Website Development Advice

  cataylor 05:05 22 Nov 2007

I want to create a membership subscription website that hosts many options such as online business bidding, resources, article directory, work sharing space, profiles, forums, blogs, as well as live conferencing. Can someone tell me where to start? I have created simple websites in the past; however, this is more complex. I am on a shoestring budget, so if it takes me a year to do, so be it! :) What hosting should I choose? I have seen membership subscriptions software out there for building sites, but I don't know if that is what I need and if it is which one I should purchase. I will need passwords/accounts for each member and am hoping to receive at least 1000 members for this site. I need to be able to create an auction style site, and I noticed that there are PHP scripts, whatever that means out there for this. Thanks and all advice is much appreciated.

  Kemistri 12:55 23 Nov 2007

I don't want to burst your bubble, and I do believe that it is possible for you to learn how to do all that with the necessary dedication and the resources that are available, but you may be biting off more than you or most people could handle. You are right to think that you need to DIY if your budget is tiny, given the likely five figure sums that you will be quoted; but the kind of site that you describe would normally be created and managed by a whole team of developers. If you still want to take it on, start at the top; if you are not yet 100% accomplished with HMTL and CSS, get there first. Then focus on just one technology/coding system that you don't yet know and learn how to do that, building on what you have picked up so far. Keep your approach as modular as possible. Any decent fully featured hosting will do, and you don't need to pay a great deal. Heart Internet is good, for example. If you need fora, run them in PHPBB.

  cataylor 17:35 23 Nov 2007

Thanks so much. I do agree with you that this will be taking on more than I could possibly handle. I appreciate it. Do you know what someone would charge to do it for me? What if I wanted to start out simpler and then build on. Maybe just a normal membership website with profiles and forums and maybe a article directory.
Where would you recommend?

  Kemistri 21:43 23 Nov 2007

I don't work in the field, as it's just a hobby for me, but I know people who do. Prices tend to vary quite widely, but I think that any well reputed firm with the capability to provide everything that you mention, plus manage and develop it, would charge a five figure sum of some kind. When you consider the wages involved for a team of developers to do a big project, you can imagine why. I think you probably have little option but to take this on yourself. Hey, it will be a learning experience! I earlier used the word modular; remember that most (though not all) kinds of website features are fairly easy to add on retrospectively, provided that you plan accordingly from the start. Fora, in particular, can be simple bolt-ons that need only affect things like navigation menus in the existing content. Basically, task number one is to plan the entire structure before building it gradually, starting with the core elements that the site cannot do without.

  Kemistri 21:47 23 Nov 2007

Link for PHPBB - click here
Sitepoint - click here
Good books like this one - click here

  cataylor 21:57 23 Nov 2007

Thanks :)

  DieSse 23:51 24 Nov 2007

Free forums you can personalise and link to from your base site.

click here

Free blogs abound - one you can personalise and link to from your base site

click here

Free hosting with no ads - and even free sub-domain names (where you can practice without cost)

click here

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