I Need Your Opinion
Oh yes, I’ve been absent from here for awhile — but that doesn’t mean I haven’t been busy.
Although I’ve really enjoyed blogging for free on WordPress.com, I realized that my glass business needed a more professional site — one that allows for a store, PayPal payments, a quick view of what I offer, & most especially, a site where the blah, blah, blah of my blog is not a mandatory read but a choice.
Of course, going ‘professional’ costs a few $$ but maybe not as much as you think. At about $10 per year, the first step was registering a domain name: dawnedesign.net — which I did a few years ago [2? 3?].
At that time, I simply made a graphic in Photoshop that acted as an index [in tech-talk a 'static landing page'] pointing to my free Dawne Design & Dawne Thoughts blogs, as well as what I was hoping would be my sales site — Rustic Glass Fusion.
But whoa, that site didn’t tie into my glass blog & it was a real pain trying to keep it up-to-date. Why was I doing this the hard way?
So, I took the big step of purchasing my own hosting account. I looked at a few hosting companies but that can be a confusing world for the newbie site builder — how do I choose?
Since I really love WordPress, my biggest priority was ensuring my host allowed WordPress.org installation & that they kept up-to-date with the latest version. Most do, but how easy was the process? Some have great tools to help with this; some do not.
Since I’d registered my domain name at netfirms.com, I found their prices quite reasonable & they promised ‘one-button installation’ for WordPress. Again, to keep things easier for me, I decided to keep everything with the same company.
Now at $5 per month, netfirms.com’s ‘Plus’ plan is pretty reasonable — the problem is you need to pay for at least a year up front. So, my birthday present to myself this year was forking out $60 to cover my first year. Easy, peasy & then I was set!
This is where WordPress.org comes in — the same ease at creating a site as WordPress.com but with much greater flexibility to make it uniquely mine. Of course, this also means a bit of learning for me but netfirms.com‘s tools make even that a lot easier:
- installation really does happen with the click of one button;
- their Knowledgebase provides detailed instructions & video tutorials to help with every aspect of managing my new site;
- support includes an easy-to-use 24/7 text chat with technical specialists — I used it twice & found it quick, friendly, & most importantly, easy to understand instructions
- [support also includes telephone access but I haven't found the need to use that yet].
Although there’s tons of WordPress ‘themes’ you could pay for, there’s even more freebies — I found everything I need in the Responsive theme.
You can check out the full page at dawnedesign.net
It’s pretty simple right now but, oh yeah, I have lots of plans … like tutorials, store, PayPal payments, slide shows, …
Here is where you’ll find my glass work — panels, windows, shutters, headboard, garden planters, lamps, … you name it, I’ll try it.
Best of all, my Dawne Design blog is separated off from the ‘business’ section — on its own tab on the top menu or it can be reached directly at dawnedesign.net/blog
I invite you all to sign-up for future posts about making glass projects & what I do with them around my home — top right on blog page.
Another bonus is a sub-menu with tabs to all my other blogs: Dawne Thoughts with my thoughts on everyday life; Dawne Enlightened where I deal with mental illness; & my new GrandLUV.net about the joys & concerns of the modern grandparent. There’s also a choice to come here for the old Dawne Design blog — at some point I will move these old posts to the new blog, … later.
So, after all that blah, blah, I’d like to ask your opinion of the new dawnedesign.net — good, bad, or neutral. I’d like to hear it all, please. Please leave a comment [viewable by all] or, if you prefer, check out my Contact page where you can fill out the form & send a private message to me.
Thanks so much — I appreciate all your comments.
Functional glass & wood art on Vancouver Isle