Having a website of your own where you can freely express yourself and also interact with other like-minded people or for other commercial purposes is great.
And if you desire to know how to build a website on GoDaddy, then you just got to the right place.
Here, I will walk you through the whole website creation process on GoDaddy from the first step all the way to having a fully functional and well-designed website with all you need to run it smoothly going forward.
I will also be giving you rewarding tips to help you maintain the website properly with relative ease.
Let’s jump right in.
Overview of GoDaddy Platform
GoDaddy is one of the most popular platforms when it comes to website hosting services and buying as well as registering a domain name.
But those are not the only services it offers. It also offers a website builder, email marketing services, website security, and various content management systems like Joomla, WordPress, and others for the different types of websites that people want to use, just to name a few.
I have barely scratched the surface of what GoDaddy actually does.
Essentially, GoDaddy allows you to access all the kind of services you want for any type of website(s) you want to have under one roof at different pricing plans, based on your budget and objectives.
Some of the interesting features that GoDaddy has which most users love include shared hosting plans, WordPress optimized hosting services, email hosting services, Virtual Private Server (VPS) with root server access for your specific server needs, a beginner-friendly website builder with a drag and drop features design, fast loading speeds, and website migration services, among others.
It is a platform that will give you the chance to own a website and get all the other services you require to run it at its best performance.
It is also designed to for people of all levels, whether you are a beginner who knows nothing about websites, or an intermediate developer who knows a good deal of techy stuff but still wants help with a few things here and there, or an advanced developer who wishes to make specific changes to the servers of their websites, GoDaddy has many services you will find useful and good to work with.
So you can be sure to have an interesting experience there with website building, development, and optimization. And you also get great customer support that runs all round the clock to see you through when you get stuck.
How to Build a Website on GoDaddy – A Full Walkthrough
To build your website from zero using the GoDaddy website builder, here is the list of steps you should take:
Step 1. Go to www.godaddy.com
Step 2. Create your account there. There are 3 ways you can use to create your account. That is using your Facebook account, your Gmail account, or the regular way of filling out the registration form. Once you have created your account you will be taken to another page that is pretty much like the homepage of your GoDaddy account.
Step 3. On the top right corner of the page, click on the username you chose for that account. Doing that will bring a drop-down menu. Click on “Shop GoDaddy”. This will take you to another page that shows GoDaddy’s tools and products.
Step 4. Click on “websites and marketing” in the left menu of that page. You will be led to the page that gives details about GoDaddy websites and their website building tools.
Step 5. Click on “Start for Free” to begin creating your free GoDaddy website.
Step 6. Choose the category of your website. You will get various category options for your website. And this helps GoDaddy to determine the kind of website you want to build so that they can get you the right tools and resources for that. The options to choose from including online store, blog, non-profit, cosmetics, and beauty supply, coming soon or type your own category.
If you see the category of the website you want to build in these options, click on it to proceed. If not, write the category of the website you want to create in the space provided for “write your own category”. For instance, if you want a health website, just type the word “health site” as your category. If you want a forum website, type the word “forum” as the category.
When you are done with that, click “Next” to continue with the process. I have chosen blog category because I want a blog.
Step 7. Choose the title of your website. Here, you should write a name that you want people to use to identify your website. The title should ideally be one that relates to the purpose of your website and is short as well as memorable.
You should also note that this title is what will also make the name of your domain name, that is the www.yourwebsitedomainname.com. So you want to make sure you have chosen the name you wanted to use for the website. If you are building a website for a business you already have offline, you can use the name of the business as the title of your website.
Personally, since I want to build a health blog, I will go with the title “Health Island”.
After choosing your title, click on “Next” to have the builder create your website with the details you gave for it.
This is how you build a free website on GoDaddy in just a few easy steps.
The website will have a free domain with a GoDaddy extension. This means that, in my case, my domain name will be www.healthisland.godaddy.com and this shows that the website is not mine since I have been given a free domain name and I have no rights to the domain.
If you want to have a website with a self-hosted domain where you have all the rights to it, you should consider getting your own domain name, it shows your website is professional and serious about what you are offering. It also shows that you are there to stay since you are fully invested in it.
A self-hosted domain is without the GoDaddy extension. Like in my case, if I buy a domain name, it will be www.healthisland.com instead of the previous one.
To buy a domain name, you will need to look through the pricing plans of GoDaddy and choose the one that offers the features you want for your website including a domain name.
There are 4 pricing plans which are Basic, Standard, Premium, and E-commerce and you have the option to choose to be billed monthly or yearly. Yearly is cheap compared to the monthly plan and you will get to save a lot.
After subscribing to a plan, you will be guided on how to connect your domain name to your website and if you experience any problems, you can contact the support to help you with that. They are quick to respond.
Customization of Your Website
Now that you have a website created for you. You need to make a few changes to the website to make it more personal and customize it to your taste or goals based on your plan and vision for the website.
To do that, there are 2 types of customizations to make. These are basic customization and deep customization.
Basic Website Customization
This customization involves the basic changes you will need to make to get your website heading in the right direction. They are easy to do and will really increase the value of your website. So here they are:
* Changing the theme. The theme of your website is like a website template that gives the design layout of your website. If you are okay with the theme that has been used on your website, you can skip this step. But if you are not okay and would want to change it, you can do so by going to the top right corner of your website editor where you will see three items “Website”, “Theme” and “Settings”.
Click on “Theme” then go to “Try a new look”. You will see a number of themes to choose from. Go through them and see which fits your website best and click on it. It will be saved and automatically updated to your website.
* Updating the homepage. The homepage makes the impression of your website good or bad and you simply want to make it look good and easy to navigate for your users. It should also give a summary of what your website does when visitors look through it. And to make it easy to use, you should add some personal information there and change a few other general things to make it more personal. I will walk you through all the sections there and help you make the right changes. Let’s do it.
– 1st section. The first section looks okay and you can leave it like that. Since it shows the name of your website and has a photo that represents health, I will let it remain like that. However, if yours doesn’t match with what you want it to be and you would like to change the text or image, you can still do it.
To change the photo, you will mouse over the photo and an “update” button on the bottom right corner of the photo you want to change will appear, click on it. A new window will appear on the right. Click on “change image” and then go to “add images”. You can upload the image the usual way from your computer or you can drag and drop it in this section and it will be added for you.
To change the text next to the image, just click on the text and then highlight it and delete it. Then add the text you want to be featured in that area.
– 2nd section. If you look well, you will see that the information in this section is pretty generic. To make it personal, I will change “welcome” to “Welcome to Health Island”. And then I will change the text below this from “There is so much to see here…” to “This is a website that is aimed at helping people improve their health statuses and maintain them by providing top health tips, recommendations, and resources”. That gives a summary of the website and it should be like that.
– 3rd section (my blog). This is the section that gives a summary of the blog posts on your website. You always want to have this as it will help visitors be aware of your new content and they can view from it here. They can also be led to the blog page where all your posts are located and can read them easily. So I will let this section remain.
– 4th section. The fourth section on my website has a photo gallery that I find unnecessary for my site. So I will delete this section. You can choose to keep it if you find it useful. This is based on personal preferences. To delete this section, mouse over the photos in this section, and a frame will appear. Click the three dots on the top right corner and then go to “delete section”.
If you want this section to remain but you want to replace the photos with your own photos, you will just have to click on the image you want to change, and a window will appear on your right. Click on “change image” then “add images” and you can upload or drag and drop there for it to be added.
– 5th section. In this section, we have the mailing list subscription. This lets visitors who want to be notified of new content or other updates related to your website to give their personal contact details. It is a really useful feature, so I will keep it.
– 6th section. Here, you have social media buttons that allow you to connect your social media accounts to your website. This is also a great feature which I recommend you keep.
And you are done with the basic customization of your website.
So you will only need to hit the “Publish” button to make the changes apply to your website and get your website out there on the web for everyone to see it.
NOTE: If you chose another category of website or website theme, it may be different for you. However, you can use what I have done here as an idea of how to make the kind of customizations you want for your specific type of website and theme.
This section goes into deeper aspects of your website and they can be done over time, slowly by slowly, as you grow the website. They are not as urgent as the basic customizations. Here is what you should do to make this type of customization.
The contact page has been done for you so you won’t need to worry about that. As for the about page, you should just follow the leads given by GoDaddy to write the content for the page.
To add new pages for other crucial pages that you want to have for your site, you should go to “website” on the top right corner of the dashboard, and below that, you will see two symbols for reordering your pages and for adding new pages. Click the + sign on the far right. In fact, if you mouse over it, it will show the “add page” text. Click on that and add the title of the page and it will be added to your website.
– Connecting your domain name with your website. There are 4 options when it comes to this. The first option is to work with a free domain name that has a GoDaddy extension, as mentioned previously. If you want to use this, you won’t need to do anything as it is done for you by default.
The second option is to buy a new domain name and connect it to your site. To do that, you will go to “Settings” on the top right corner of the dashboard, then choose “connect domain”. You will choose the domain name you want to buy, in my cases for the Health Island website, I would go with www.healthisland.com domain name. You can go with a .net or .org or any other ending that you like.
Once you see it is available, click on it and then select the subscription plan you want to work with that accommodates the domain name and hosting. GoDaddy gives you the domain name free for the first year and then you pay for it from the following year onward.
The third option is to buy a domain name only. This works for those people who don’t want to host their website on Godaddy. They just want to buy the domain name and build and host the website somewhere else. All you do here is choose this option, follow the steps provided for buying the domain name, and then go use it to build your website.
The fourth option is to connect a domain name you already own. This is for those people who have a domain name they bought way before they built the website here on GoDaddy. This option helps you access the domain name and connect it with your site. Just follow the steps provided as they are easy to take and quite intuitive.
– Adding new sections to your pages. It is possible to add new sections to any pages you have on your website. And if you feel the section is essential, all you have to do to add it is to open the page you want to add a new section to in the website editor.
You will see a + sign in each section of that page. Locate the area you want to add that section and then click on the + sign that is above that area. Mouse over that sign and you will see the text “Add new section” appear.
Click on it and you will open a new features section on the right. You will see the various features you can add to the section like content, images calendar, video introduction, code, and social media feed, among others.
Choose the feature you want to add in that section and click on it.
You can drag the image of that feature from the features section to your website editor or click on “Add” and it will be applied to that section.
If you have a hard time deciding the feature you want to add in your new section, you can browse through the recommended features for that section still in the same features menu on the right and choose the most fitting one.
– Adding a logo to your site. To add a logo to your website that people can use to confirm that it’s your website they are visiting when they come back again, you will just go to “Websites” in the top right corner of the website editor, then click “Home”. Once you open your homepage in the editor, click anywhere on that page and you will make a features section appear on your right side with the various aspects of the homepage you can edit. Click on “logo”.
You can edit and delete the current text on the logo section and then add your own or you can choose to leave it like that. You can also add an image to be your website logo by clicking the “update a logo” button and uploading your favorite image as your logo.
Also, you can add a favicon that shows up in the tab of a browser when you open a website that has added a favicon. To do that, go to “Settings” in the top right corner of your website editor, then to “favicon” and then upload the image you want to be your favicon.
– Adding social media accounts to your site. To link your social media accounts to your site, go to “settings” then “social media links”. You will see the social media sites you can link to in your site and space below each site for you to paste the link of your account to that social media site. Copy and paste the link in that space and then click “Done” and they will be added to your site.
– Changing fonts and colors of your site. Other than changing the theme of your site, as we looked at in the basic customization, you can also customize the theme in terms of colors and fonts.
To change the theme color, you go to “Themes” in the top right corner of the dashboard and then go to “themes”. Then click “colors” to choose the color you want to use.
To change the theme font, you will just look below the “colors” section and choose the font you want to work with.
I strongly encourage you to take your time to browse through the website editor and the features section to get acquainted with them and learn how to make even more customizations and learn about more features GoDaddy gives you for your subscription plan. There’s a lot in there.
The dashboard, as you have seen, is easy to navigate and you won’t have issues trying to find your way around.
Top Tips to Help Your Website Succeed
Here are some valuable tips to keep in mind as you grow your website to help you achieve your goals and make the website nothing short of a success.
1. Work with Search Engine Optimization (SEO) – SEO helps your website be well optimized for your visitors and for search engines like Google. So you want to work with it to ensure your website is at its best state. GoDaddy provides SEO in some of their subscription plans and if you are not well versed with SEO, I would recommend you go for those plans. They will greatly improve the value of your website, and even increase the number of visitors to your website and get them to take lots of actions that will boost your website success.
2. Publish content regularly – If you are working with a blog site or have a blog page in your site, you will need to be publishing new content about the topic of your website on a regular basis. Make the content helpful, thorough and easy to understand. This helps to show a website is active and also adds SEO value to it.
3. Use Google analytics and search console – To measure a website’s success, you need to track the site’s performance. And using free tools like Google Analytics and Google Search Console helps a great deal. GoDaddy will help you know how to connect your websites to these tools so make good use of that on your site.
4. Keep evolving your website as you grow – As you publish more content, and keep doing customizations, make sure you also update your homepage. The homepage should always reflect a summary of the whole website. This means that if you add a new feature on the site that is not mentioned on the homepage, see that you add it. Also, keep improving your site design as you grow.
5. Build a reliable and trustworthy brand – In whatever category your website is in, aim to make your website the best. See that your content, the services you offer are the best and establish your website as a good brand in that category. Hire freelancers to help with that if need be or dedicate your time to doing that yourself. This is a critical part if you want to website to bring the kind of results you hope for it.
6. Optimize for mobile users – Mobile devices are now being used a lot by people to access the internet and you also need to make your website mobile-friendly if you want to get and retain visitors who are using the same. Ensure you are using a mobile-friendly theme and the font is readable on mobile devices too.
And that is pretty much how you build a GoDaddy website and get to grow it!
It wasn’t difficult, was it?
Well, now it is up to you to keep the website evolving and making progress towards the direction of your plan and dreams.
You are going to enjoy running the website.
It is a really great feeling.
I wish you all the best with it and if you have any questions or need help with anything, don’t hesitate to shoot me a question in the comments and I will shoot an answer right back.
Cheers to website building and website success!