Do I need a Programmer?

by Fabian Aubrey - Date: 2006-12-28 - Word Count: 786 Share This!

The goal of your project and how fast you want to get to it will determine if you need to get a programmer or not. If you have some really original, never done before website idea, then a programmer might be a good option. If you simply want to run your own website to share information or sell a product, I would say that a programmer is not really necessary.

Nowadays, it is possible to create and maintain a simple website using tools that your web hosting provider will give you for free.

A very simple example that will get you thinking is this:

Imagine that you want to build a house. Your first step will be to find the land where you can start laying down the foundation. This lot of land will need to have it's own address, and have all the utilities running through it, like electricity and water. Your web host is this lot of land. When you sign up with a web host you will choose your address ( and your web host will provide the utilities (bandwidth). So there you are, you have your very own vacant lot on a really busy street with it's very own civic address. When people drive by, all they see is an empty lot, but that land is yours to do what you want with.

At this point, many people have the instinct of calling on contractors and construction workers to start laying the foundation and building your structure. This is the "I'm going to hire a programmer" approach. Your house will definitely get built, but you will pay a whole lot of money doing it. Everything will be built from scratch.

The other approach to all this is buying a prefabricated building from a supplier. These houses are easy to assemble, and generally meet the criteria that you want. Your web host can supply you with many of those prefabricated structures for free. For example, the web host that is hosting this very site provides me with a menu where I can install certain components that will get me online. If I wanted my own storefront e-commerce website, then all I have to do is activate that option in my menu, and answer a few simple configuration questions. A few minutes later, I have the structure in place to start selling products online. If I wanted a website to share information with others and write stories, then I can choose to install another component on my site that will add Blog functionalities to my site. There are countless components available to do a bunch of things you might want to do or didn't even realize that you wanted to do. These components are like prefabricated homes. When you install them, they sit directly on your land and the whole world can start using them.

Human nature is such that even if something is functional and great, we still want to put our own twist on things. After all, who wants to have a prefabricated home that looks identical to the prefabricated home next door and identical to the one down the street? Depending on what component you install, you can generally change the colors and logos that appear on these programs and often that will be enough to set you apart from the rest. In cases where it's not, then you might need to look towards hiring a graphic artist to give your site that look you want.

Once your building is built and painted that way you like, all you need to do is go in and fill the shelves with your product or service. These preinstalled tools all have administration menus where you can add products and content easily. After all, no one wants to go to a store with empty shelves, or read a newspaper with blank pages.

Lastly, when you building is up, and your shelves are stocked, you need to let your customers know where to find you. This step can be a bit complicated because there are so many ways to do it. I will address different methods about how to get people to find you in another feature in the future, but needless to say, that simply getting listed on search engines like Google or Yahoo won't cut it. Getting listed on search engines can be complicated, and is the real world equivalent to getting listed in the Yellow Pages when it comes to generating sales and traffic... not very efficient.

Programmers are usually a good idea when you have something really specific in mind... something you have never seen elsewhere. In cases like these, you might want to consult with someone that has some internet knowledge to guide you in the right direction. I

Related Tags: internet, website, need, programmer

Fabian Aubrey of writes informative articles on technology and online business in the hopes of helping small businesses and individuals achieve greater internet success.

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