Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions

The F.A.Q.’s below are a list of questions I get asked about on a regular basis by clients or are things that are handy for someone starting a new website to know. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact me. 

A domain name is your website address, also known as a URL (uniform resource locator). For example, mine is www.scullywag.com.

Learn more: How to buy a domain name (do’s and don’ts)

  • Short and memorable works best.
  • Numbers and hyphens can make it confusing for people to remember.
  • If you have a business name already, it makes sense to use that or a variation of it.
  • You can use your own name, and craft a personal brand that way.
  • You could incorporate your business or industry keywords into a domain name.
  • You could come up with a brand name unique to you.
  • Be careful of infringing on other brands, copyrights and trademarks.

Learn more: How to buy a domain name (do’s and don’ts)

  • Be careful where you search for domain name availability. Some unscrupulous domain name resellers have been said to automatically register a domain name after you search for it. The idea is that you will then be prepared to pay them a substantial amount to have them sell it to you.
  • Sometimes companies will offer you a free domain name when you sign up for other services. You need to make sure that your name is listed as the registrant ( you may wish to have them listed as the admin or technical contact). If you are not listed as the registrant, you have no proof that the domain belongs to you.
  • I recommend NameCheap for domain names.

Learn more: How to buy a domain name (do’s and don’ts)

  • First you need to decide what to call your domain name.
  • You will want to make sure you are not infringing on someone else’s brand, copyright or trademarks.
  • Do a search to see if the domain name is available.
  • Be aware that some unscrupulous domain name registrars sometimes purchase the domain name after you have searched for it, so they can charge you more for it later on.
  • Purchase the domain name (you do not usually need to buy multiple versions of it).
  • Make sure that you verify the email address you used to purchase the domain name within 15 days.
  • If you do not verify your email address, the domain name will be suspended until you do.
  • You can expect to pay around $15/year USD for a domain name (your initial purchase may be cheaper).
  • Domain names have yearly fees, although many companies will give you a discount for buying 2 or more years at a time.
  • I recommend NameCheap for domain names.

Learn more: How to buy a domain name (do’s and don’ts)

  • If you are self-hosted through a website hosting company, then free domain name email accounts are usually included.
  • If you intend to host your domain through Wix.com, WordPress.com, SquareSpace or Shopify then email accounts are not included in your hosting.
  • The above listed companies resell Google’s G Suite that provides professional email, online storage, and more for about $5 USD/month per email account
  • I’m also a G Suite reseller and if you contact me I can send you a code that will get you 20% off your first year for either the basic or business plan. 
  • Some people decide to go with Google G Suite for email even if they are self-hosted and have access to free email accounts. G Suite allows you to use Gmail, as well as Google Calendar, Drive, Docs and other tools that allow you to get things done from any location, on any device.
  • Most website hosting companies allow you to automatically forward your domain name emails to your nominated email account if you wish (the emails will be in both email accounts).

If you think about your website being the online version of your shop or office, then website hosting is the online rent that you pay to have your shop or office online. 

For small businesses there are two main categories of website hosting that are available.

  • Self-hosted 

When you purchase website hosting through a website hosting company, it is referred to as self-hosted.

The main advantages of this is that it is usually cheaper than going through a company that specialised in just their web building software. You have more freedom to do what you want with your website (within reason) and more options about how you will build your website (HTML, WordPress,  Joomla, Weebly etc).

Website hosting prices start from about $5/month USD billed yearly, for an account suitable for up to 10,000 website visitors a month. I use and recommend SiteGround for website hosting and use WordPress for website builds.

  • Hosting through specific web building platform

When you buy website hosting through a specific web building platform, you are paying to use their software on their web hosting. Whereas when you are self-hosted you have some choice in what software or code you will use to build your website, with these companies, you can only use their software on their website hosting. Wix, SquareSpace, and Shopify are examples of hosting through a specific web building platform.

WordPress.com – has a Premium Plan for $8/month  USD billed yearly, that allows you to accept simple payments (a PayPal button) or the more advanced E-Commerce Plan for $45 USD/month billed yearly

Note: WordPress is both a free software (which can be used on a self-hosted website) and a company that has free and paid website hosting plans using the WordPress software. 

Wix – has a Business Basic plan for $18/month USD billed yearly, that allows you to accept online payments. 

SquareSpace – has a Business Plan for $18/month USD billed yearly, which will allow you to sell an unlimited amount of items and accept donations.

Shopify – has a Basic Shopify plan for $29/month USD which will also allow you to sell an unlimited amount of items, and includes such features as abandoned cart technology.

They also have a $9/month USD plan for those that want to use Shopify only on their Facebook page.

There are many different types of websites you might want to use for your business. 

There are brochure websites that are mainly there to give you an internet presence and provide basic details about your business and contact details. 

There are e-commerce websites that allow you to sell your products or services on your website. 

There are websites that feature regular content (blogging) that draw people back to your website over and over again. 

Landing pages can be particularly useful for showcasing a particular product or sale. Many ads on social media will lead to a landing page. While there are many companies that allow you to create a landing page for a price, there is nothing to stop you setting up your own landing pages on a website. 

Forums are popular with some people, as it gives a community a place to connect and voice their opinions. 

What sort of website you choose will depend on the individual needs of your business. 

It is not unusual to have a e-commerce website that also includes regular content. Website visitors may visit to read an article and end up exploring the website and signing up for an email newsletter, trial product or purchasing items from the website. 

To be taken seriously you need to have your contact details on your website. If you were looking at a business website online, and there were no contact details, would you trust them?

At a minimum, your “privacy policy” and “terms and conditions” pages should have these details displayed on them. Having your contact details easily found on your website (such as in a footer or sidebar) shows that you are transparent about who and what you are as a business.

If you have an email newsletter, it is also a requirement that you display your contact details in every email sent.

A lot of people feel anxious about writing their “About Me” or “About Us” page. 

The type of business you are and what type of tone you want to convey will factor into how you write about yourself, and your business. 

Having said that, a little personality always helps. Nobody expects a laugh a minute read, but they should come away feeling they know a little bit more about you, or your company. 

If you have relevant credentials or qualifications then this can be a good area to  mention or display them. A photo of you also helps website visitors put a face to your internet “voice”. 

When there is a team behind the business, giving a brief bio of each can be also helpful. You may may prefer to have them featured more prominently in an “Our Team” area specifically and leave the “About Us” section to focus on the business values, history and community involvement.

If you are taking personal information from website visitors then you need to provide a Privacy Policy. 

Your Privacy Policy should note how your website gathers, uses, discloses, and manages a customer or client’s personal data.

Privacy Policies have become a standard website page these days. Even if you do not collect personal data from your website visitors, a page stating that you do not do this is recommended. The lack of a Privacy Page is likely to cause some people to wonder if you did not include it for some nefarious reason or that you are not keeping up with required legislation.  

There are many websites, as well as WordPress software itself that can help you with what you need to write when it comes to your Privacy Policy. Depending on the complexity of your business, you may opt to seek legal help when it comes to formulating yours. 

While maybe not as essential as the Privacy Policy, a Terms and Conditions page is a good idea for most websites. It is also required when dealing with some third-party companies such as Amazon if you are one of their affiliates. 

A Terms and Conditions page will specify the guidelines for use of your website as well as what behaviour will not be tolerated from website visitors.

As with Privacy Policies, there are websites on the internet that will help you format a Terms and Conditions page for your needs for free. Depending on the complexity of your business, you may opt to seek legal help when it comes to formulating yours. 

When it comes to taking photos for your website, the bigger the better. Photos can always be cropped down, resized and compressed, but working with the highest quality photo to start with helps. 

Be mindful of lighting where you can, and that the pictures you take do not have background distractions drawing the viewers eye away from the main focus.

When it comes to taking photos of your products, there are many photo box lighting kits available from Amazon and similar places you might try.

Alternatively, creating a backdrop yourself and making sure that you get wide enough pics so that you can crop down to the size you want is another idea. There are many websites that will give you suggestions on how to get the best out of your photos for your website

Please be aware that you cannot just take any picture you see online and use it on your social media or your website. You can face significant fines if you are found in breach of copyright law.

There are several websites that offer photos that you can use for free for either personal or commercial use and some of these allow you to modify the pictures if you chose to.

Even if you do a google search and the photo says royalty free, that does not necessarily give you permission to use it on a commercial website or on social media.

Some popular websites you can use:

Pixabay

Pexels

Unsplash

If you are selling products or services, then writing articles that are of interest and of value to your current or potential client base is helpful as it may draw them to your website.

While they may not be in a position to buy at that time; you are establishing yourself as a authority or source of information, and you are likely to be in their mind when it comes time for them to purchase.  

Writing content for the web and promoting it on social media channels helps to increase brand recognition, and fosters a sense of community.

It is said that it takes up to 7 times within an 18 month period for your brand to be seen and connected with, before it becomes trusted enough in the minds of clients for them to buy (known as the Rule of 7 by Dr. Jeffrey Lant).

Google tends to reward websites that publish new and updated content as well. 

If you are using WooCommerce and opting to accept payments via PayPal you will need to access your PayPal credentials

Firstly, you will need a PayPal business account. If you do not have a PayPal business account – you can find out how to do that here. 

Next we need to get the Live API username and Live API password from your PayPal account.

  • Log into PayPal
  • Click the cog icon at the top of your PayPal account page and then click on Profile and settings.

 

 

 

  • Alternatively it may just take you straight to your My Profile page. 
  • Click on Selling Tools 

 

 

  • Find where it says API Access and click the link that says “update

 

 

  • Scroll down to where it says NVP/SOAP API integration (Classic)

 

 

  • Click on Manage API credentials
  • If you have previously set up your credentials you will be able to view them and delete them if you wish. 
  • If you have not taken this step before, follow the instructions and you will end up with this screen.

 

 

Click the show links to get the API username and password. 

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