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How to create a website in 2 weeks and $250?

I created my website literally in 2 weeks and for $250.  This, of course, was after I decided on my brand, what differentiated me and what services I was going to offer.  The website was just the execution part of the process. Yes, it is possible to create a professional website and here is the proof.

Here are the 6 steps I took to create my website:

1)I decided what I needed in a site. I wanted something professional, yet easy to update myself.  NOTE: I am not a designer or a coder.  I needed a way to communicate with my audience, so I wanted a blog component. I wanted it to be “socially” integrated.  I needed to have a place to put my portfolio of work and a way for people to contact me.  Decide what you need your site to do first.

2)Then I researched hosting companies, prices and packages. Even though I am not fond of the commercials and branding for Go Daddy, their services and packages were the right choice for me.  Plus, they always have promotions and you can google online codes for more discounts. I got the 3 year package with email address and wordpress integration–all for about $5 a month.  Not bad…Plus, you can actually talk to a real person if you have an issue.

3)Next, visuals, as I mentioned I am not a graphic designer, but like all of us, we get by with a little help from our friends, right? I asked a friend to help me design a logo and pick colors.  She gave me the friends and family rate and whipped it out in about a week. I downloaded some free graphics for the rest.

4)Copy writing.  I drafted my static web copy and had a friend review and help me edit.

5)Site set up is next.  I am familiar with WordPress because I have been co-write a gardening blog, You Should Grow That, for a couple of years now, so it was fairly simple to input my website copy and visuals. Once you have chosen a template, the rest is data entry.  Sure there were some glitches along the way, but I visited some online forums, used “Firebug” to make some hand-codded changes until I created the site and functionality I wanted.

6)Then I added my video a friend help me write, produce and edit.

Voila.  My website was born in 2 weeks, $250 and some help from my friends.  When I tell people this, they are so surprised.  In the end, the hardest part.—was making myself do it.  Scheduling time to spend on creating it.  So, no more excuses…even if you just want a professional site to display your portfolio or resume. Schedule some time, invest a little money and ask your friends to help. Then publish and publicize.

About the author

Melissa Kennedy

I am an innovative, practical problem-solver with an MBA. Pioneered one of the first social media strategic plans for a Fortune 100 company, including monthly online TV program viewed by 120,000 customers. Created a scalable channel marketing service model and established a new customer communication channel through partner web syndication. Developed marketing plan for start-up technology firm. Launched first comprehensive marketing campaign for major science and technology university's $1 Billion fund-raising effort. Award-winning performance for 15 years across functions, industries and organizations.

My passion for results goes beyond professional pursuits. I am a global facilitator and co-organizer of Startup Weekends and serve as an advocate and volunteer for many local charities including Food Bank of Central/Eastern NC, North Carolina International Affairs Council and Connected Women of North Carolina. Plus, I have served as the President for the Triangle Interactive Marketing Association,

4 comments

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  1. Ron

    Quite an accomplishment, great work. But wait, I think I see the flames of torches as web developers march toward your home! Run for your life!

    1. Melissa Kennedy

      Hahaha…Ron, you are funny. Well, I guess I believe that having a website is easy, it is what you do with it and how you market it is where it is gets difficult and where you should invest your marketing dollars.
      BTW–i did just get some new running shoes. Now is a probably a good time to break them in 😉
      m

  2. christine ramsey

    Great job, great logo and great insight. Too many people put up a site and then can’t make updates. Bad move. Websites have to be flexible. Good job on yours. I enjoy and learn from your posts.

    1. Melissa Kennedy

      Sustainability is the key these days. Thanks for the feedback!

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