A WEBSITE, part 8
and maintaining your site
concluding part of this short series looks at the final stages of getting your
web page on the web, and how to get it recognised by the major search engines.
involves copying all of the files that make up your website from your computer
to the server computer that is hosting your site. This relies on a process
known as File Transfer Protocol or ‘FTP’ but don’t let that worry you, the
mechanics of how it is done is much less important these days and in most web
authoring programs it is simply a matter of clicking a button or two.
site has been published it will then be necessary to maintain the site, adding
new material and making changes, and this is going to happen a lot as even the
best web authoring programs do not always show exactly how a web page will
actually look when it goes ‘live’.
pages or page components become dislocated and do not end up in the position
you want them to be but more often than not you will want to change something
simply because it doesn’t look right. Different browsers to the one you are
using can also shift things around or simply refuse to display parts of your
a few things to do before you publish your site and one of the most important
is to thoroughly check that all of the buttons and links are working, so spend
a few minutes clicking around the site in Preview mode.
probably spent several hours looking at your site and inevitably you will miss
or overlook things so it is a good idea to have someone else check it as well.
They are more likely to spot simple errors and spelling mistakes that your
spellchecker missed. If your web authoring program has a spellchecker get into
the habit of using it, and not just on body text, you would be surprised how
many sites have miss spelt buttons and links. It’s usually much easier to put
things right before the site is published.
are ready to publish it is wise to shut down all other programs that use your
Internet connection. Publishing a large site may involve moving several tens of
megabytes of data and anything that interrupts the flow could result in a
failed or corrupt upload.
to use the FTP utility in your web-authoring program you will need the username
and passwords issued to you by your web host, so make sure you have these to
hand. There may also be additional instructions about the naming of files and
folders so familiarise yourself with these beforehand.
the site is uploading leave the PC alone and let it get on with the job, don’t
be surprised if it takes a while, it could be up to half an hour for a large
site with a lot of images.
upload has completed and the site is live check everything again, this time
using your browser and not just with Internet Explorer. If you haven’t already
done do download and install a copy of Firefox as many visitors
to your site will be using it.
alterations to published pages and adding new ones is a lot easier and quicker
since only the changes or additions will need to be uploaded but be careful if
your site is based on templates. Components like buttons may need to be added
separately if they are not contained within the folders of the new pages you
are adding. The same goes for photographs, and if you view a page on your
browser and the picture is missing then it will need to be uploaded into the
your site is live you will want to let the world know all about it. One of the
best ways to do that is to tell the major search engines that your site exists.
Some of them like Google use ‘bots’ that roam the web seeking out new sites and
it may eventually stumble across yours but you can speed the process by
registering your site.
and MSN Search do not charge for this service but others are not so generous
and you may not think it worthwhile to pay to have you site listed by lesser
search engines, unless they are relevant to your site’s contents. Watch out too
for companies that offer to do this for you for a fee. Being listed by Google
and MSN Search costs nothing and gives you the best chance of being found.
submission site and the MSN Search
equivalent both ask you to enter the full URL of your site, along with some
simple keywords that will help people to find your site. Be careful in your
choice of words, the more specialised and relevant to your site they are the
better. You will need to be patient, though, and it can take a week or two for
your site to be listed. Ultimately, however, the key to being recognised on the
web and by search engines is publicity and to have as many links as possible to
your site from other websites. Ask other relevant sites to include links and of
course you should reciprocate with a link to theirs.
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8