Creating your own site from scratch

No matter what stage of your career you’re at, it’s never too early or too late to build your own site.

As well as giving you first hand experience with the basics of front-end, it’s also a great way to show off any skills you have and a fun way to tell the world about yourself.

Gone are the days of super-glossy embossed business cards. Your personal website it your calling card, a glimpse of who you are and what makes you tick.

This tutorial asumes you already know the basics of HTML and CSS. If not, there are loads of great resources out there to help you learn, and most are free. I partcicularly recommend Treehouse because their videos are superb and easy to follow (they’re a subscription service). If you’re watching the pennies, Codecademy is free!

Get the basics

Get a text editor

Sublime is available to trial but my new favourite is Atom because it’s 100% free and it’s open sourced, meaning there are loads of add-ons you can download for free to help you write better code.

Purchase your domain and hosting

I already use Godaddy for TheNextStep so I decided to stick with them for convenience, out of laziness. You may be able to get better deals out there if you shop around. They charged me about for $24 for a year for domain registration for a year, plus an ongoing charge of around $7 per month for hosting. I consider it an investment in myself, so I happily part with the cash.

Get an FTP client

FTP is file transfer protocol. It basically allows you to transfer files from your own computer to your hosting servers. I chose FileZilla.

Your FTP hostname, username and password — this is set-up with cpanel when hosting is purchased through Godaddy

Find out which hosting type you have

You need to know your hosting type. This tutorial is based on cPanel, as this is what I’m using but you may have something else like Plesk etc.

Get down to work

Link FileZilla to your Godaddy hosting account

In the host field, enter the IP address for your website. You can find this on the left-hand side as soon as you login to cPanel. Enter the username and password you created when setting up the hosting account. This may or may not be the same as your login details for your GoDaddy accunt. Under port number, enter 21. Hit the ‘Quickconnect’ button.

FileZilla will ask you if you want to remember the password — you can select according to your preference.

Upload your files

There are 2 main windows in filezilla — the left shows you all the files you have stored locally, on your own computer. The right shows all files you have on your hosted server.

Open the public html folder in the right-hand window. Drag the local files where your site is stored and drop them into the public html folder. It can takes a few seconds to a few minutes for the files to be copied, depending on how big your project is.

As soon as this is done, head to your website address in your browser and you should be able to see your site live!

You can find the site I based this tutorial on here: http://marilyn-magnusen.com

Let me know if you have any feedback or questions!