Need advice on setting up a dating website

  happylady 17:00 07 Jan 2008

I barely know the basics concerning I.T & computers but i've got a great idea in a specialist dating website that i want to set up. How on earth do i go about it? What software do i need or can the designer do all that stuff for me? I've googled for website designers but there's thousands of them, i don't know where to start & know which ones are credible. Would appreciate your help.

  rossgolf 17:08 07 Jan 2008

not sure on who to go for but the designer wil use there own software and design it if you giv them some basic drawings on what you want it to look like etc

  pchelper001 19:30 07 Jan 2008

try getting a local web designer, who you can meet and see in the flesh

  Kemistri 22:10 07 Jan 2008

Use any that are UKWDA reg'd.

  Forum Editor 23:43 07 Jan 2008

that the UKWDA click here is a good place to start, but there are other ways to find good designers.

You'll often see designers' logos or credits on websites - usually right at the bottom of a homepage, near the copyright claim, so look around for sites you like and contact the designers. Ask to see other sites they've designed, and get a feel for the kind of people they are.

  happylady 12:55 08 Jan 2008

Can i register a domain name without having the site set up first? Can i also register 2 domain names for the same site?

  babybell 14:56 08 Jan 2008

You can use to search and see if your domain name is available. I believe you can purchase them without yet having a website. Your idea for a website sounds like you will want people to pay a subscription and the last thing you want is to have the sight looking homemade as people will be worried about using it. The best thing to do is write down what you want the site to be able to do and then contact a local web design company and go from there.

  Kemistri 15:13 08 Jan 2008

Yes, you can rent (you don't really own them) as many names as you like; you can have them redirected; and you don't need a website (except for redirection, of course).

I strongly advise you to shop around and study the T&Cs. Compare prices, because they are not equal and look at the "hidden" costs, such as transfer fees.

  Forum Editor 23:51 12 Jan 2008

Running a dating service is something that can be an absolute minefield, especially if you make a charge for membership and/or introductions. You will need to register as a data controller withing the meaning of the data protection legislation, and you'll need to comply fully with the relevant consumer-protection legislation as it applies to the sale of services via the internet.

My advice is that before you even think of putting a site online you consult a solicitor - the potential for problems with online dating services is huge.

Before you go looking for domain names I advise you to set up a hosting account with a reputable company. Then you can register names via your account, and thus ensure that they are nicely parked, ready for use. If you start using any of the cheap domain name registering companies you could end up with names parked with a different company to the one that eventually hosts your site, and you might want to move them. Its better to have them in the same place as your hosting account.

  happylady 00:14 15 Jan 2008

Thanks you for all your very helpful replies. I'm still doing my research at the moment and i was in the process of registering the domain names but a question to FE, if i yet don't have a site, how can i register my hosting with anyone? I do plan to both register & host with

Thanks FE for your advice about the data protection issue. That something i never, but should have thought about.

  Kemistri 01:18 15 Jan 2008

If you had to wait until you had a website before you could arrange hosting, it would be a catch 22 situation! You pay for domain names that may remain unused and you can pay for hosting that may remain unused for days, weeks, even years. It makes no odds to the service provider as long as it's paid for.

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