages in your website should talk about you, about your previously published short stories, and most importantly, your newly published novel. The website should also have a list of your upcoming events (in case you are doing appearances and book signings), and should give your fans a way to connect with you.

Taking all of this into account, the list of Pages you might want to have on your website would include:

  1. Home Page
  2. About Me (a short bio)
  3. Published Short Stories (links to short stories or the stories themselves)
  4. My First Novel (links to the Amazon page where people can buy the book)
  5. Events
  6. Contact Me (a form, links to the FaceBook Page about you, your Twitter feed)

Along the way, you can also collect all the necessary images (book cover pics, scanned images of the published magazine stories, pictures of you at earlier book signings, a nice pic of yours for the ‘About Me’ page) and other collaterals into a folder on your computer, so that its right there for you when you need it.

As for the blog on your website: make sure you have an idea of what you are going to write on there. Are you going to do a bunch of ‘how-to’ articles? How about putting down the thoughts that go through your head during your events? Do you want to share your experiences from your journey into the publishing world? The ideas for the blog are endless, really. And you can use all of them if that’s what you want!

Just make sure that you have the right categories under which these blog posts can be filed under. These categories and tags are a great way for people to search for your content online, and they also serve as SEO keywords for your blog / website. Make sure you have a list of these keywords – categories and tags ready with you before you proceed.

Great! Now that you have all your materials and ideas ready for you when you need them, you are ready to move to the next step!

(6 March 2013)


Madhavi spends her time writing web content and helping people make websites. She regularly blogs www.madhavighare.com and shares her thoughts about web writing and WordPress. She also explores her ardent fascination with myths and symbols via the Tarot cards on her blog www.taroticallyspeaking.com

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