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Congratulations! You’re well on your way to reaching expert status! We’ve covered the basics of getting online and selecting the right domain name, hosting platform and website-building tools. You know how to drive traffic to your site, use branding to create a memorable online presence, and generate income. Now you’re ready for the big leagues.
So, what’s next? At this point, we encourage you to try writing your own website code, managing your own servers, or becoming a reseller. Once you feel comfortable with code and server management, you can share your expertise.
We understand that these subjects might seem overwhelming at first, but we’ve got your back. We’re here to point you in the right direction and answer your questions if you get stuck.
Coding your website
If you’ve mastered using a template-based site builder or Content Management System (CMS), why not try learning how to code a website? Coding gives you complete control over your site’s design. To learn Web programming and scripting languages, you can use online resources (we recommend W3Schools and DevGuru), tutorial books, or even courses at your local community college.
Coding can be intimidating initially, but it becomes easier once you understand the logic. Don’t be afraid to give it a shot. Everyone has to start with the basics. You can always go back to using a site builder.
Before you jump in, it’s important to understand the different web programming languages available, as well as different scripting languages that provide instructions for either the “client” side (a user’s web browser) or “server” side (the server where your site’s files are stored). In addition, the operating system of your hosting account determines which languages you can use.
The following table includes brief descriptions of and links to more information about the most common languages.
|ASP/ASP.NET||Created by Microsoft®, Active Server Pages (ASP) and ASP.NET are Windows-based, server-side scripting languages that let you build dynamic, interactive websites.|
|CSS||Cascading Style Sheets (CSS) work with HTML (or any markup language) to apply a uniform style and format to your website.|
|HTML||One of the easiest and most popular Web languages, HTML (Hypertext Markup Language) lets you surround text with code tags that indicate how it should display or what purpose it serves on the Web page. For example, you can use HTML to apply fonts to text, display images, or link to other pages.|
|Perl||Practical Extraction and Reporting Language (Perl) is a scripting language that processes text to make it easier to use in reports.|
|PHP||PHP: Hypertext Preprocessor (PHP) is a Linux-based, server-side scripting language that lets you embed dynamic content into HTML Web pages.|
|Python||Python is a Linux-based, object-oriented programming language that lets you create interactive Web pages.|
|Ruby on Rails||Ruby on Rails is an open-source Web framework written in the Ruby scripting language that lets you create database applications.|
|XML||Extensible Markup Language (XML) is similar to HTML, but lets you create unique markup tags. All XML tags are defined by the programmer and different applications might interpret them differently.|
You can also use a MySQL or MS SQL database to help manage data. For example, if your website has a form in which users can submit information, you can store it in a database.
Managing web servers
If you’re comfortable coding, you might be ready to manage web servers. However, we recommend gaining some server administration experience first. You can learn more about server administration at your local community college or by reading software developer documentation, such as the “manual pages” available online.
Web servers are the physical machines that determine the speed, security and scalability of your website. They have the software and networking capability to host your web pages and make them available on the Internet via Hypertext Transfer Protocol (HTTP).
There are many factors you must consider before managing your own web servers, including the operating system, software, the amount of traffic to your site, cost and more. If your website has high traffic or complex applications, you might require the bandwidth, consistent performance and flexibility of a Virtual Private Server (VPS) or Dedicated Server.
Even if you don’t have server administration experience, you can still have a website. Check out our web hosting solutions.
Becoming a reseller
If you love the Internet as much as we do, you might want to consider running your own reseller business.
In other words, resellers sell our domain names, hosting, email and more on their very own web stores. You can run a successful reseller business regardless of whether you can write your own code or manage your own servers. (It doesn’t hurt to know that stuff, though.)
Keep learning and share your expertise
Even if you’ve mastered web code, server administration, and are running a successful reseller business, there’s still infinite room for growth. Why not share your knowledge with others? Build your own blog and write about what you’ve learned. Ask and answer questions. Interact with the online community. Never stop learning.