Friday, June 3, 2011

Website Hosting Domains Shopping Carts, Do I Need It

Hello everyone, and Welcome to LilacsNDreams! Glad to have you here!


Time to have another topic for ya'll to read, share some opinions, and offer what I have read too. Websites, should I have one, do I need one, so much work, is it necessary, and boy those things cost too. Yes, you are right, they can be costly. Depends what you all want to do with it, what your goals are, and how much you would like to spend with it too. 


No matter how many storefronts a person has it is good to have a website. The website can serve as your home base, links your web presences to one another, and serves as your "hub" that will direct visitors to your stores, your blogs, and serves as kind of an online business card. 


Before jumping into this I recommend searching around a bit. Do searches about them, see what others say, and suggest. Calculate how much you would like to spend for the website. Cost of hosting, your domains, the shopping carts, and do you intend to advertise to get your website out there too? A lot of things to consider. 


What is the best Host, and what should you consider? You need to consider it needs to be affordable for you. I know Hostgator starts about $3.96 a month, and I see that one mentioned often by others using. The host needs to perform well for you, and your visitors. You need to be able to draw traffic. Does it give you the option of setting up a shopping cart, or is it included maybe? Make sure you have support staff that is available 24/7, and that it has the tools to let you edit the site yourself too. And, this one I like myself, it should provide for a blog if you would like to have one too. Another thing is can you do the domain with them, or do you need to go some where else for that? 


Having a website is great for business cards. You use your main domain name on the card with the URL, and it will lead people to the website. From there they can view, and click to where they prefer to shop at. Your traffic can come from your host, and also your business cards too. 


Now, there are some websites that are free to use too. Depends how much work you want to work with it yourself, what you are knowledable with, and where you feel comfortable at. 


I have one. Actually on my 3rd, 4th, or whatever I had signed up with. There are different free ones out there. Some I have liked, and some I do not like as well. Google has one you can set up as many pages as you want, it's free, and takes a little work. But, I am not all computer literate so sometimes anything will take a little work for me. Check google for  sites.google.com/?? Or, just go to google, and search it there. There is  Microsoft Office LiveFreeWebstore.org, Webstarts.comWix.com, and  Weebly.com. I know you can get one at Vendio, don't let the ebay thing bother you as it can be done without ebay, and I think that one was free? 

There is also Pro Stores that can be used, and I do believe that starts at about $30 a month. I have heard others mention it, and they like it.  I have been noticing some websites being done with vistaprint.com, and do not know the cost for them. Yahoo has business sites/stores that can be used, and not sure of their cost. Just a lot all there, and no way I could mention them all. Search google for many of them, read forums with sites and social medias to learn of some, and just roam the internet to find them too.


As I mentioned I have my website free, and that is with Weebly.com. Through bannerfans.com which is also free, I have made my banners, avatars, and such that are used with the site. I have set a tab that is a blog on my website...free, and I could add it in if I wanted to. I have directed 1 of my domains to this website. I got my domains through GoDaddy.com. I have never had an issue with them, pay a small yearly fee for the domains, and that cost is sooo small compared to paying fully for a website, and all the extras with it. 


I do not have a shopping cart on the site, although I could, or I could use the buy it now buttons as weebly does have that. Instead I use my rapid cart from Artfire, My widget from Ecrater, and for Addoway and the other stores I also have my RSS Feed going to the pages for them. 


I have chosen to use my website, and my blogs as my landing pages showing my links to the stores I sell with, links to all the blogs, link to my website, and so on. Maybe at some point I will add the shopping cart, and sell either with my blog or website. But, for now, for me, I am comfortable using them as landing pages, and making an internet presence that way. Please, visit my LilacsNDreams Website, and have a look around. It is not perfect, I am sure there is much more to do with it, and different ways to do things, but I am comfortable with it, and it works for me. Great support at weebly, and they have been getting used by quite a few too.


I hope this has helped you with the issues of a website. I know I have not covered everything for you, but hope I was able to give you some things to think about, consider, and research with. Thanks again for visiting with LilacsNDreams, and visit with me here anytime. Always welcome with the visits, comments, sharing, and so on.

          

6 comments:

  1. I too have tried out a number of options and finally settled on developing my Yahoo Small Business website, using paypal buttons for purchases. I could use their site designer for a more customized look, but just to get up and running I am using a pre-loaded design template I like. I have an MSN Office Live website too, which is the hub to direct browsers to everywhere else I am on the net. My blog is on blogger where I find it easy to use the tools. I choose to list most of my items on a stores only fixed price selling platform (ShoprietyStores.com) and give my customers a choice of venues. There are so many choices out there....just jump in and try them out. There is always a delete button if you're not satisfied with the results. Thanks for the thoughtful info in this blog Lilacs. I always enjoy reading your ideas and thoughts. Kare

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  2. Karen, Always a joy to hear from you! Thanks so much for sharing all of that. I have a blog with wordpress, but still prefer the one with blogger. I have had it longer, and it does just fine for me, and with the ease of use I cannot go wrong with it.

    I have seen quite a few using the yahoo small business website, and don't remember hearing anything negative about it either. Good For You!:) I keep forgetting, but I do think I have a MSN Office Live Website, but have forgotten about it. I will have to go in search again, and check...LOL:) Soooo many things out there, and very easy to lose track of things. But, as I have often said, and recommend...find what works for you. What you feel comfortable with, and where you feel better suits you...every place, everything works differently for everyone, and what they offer.

    Look at me! I could carry on endlessly. Thanks again for sharing Karen as it is always a joy with you, and for your lovely compliments. Take care, and wishing you the best of luck!:)

    Lilacs

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  3. First, let me thank you for stopping by my blog. I have considered a web page, but so far haven't jumped into that pool. Right now, starting the blog seems to be the most I can handle with all of the other stuff in my life, but your point, "and serves as your "hub" that will direct visitors to your stores, your blogs, and serves as kind of an online business card." is making me look at this again in a new light.

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  4. Mia,

    Welcome to LilacsNDreams, and happy to have here!:) I know what you mean about never enough time in the day to do all of it. I was there once, had waaayy too many things going all at once with blogs, websites, social medias, facebook, twitter, family, and then....to have time listing for my stores. Whew! Even typing that tires me..LOL:)

    One day, feeling a bit over whelmed, I decided it was time to take a step back, and look at things closer. There is sooo much great advice out there from everyone, many great people offering to share what they know & what works for them, but it was time for me to actually look closer at what was working for Me. And, that I did. I dropped a few of my social medias...you are found in google with some of them so I stayed with where I benefited from. I looked closer at my blogs...knowing to keep these as they are good to have. But, I decided to focus more attention to the ones I've had longer, and where I was seeing more results. The other ones I can still use to push links around, but they are tended to after everything else is done first. I looked at the websites I had, what I had started, and went with more focus to the one working for me, and that I felt good with too. So, that is now down to 1:)

    I have 3 stores right now...watching that too. I have 97 items in 1, 30? something in another, and about 20? something at another. I have plenty of more product here to list, but sales do slow for me right now, and I am taking this time to spend with my blogs, and the website. I am at a point where I am more comfortable with my choices, and have been working on a schedule of how I am attending to those...which so far has been working for me, and my lifestyle too.

    I hope to soon be listing again, and it might be sooner than I have anticipated, but am watching, and noting things till then.

    In the meantime, I watch google analytics which is set with my blogs, and website, and I can see a little of what has been happening so far. I am no expert, and there are many more sellers who do much much better than me, but for me it was time to almost go back to the basics of things, and look at it in a different light:)

    Mia, thanks again for visiting, and sharing with us here. I appreciate it. I wish you the best with your decisions, and your path you choose for you. Take care, and best of luck to you!!:)

    Lilacs

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  5. A very interesting read and a great post alltogether. thanks for sharing this information.

    Website Hosting

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