The first thing you’ll need to do is select a name for your website. Make it unique to your brand, easy to remember and spell, and not too lengthy. You will have to pay for the ownership of your website’s name, but most domains only cost around $10–$20 per year to maintain. Shop around for a registrar that sounds good to you. BlueHost, GoDaddy, and HostGator are all highly rated.
If you’re not familiar with coding, and don’t have the time and resources to learn, building a website through an open source content management system (CMS) might be the more sensible option. Unlike a website builder, an open source CMS allows you to totally customize your website.
Open source software CMS
The most common open source CMS used for building a website is WordPress. In fact, over 40% of all websites are run by WordPress.1 You can either access this software through your web host, or by downloading and installing it on your personal computer. The CMS itself is very robust, so you may want to dedicate some time to a WordPress tutorial—especially if this is your first time using the software.
Another popular CMS is Webflow. Like WordPress, Webflow is an open source software that allows for total customization. Webflow is also known for having better web design customization, rather than relying on pre-made templates.
Templates and themes
Once you’ve become familiar with WordPress, you’ll need to choose a theme. The theme of your website is the overall look and feel, so it’s important to be selective and choose one that resonates with your brand.
You can create and upload your own template to WordPress, or choose from millions of templates available online. If you choose a WordPress theme, you will be able to totally customize the appearance—colors, fonts, photos, logos, etc.
If customizing your web design (even in an easy-to-use template) sounds a little daunting, you might want to hire a freelance web designer to create a custom template for your website.
Hiring a developer
If all of this still sounds overwhelming, but you still don’t want to use a website builder, you always have the option of hiring a professional freelance web developer to build a website for you. Freelancers may charge an hourly rate or fixed rate, and costs can run anywhere from $500 to $3,000. If you have the means, this route may be worth it in the long run since you’ll be saving time, and receiving a high-quality product.