Many people have been emailing me asking about money making opportunities that actually work. People are tired of being scammed or convinced to purchase a product that simply does nothing for them.
My last several posts have focused on Mark Warrenâ€™s Websites and as I mentioned in my last post at least 35,000 people have been paying $9.00 a month for one of his prefab websites. They take a look at his demo or â€œfree websiteâ€ and think that if they purchase the product they will make some good passive income.
Part of the reason why people go with Mark warrrenâ€™s websites as opposed to making their own is simply because they believe him that its just to expensive and difficult to make your own. While it is time consuming and can be difficult to build a decent website or blog, it certainly isnâ€™t expensive.
On markwarrenwebsites.com he lists the costs associated with building your own money making site. He gives these numbers:
A turn-key affiliate website worth $1097
User control panel to edit your website worth $3000
Website installation worth $300
Before I discuss the turnkey affiliate website and its value, I want to mention that the other two items on the list donâ€™t cost you a dime when you sign up with ANY hosting provider.
Three thousand dollars for a control panel to edit your site?? What a lie!! Every single web hosting company in the world provides a control panel for you to edit and monitor your site as part of your hosting plan.
Web installation at $300? Well this would be true if someone actually installed a website for you. Mark Warren websites are generic templates that his team created and its all in one file thatâ€™s simply uploaded to your hosting server. This still may sound appealing to people but you need to remember that no one will ever see your site if its identical to 35,000 other sites. Also, most people building their own small sites do the installation themselves. All it takes is uploading a few files to your hosting server. The $3000 and $300 were obviously part of his overall marketing gimmick.
Many web hosting companies provide a simple website creation tool that allows you to build your own site. Some people use Microsoft Frontpage to build a website as well. Another option would be to download a free open-source website creation tool. I use KompoZer for some help in my web designs. Itâ€™s a free program that works just as well as Front Page and many people even like it better.
Also, you donâ€™t have to build a site from scratch. I didnâ€™t. There are many places online that provide simple yet free website templates. If you look at the bottom of my blog you will see that my design was created by Andreas Viklund. His website offers great designs for both websites and blogs and best of all they’re free. Remember, mark warren websites arenâ€™t sophisticated at all. They contain just one page with very little content.
Whether or not you decide to use a Mark Warren website you are going to have to register your own domain name regardless. Most hosting providers offer free domain name registration when you sign up with their hosting plans. Another benefit to building your own website and not relying on one of Markâ€™s is that with an original website containing some useful content you could get your very own Google adsense code.
So how do I build my own simple website?
1. Decide on a name for your website or blog. For this step you could go to godaddy.com as they provide variations of names that have alredy been taken in case the name you want isnâ€™t available. Once you find a name thatâ€™s available register it with the hosting provider of your choice.
2. Choose your own hosting provider that offers domain name registration included in the hosting plan. A good place to research hosting providers is webhostingjury.com. The reviews on the website are from the customers and they currently have reviews on over 500 hosting companies. Mark Warren uses dot5hosting for his own personal websites (not midphase) while I am currently using Servage.net.
3. Now that you have a domain name and hosting plan youâ€™ll need a website template. Besides the work youâ€™ll put in to create the content on your site, customizing your website template to your liking may require the most work.
As I mentioned above, there are many places to get a free template. If you want to build a relatively simple website then youâ€™ll only need a simple template. AndreasViklund.com has nice assortment of free templates for either blogs or websites. You should also check out Opendesigns.org for hundreds of really cool and free website templates. These web templates are all open source projects hence they are free. In fact, WordPress, the blogging software that I am using, is also opensource and free. Itâ€™s amazing, when you think about the thousands of dollars that Mark Warren has people believe that they would need to pay to get a website on the web when in reality one could get everything except for the hosting free.
4. Once youâ€™ve decided on a template and downloaded it to your computer youâ€™ll need to customize it. For customizing and/or building websites the best free software out there (as far as I know) is KompoZer. Also an open-source product. Once youâ€™ve downloaded and installed KompoZer you are ready to customize your template.
So how do we do this exactly?
Good question. If you are not planning on building a crazy 30 page or more website selling all sorts of products with a built in shopping cart application and whatever else youâ€™ll find on high end sites, then you should be fine. Remember, you want to build something simple.
Before I begin, I want people to know that I am being extremely basic here. I donâ€™t want people commenting about how I failed to explain how to add images, links, descriptions, or whatever. Customizing a site requires work and tons of trial and error. Adding affiliate links and Google adsense codes takes time to get it right. For specifics, the best thing is to do a Google search on how to modify or add to a specific part of your website.
Customizing your website
The key file for the homepage of your website is the index.html file and its this file that you would want to edit with your web editor tool. The best way to explain how to modify and upload a webpage to your website is to show how its done step by step. For this exercise, Iâ€™ve downloaded a fairly simple yet nice looking web template from Andreasviklund.com.
1. Open your KompoZer application and click on the index file for the website template youâ€™ve downloaded. With the 1024px template you should see this in your KompoZer window (click on screenshot for larger image):
2. Edit any component of the page by replacing any text or image with your own:
3. Before we make any changes to other pages of the website, letâ€™s make sure we are happy with the index file. Suppose you want to add a â€œMoviesâ€ page under â€œDownloadsâ€ in your sidebar. For this step do the following:
1. Hit enter right after â€œPicturesâ€ and type the word â€œMoviesâ€. Notice how the word â€œMoviesâ€ is smaller than â€œPicturesâ€ this is because you havenâ€™t created a link for it yet.
2. Highlight the word â€œMoviesâ€ and click on the link button on the toolbar at the top of the page.
3. Enter a name for your link and click on the â€˜Okâ€™ button. In the example I named the link â€œmovies.htmlâ€ since this will link to a movies page once Iâ€™ve created one. Iâ€™ll explain that in more detail below. The text should now be larger and underlined.
4. Once you have the page the way you like it save it as your index.html file. You now have your home page and the template for your website is complete.
5. To create additional web pages open your index file again and modify the text to reflect the next page of your website. In my example, I customized the â€˜Downloadsâ€™ page that exists on the sidebar and saved it as downloads.html. Also, make sure your â€˜Downloadsâ€™ link on your sidebar for both your index.html page and your downloads.html page link appropriately as described in step 3. Now I should have two html files for this style website in my folder: index.html and downloads.html.
â€œInstallingâ€ or Uploading your website
Once you have your website the way you like it you can upload it to your web host. There are many different programs for uploading websites to your webhosts server. Like many web editing programs, KompoZer has a built feature to upload your completed website. For me, the easiest way to upload my website is to simply copy and paste the contents of my website’s folder on my computer to my webhost’s server folder. Hereâ€™s how:
1. Open the folder containing all your content for your website and copy all the files:
2. Now make sure that you have an address bar on the toolbar at the top of your folder and type in the link for your FTP server. It should be something like this: ftp://ftp.example.com/www where â€˜exampleâ€™ is to be replaced by the name of your hosting company.
3. If youâ€™re using Windows XP, a log on screen should pop up asking for your logon information. Enter your username and password and click on the â€˜Log Onâ€™ button.
4.Once you logged on, simply paste your contents to your ftp folder and your done.
5. Go to your web browser and type in the URL of your website. You new website should appear.
For the purpose of this exercise, Iâ€™ve uploaded a semi functional demo site. There are only three working pages (main page (index.html), downloads.html, and movies.html) to give you an idea of how your site should look if youâ€™ve followed the steps above.
Please post a comment if you have any questions. The above steps should also help for people who have already purchased a useless mark warren website and want to modify it to include original content and an original template.