Hi Billy, Great to hear you found the article so helpful! There's no reason at all why you can't use a website builder to create a website for yourself, even a blog style site. I'd recommend having a look at our website builder comparison chart as this is a good jumping off point and will give you some ideas of where to start. Off the top of my head, I know that Wix launched a new version of their blogging tool, which is really easy to use and can be integrated as part of a wider site (thankfully Wix is also super easy to use so it's great for newcomers to web design like yourself!) Hope that helps, - Tom
Hi Jeremy, This is the most informative article on web design that I have come across. And I have read quite a number! I had a question though. I don't know anything about html/css or any code for web design, and I need to include a searchable database in a website I'm to create. Any ideas/tips on doing this on a WYSIWYG website builder? Thank you very much
Some web designers / developers like to install WordPress manually to get a custom install of the components they want and don’t want. Others will need to manually install because their web host does not have the “1-click-installation” capability. If this applies to you then you’ll need to have a quick read through of my Manual WordPress Set-Up Guide.
There is sometimes a difference between what visitors want to do on your site and what you would like them to do. For example, your potential clients may want to check the price of a product or service, but you want them to register for a demonstration. Offer your visitors a good reason to do what you intended without preventing them from doing what they want.
With a free website builder, you can’t set up a custom domain name that your visitors can easily remember. A free website builder also displays irrelevant ads, making your website look unprofessional. If you want to set up a custom domain name and remove their ads, then almost every website builder requires you to subscribe to a premium plan which is quite expensive. Another disadvantage is that the interface of most website builders come bundled with a lot of bloated options that you’ll probably never need. This makes creating a website a tedious task for novice users.
Assuming you want the website to be able to grade these exams, you will need to use some kind of server-side interactivity (meaning regular HTML won't work for this). If you decide to use WordPress, there are plenty of free plug-ins you can install that take care of all of this for you. If you code your own website, you might want to learn a server-side scripting language, like PHP, Ruby, or Python. There are lots of tutorials on the web that teach you how to do this.

If you build a website that’s optimized for search engines, then yes it will. It’s a common myth that you can’t rank as well with website builders – you definitely can! How to create a website that ranks in Google will require good content, and a bit of background research into SEO. Building websites that people can find is key to a good website marketing strategy, and not that hard to do.
Weebly is not the best website builder. Yes, it’s convenient and has intuitive interface but their web templates aren’t good. Compare them with free templates from Wix or with paid ones from Squarespace – they are really worthy and beautiful web templates. Weebly doesn’t have such. I think that many believe that Weebly is the best website builder because everybody talk about it and not just because it’s the best. It’s like about IKEA furniture – many like it but I wouldn’t say that it’s the best. You could better try to work with another platform.
Be careful not to obsess too much about all the "latest advice" on marketing websites. While some of the advice is useful and sound, a lot of it is not. Marketing is not a science––it's an ongoing, ever-changing experiment. You are the best judge for how your own promotional strategies are working (or not). Listening to users and learning from their experience is the most valid approach of all.
The back end, also known as the WordPress dashboard, allows you to fully manage your site’s content, community, functionality, and design. It’s accessible only by users who have an account on your site. To access your WordPress dashboard, you need to type yourwebsite.com/wp-admin in the address bar of your browser and login using your WordPress username and password.
People are often in a hurry. On average, you have about 3-7 seconds to capture people's eyeballs, so be smart about what people see first when they get to your page. To minimize your load time, don't overload with huge graphics. Compress them where possible. Use flashy technology JavaScript, Flash, Streaming Audio/Video, etc., sparingly and only if it is important to your presentation.
Hi there Shannin, What you're looking to create is a bit too advanced for the website builders we suggested above. You'll probably need a more specialized website builder (perhaps search for a "marketplace website builder"?) or have one custom built for you. If you decide on the latter, take a look at our guide on how to hire a website developer. Jeremy
Thanks for sharing your experiences with BigCommerce with us! That's awesome and I'm glad you're having a great time and getting great support from their team! I also heard that they are working on their own native Point of Sale system. I'm not entirely sure when it will be released, but hopefully soon. Shopify has their own POS system, which integrates smoothly with an online store built with their software. For those who are curious about BigCommerce, take a look at this discussion here. Thanks again for sharing and adding to this discussion! Jeremy
Templates provide a framework for your website — a coherent, attractive canvas for you to paint the content of your site onto. They’re how you can have a site that looks good without having to hire a designer. Templates dictate color scheme, what your homepage header and menu bar look like, and the content width on your site, so it’s essential to pick the right one.
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