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There are a number of different ways you can build a website, but you need to make your decision with three important points in mind. So let's go down some of the most common site building options and the pros and cons of each. DIY- build from scratch- you're building your website by creating individual web pages using some type of web page building tool like Expression Web, iWeb, or Dreamweaver and HTML.

Pros- if you're doing the work yourself, then the cost of building and maintaining the website is fairly low. If you know what you're doing, you have complete control over how your website looks. Plus you can do the maintenance yourself. Cons- You have to know what you're doing. This method has a pretty steep learning curve and can be time consuming if you're a beginner. You'll need to know how to use the tools, learn at least some basic HTML, and web design. Plus, if your design skills are limited, then your website may not look as professional as it could be.

Professional Web Designer or Developer- you work with a skilled web designer or developer create your website for you.

Pros- a good web designer can design and set up your website faster and more professionally than you could do yourself. This is a good choice if you don't have the skill, the time, or inclination to learn how to build your own website. A good web designer can also help you maintain your website and give you advice. Cons- A good web designer will cost you. In addition to hosting and domain fees, you'll also have to factor in the cost of the designer's services. You'll also have to do some research to find a designer that's within your budget, has the skills to create your site, and is reliable. Plus, you must be extra careful that you maintain your control of your website.

Turnkey web builder service- you use some kind of service like Big Cartel or the website builder software provided by many web host to develop your website.

Pros- you can have the look and features of a professionally designed website without the initial development cost or technical skill. Even if you have minimal or no web design skills, you can


have a decent looking website without the steep learning curve. Cons- Some of these systems will not have the flexibility to do exactly what you want on your website. Unless you have the skill to make extensive changes to the templates and theme provided by the service, your website may look a lot like some of the other websites on the service.

Open source software- you're building your website using free or low-cost web building systems like WordPress, Joomla, or Zen Cart.

Pros- Website software like WordPress, Joomla, and Zen Cart is free to install and these programs will help you build a website without having to build individual pages or knowing a lot of HTML. Many of these programs have professionally designed templates and themes that you can use on your website. Since this software runs on your own hosting account, you have total control over how your website runs. Cons- You'll have to install the software yourself. If the hosting service you're using doesn't have an easy install option for the software you want to use, then if you have to install it manually or have someone else do it for you. Some programs like Zen Cart and Joomla, can have a steep learning curve. Plus, you'll be responsible for making sure that your software stays up to date and running.

So what's the best choice? Take in consideration three major points; costs, control, and maintenance for you website and the choices will start making more sense for you.

Need more information on websites, web design, and how to avoid the pitfalls in building and managing your own website? Download a FREE report, "10 Website Mistakes to Avoid" to learn what you need to know to build and run a successful website. Visit Nikolena Designs to get more information.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Nicolette_Tallmadge

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