Today is day two of Views from Sandhausen: Experiences from a Foreign Service Assignment website design. Yesterday, I began trying to understand the elements that I need to research, which include: Hosting, Design Location, Design Execution, Blog, and the Actual Design.
- Hosting is the computer infrastructure where the site will run.
- Design Location is the middle layer, either: Go Daddy – where I have the URL address now, or to another provider.
- Design Execution means:
- Do I use a ‘Professional’ to build the site?
- Use a premium eCommerce sales template?
- Use a free Template (which will not likely give me the Search Engine Optimization (SEO) required to bring enough potential book buyers to the site)?
- Blog Integration means how to link the VFS sales site to the FlaAuthor site.
- The real design is work that I do in my head, and through research of the best examples out on the web, that I can euphemistically ‘steal’ for my site.
Hosting: I have no intention to have a dedicated computer (Server) or very high-speed networking lines running into it. That means you pay someone to ‘serve’ you page to the internet.
Design Location Middle Layer: This means do I use Go Daddy, which ‘holds’ the ViewfromSandhausen.com address itself, but is not very friendly to WordPress, the application that powers the FlaAuthor Blog. It will also power the Views from Sandhausen (sales) site.
Design Execution: I can spell Hyper Text Markup Language (HTML) but it is not one of my strengths. HTML is a semi-visual computer language that the industry uses to commonly to build web sites. If you are ever on a site that gives you a little button that says (View Source), push it. Your screen will change from a nice, readable, understandable page, to a mass of characters that you will recognize but not be able to decipher. That is the HTML mark-up language.
Not needing an unnecessary learning curve, I chose to use a premium template. I am leaning towards a page theme called ‘Thesis’ that comes from DIYThemes.com. It is not too expensive and provides me the latest technology while offering free upgrades forever. I like ‘forever’. This allows the website design to be ‘separated’ from the underlying code (HTML). I can pick from buttons and drag and drop elements into a page framework, to make up the website.
Blog Integration: As WordPress also provides hosting as part of their line of business, I will host the sales site there. That makes the process of integration with the blog quite easy. I expect putting the blog on the Views from Sandhausen site itself, eventually.
Actual Design: I have collected examples of good ‘author’ sites, good eCommerce sites, and sites that will look modern as time passes. I have chosen a three-column design that has the ability to put the photographs that are in the book itself, up on the site. This should make for something interesting and attractive for the visitors, and pique their interest.
Therefore, another Sunday fades into the rear view mirror. Sundays are very difficult for me as Lynn died on a Sunday, 22 short weeks ago. I am still in a lot of pain: Thank God for this project!