Folksy Ltd

Creating your own website

(Hollie Eccles) #1

Hi all,

I’ve been putting off creating my own website for ages but have finally decided to take the plunge and buy a domain name and create a site complete with a shop checkout.

I’ve briefly had a look at Weebly and Shopify but I’m a little lost on what to choose so if anyone can offer any advice or has any recommendations that would be fantastic.

Thank you!

Hollie xx

(Julia K Walton) #2

Hi Hollie

I have a free website http://www.firehorsetextiles.com/ on Weebly and found it very easy to set up - you just drag and drop things (like a gallery option) onto your pages.

I don’t have any e-commerce shop on there, just links to my Folksy shop etc, but you can add those later if you are willing to pay for them.

I haven’t tried Shopify, so will be interested to hear from anyone who has.

Good luck! :smile:

1 Like
(Roz) #3

I had a free website on Wix which was really simple to set up and I just linked everything through my Folksy shop to avoid having to pay for an e commerce site. Trouble is it was so much effort to keep it up to date and try and get the SEO sorted that in the end I gave up with it and deleted it when I changed my shop name - just not enough hours in the day to do everything! Might start again when I give up the day job!

1 Like
(LucyWithDiamonds) #4

I use Create.com and find they’re online presence when I need help and their forums extremely helpful. I’m a big fan actually. They do a trial too so you can see if you get on with it and if it’s suitable for you and your needs. If you want to look at my page I can message you the link (not sure if folksy like us to direct you away from here!) xx

2 Likes
(TandMArtsandCrafts) #5

I use create too. In fact between me and my husband we have 4!!
I have just started another one this week for my new dog walking business, Mark has one dedicated to his artwork (which to be honest he never has time to do anything on it and wont let me help, cos he wants to do it! Needs a kick up the bum, typical artist just wants to paint all the time!!). And I set up one in November dedicated for my jewellery. Then my oldest one I have had for 6 years, same name as my Folksy shop, so you can look for it if you like.

You can get one done in a day, once you get the hang of how to do it and it really is very simple once you get into it.

I did do a free one with Wix this week for the new business but as it primarily is an advertising portal for them unless you pay, your website address will have their name in it and not be a .co.uk or .com until you pay. I considered paying so that I could have .co.uk but was a little wary I was going to end up paying for stuff I didn’t ask for - they are American and I just wasn’t confident, so decided to stick to create.

I pay £6 a month for a basic site (no shop) or for my other websites which do have shops I pay £11 per month, this is adequate as you can do option boxes on each listing, so if you have an item which they can have in different colours or shapes its a good way not to use up all your listings (you are allowed 400). You then have to pay £10.55 for a .co.uk domain name for 2 years.

Its really easy to pop on and change a word that you might of spelt wrong and then republish. Its good to republish often to keep your website up to date, google like that.

On your home page make sure in the first paragraph you tell people what you do, google like that too. And highlight that as H1, second paragraph H2 (you’ll understand that when you fill in your text) its basically pinpointing what you want people to find and letting google know that’s important. Just highlight it and click H1 or H2, simple’s.

Create are great for their customer service, I often email them to ask them how to do something, they usually answer within a day or two and often will direct you to a forum page which has covered your issue and will have step by step directions, which I have never had a problem with and manage to get done what I need to.

Get your SEO words right for what you are selling and change them often, as that will keep it refreshing.

However what you have to remember that it is not just a case of putting on a website and hoping people are going to find it!

You will need to link it into your social media pages, put links on and its a good idea to get it listed on as many directories as you possibly can bear, with backlinks - bit of a chore, but it will all help with your google rankings. Start with the easy ones like Yell and Yelp (they will call to try and get you to pay for an upgrade - ALL the time - which after a lot of woffle will eventually come out as £170!! just keep saying no. Then Google free business listings and a whole load will come up. Ignore all the emails you will get about companies being able to put you at the top of a google search page, they are just money spinners for those companies, after all if everyone paid, we couldn’t all be at the top!!, just work your website right and you will be found. Do a google business listing too.

Dont expect to get business straight away, it can take google search engines 3-6 months to really find you and start listing you where people will see you, so be patient. But this is a good thing as it means you have a while to really get it right.

Apologies this may of put you off even more, but honestly once you get the hang of it, its not that bad and can be very rewarding once you get going. I’m always happy to answer any questions.

2 Likes
(Annmarie Ison) #6

I have used moon fruit and have a e-commerce shop as it is better for the customer to buy direct from me instead of getting directed to another shop to pay for goods. I have found this really easy to use and when I have encountered difficulty the support has been excellent. The website also has a blog function which I find useful having everything under the same umbrella. It does take a lot of work though to get it in the public eye.

Good luck with whatever you decide to do.

1 Like
(Jennifer Combes) #7

Hi

My first website was via shopify and my updated on is a wordpress.

Wordpress is much easier to use in my experience unless you want to set up at big e store. I link my website to both my E shop and Folksy shop so I don;t need to bother with an e store. Just easier for me.

Blu Chic have lovely designs and for a little extra they will set it up to look just like their demo site.

Here is my website I made via their template:

www.talkofthetownparties.co.uk

This way you just pay for a hosting account and the initial set up cost which makes it cheaper and easier :slight_smile: I host through Tsohost .

Hope this helps a little :slight_smile:

1 Like
(Hollie Eccles) #8

Hi Julia @FireHorseTextiles

Thanks for your help - yes, I’ve heard Weebly is easy to use and it looks clean, crisp and professional. I would like a shop checkout feature and I see this is a little more per month but you can have a play around before you commit so I’ll have a go. :slightly_smiling:

(Hollie Eccles) #9

I know the feeling Roz @OrchardFelts, I always seem to have an infinite list of jobs to do which never seems to get any smaller. Good job I love what I do thought :slight_smile:

(Hollie Eccles) #10

Thanks @LucyWithDiamonds I’ve found your site and it looks great! I love your engagement rings - so much sparkle! I’ll check out Create and have a play, thanks for the tip xx

1 Like
(Hollie Eccles) #11

Wow @TandMArtsandCrafts thank you so much for taking the time to be so thorough. I really appreciate the help and hadn’t considered most of the things you mentioned.

Yes - I know that it will take time to get traffic to my site but people keep asking me if I have a website so I know it is something I need to do. The folksy shop is great but I really need somewhere so show pictures of me in the workshop, photos of bespoke pieces and commisions and more about the heart of my company, not just somewhere you can buy. I do want to include a checkout though and I know this is extra but hopefully it will be a good investment in the long run!

Great tip about the H1 and H2 and listing in directories. Thanks so much! Hollie x

1 Like
(Hollie Eccles) #12

@talkofthetownparties your website looks fantastic and so professional.

Sorry to be a little slow but did you build the site through workpress and purchase a template from bluchic?

Thank you! xx

1 Like
(Jennifer Combes) #13

Hi

So I bought the template first and got them to build the demo for me and then added in wordpress plugins from there…it was really easy to do and if you have any questions they answer really quickly.

I customised after they made the demo template to make it look like it does :slight_smile:

You can also get a woo commerce plug in if you are set on having your own shop. But for me it’s not worth it was you need to get extra security for transactions etc. Folksy and E do all that for me !

Take a look at their demos and they have real examples under each theme of companies using their templates so you can get a real idea of what yours could look like!

Hope that helps but any other questions just let me know :slight_smile:

1 Like
(Andy) #14

Hi.

I have a site made using Wordpress. www.chompstomp.co.uk Mine is set up as a blog but I can easily switch over to a different theme which will combine blogging with a gallery (which will double as a store front)
If you want to spend a bit of time and have more personalisation then it is objectively better than most template based offerings out there. I have some knowledge of html and web site building and luckily my brother in law deals with my technical issues and web hosting

If you have little time or knowledge then Shopify to name one of the many out there is okay. 123-reg.co.uk is okay. I use them for my web domain reg service but have used their template solutions in the past. Their service is okay and I didn’t have many issues. Twitter, Facebook instagram can all be set up and you can post via your domain to these services - so no opening multiple tabs in your browser or loosing track of what site is updated and when.

It may be better to set up a website for blogging and as a gallery and link your work to your Folksy store front. You already know the benefits of selling via Folksy (or Etsy or other such sites) As you expand and get more confidence you can set up e commerce solutions for your domainand take it form there.

I hope my rambling helps a little.

(Hazel Jenkin) #15

My website www.woollywoodlanders.co.uk is one I built myself and I created all the pages in Notepad and used an ftp plugin in Firefox to upload them. If you go down this road, you need some self tuition (look on http://www.w3schools.com/htm and work through the excercises), and you do need to have a ‘nerdy’ type of brain to do this though! But never skimp on the paying and basket processes. It is possible for a fraudster to see the words in a write-your-own website and then copy and edit the basket code to pay less or get more - if anyone right-clicks on a webpage and clicks View Page Source they can see the raw coding. So always go for a secure process, I use Paypal’s own coding which is encrypted on their site and they create a shorthand secure version which I paste into my own website. I do make a bigger profit by selling this way as I only pay a single commission, to Paypal, and I don’t pay any fees to a webmaking company. However you do your selling process, I recommmend you always pay either your webcreation firm or Paypal to do it for you. The idea of sending people back to Folksy to buy is also a sound idea. But be aware that you will be paying three sets of commission or fees: to Folksy, to the webcreation firm and to Paypal, so do price your goods carefully.