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website help

~Hello
So I am a textile artist catering primarily to the furry/anime communities - most of what I make are tails, ears, plushies, ect. I have had my business up and running for about a year now; I mostly take commissions but am interested in selling premades as well. I do table at conventions, however two or three cons a year doesn't cut it bill wise. I've been looking into starting a website I can sell premades through, however I'm not sure where to begin. I'd rather not start an etsy/storeenvy/ect but have my site be it's own source. So...any tips from those out there familiar with web design? I'm not super technologically skilled (read: I can't code my own stuff) however I can follow a template. I'd be fine with a website builder, I'd just like opinions as to which ones are worth the time and which ones aren't.
Thanks~
 

Straw

Hobby Artist
I've made some wordpress sites as a hobby, including my own (which I have to update soon) so I can shed some light here (in a nut shell)

If you want to have your own personal maintainable website, a good place to start is using Wordpress and BlueHost. Wordpress is great cause you can install plugins to suit your needs without having to write a single line of code. (But if you want you can code too). The way you do it is you first get a domain name and a host.

The domain name is the URL of your site and is separate from your host. The host is the storage server where your site content is located and accessed. The domain simply points to this server on the internet. I'm saying this cause it's very easy to confuzzle the two and end up wasting time figuring out whats what.

It is possible to buy a domain from a different service than your host provider. I'm pointing this out since it is actually possible to have multiple domain names pointing to the same host or different parts of a host site.

Once you have a domain and host, you can begin developing your site on the host server. This is where you can install wordpress; Bluehost as an example has a service that automatically installs it for your on demand but if you decide to use a host that doesn't, Wordpress allows you to do a manual installation.

Once wordpress is installed and activated, you should be provided with login details such that you can access the wordpress control panel of your site. From there on in, you get to customise your site to your liking, even install themes and plugins as well as populate it's content on the fly. If you want google adsense advertising, you will need to have an already populated site with enough content to be deemed profitable advertising wise, so apply after a couple of months of getting your site up to speed.

I'll point out in advance for your sake that Wordpress has several plugins for merchandising and servicing that fits your bill, so it should be perfect for your needs.

Hope this helps!
 
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