Everything you need to know about appearing on the internet
when you don't know where to begin!
All these questions will be answered for you here, hopefully in non geek-speak terms.
What is a website?
Websites are electronic pages linked together on the internet. They can be composed of text, pictures, forms, music, animations and just about anything else that a creative person can craft. A website can consist of one page or hundreds.
Why should I have a web site?
If you have something you want to share with other people, there is no better way to do it than with a website. It is a low-cost way to present yourself and your work to a worldwide audience. Easy to establish, maintain and update, a website is a dynamic display of who you are and what you do. From individuals who are passionate about a favourite hobby, to businesses that want to sell products and services to a worldwide audience, the Web has changed the way we communicate and do business.
In today's market, people are more likely to look for your business on Google than in the Yellow Pages. Internet use and searching is now so common that Google is a recognised verb!
Can you afford to NOT have a website? Click here to learn more about why you NEED a website
What is a domain name?
A domain name is your address on the Internet and like any address, it is important for the success of your business. Promote and protect it so that customers can find you easily. More than this, your domain name is your online identity and brand. The better your domain name, the easier it will be for people to find you. For example, my first domain name was patash.com.au/~pt000005, whereas my present domain name is grahammercer.com.au. Obviously, the current one is easier to remember and looks far more professional. This also allows me to personalise my email addresses, for example firstname.lastname@example.org and email@example.com.
Always remember that when we talk about owning a domain name, we are really talking about renting the exclusive rights to use that name. It is not possible to own a domain name outright, and you will have to pay a periodic renewal fee to keep this right to use. Even if you don't need a web site immediately, but see a future requirement, it is advisable and inexpensive to register a domain name as soon as possible.
If you do not renew a domain name at the end of it's registration period (generally two years) it will again become available for registration by someone else. Just imagine if someone else registers the name you have been using. Although there is a process in place to retrieve these domain names, it can be long, complicated and expensive. It is definitely simpler to spend a little money up front to secure your chosen domain names.
Click for a light-hearted look at the importance of choosing a domain name carefully.
What is hosting?
Hosting refers to the process of storing all of the files that comprise a web site on a specialised computer, called a server, permanently connected to the Internet. If you want to be part of the internet you have to rent hosting space for your files. This enables people to access your website anytime from any computer connected to the internet.
I already have a website so why be part of Potters Online?
Having a website is a great way to present yourself and your work to the wider community, but a website in isolation is not providing you with the full potential for exposure. Much like an isolated shop is disadvantaged, compared to a similar outlet in a shopping centre, inclusion within Potters Online welcomes you into a comprehensive ceramics resource network.
Whether you are an artist wishing to display your work, a supplier trying to reach more customers, a teaching outlet looking for students, a ceramics association or a gallery, you will have greater visibility and more opportunities for your site and your services to be seen when you are part of Potters Online.
If you have further questions, please don't hesitate to contact us.