It's Time to Get Your Proofreading Business Online and Start Making Money: Create a Website!
Our aim is to help you make money proofreading.
Let’s have a recap on where we’re up to…
Okay, this is Step 2 of our Where to Start list of steps that will give you concrete solutions on your journey to creating your own successful proofreading business.
So, why create a website for your proofreading business? As I mentioned in my initial post (here if you want to refresh your memory…) the obvious benefit of having your own website is that you’re in complete control of how you communicate with your target audience to sell your products or proofreading services.
Your own website is a shop window to an ever-expanding online community, which also happens to include the very people you want to advertise your services to.
Consider this: when was the last time you leafed through a printed copy of the Yellow Pages? No, I can’t remember either. The fact is, almost all searches are conducted online, and if you don’t have an online presence, all of your efforts to become a proofreader will be wasted.
Just some of the reasons why you should create your own website:
Despite these obvious benefits of having your own website, I also understand why many people avoid doing so. It’s all too easy to feel overwhelmed at the prospect of learning yet another new discipline, especially if you’re fresh from working your way through The No-Nonsense Proofreading Course. And hiring a professional can be just as daunting and expensive.
The key is to do some research and break the process down into manageable steps. If you stick around, that’s exactly what I’ll try to do.
Hopefully you’re now fully on board with the idea that in order to take your new proofreading business forward, you really should have your own website, so let’s start with the most cost-effective route to making this a reality:
Free web hosting and free website builders
Yes, they do exist, and they’re an excellent place to start if this is your first foray into setting up a website. Most of these free website builders offer a range of solutions that provide template-driven designs and drag and drop designs that make the process pretty straightforward.
Below is a list of fourteen popular free website builders which include free web hosting.
(They’re all .com if you’re copy and pasting.)
As ever, before you jump in, let me make a couple of things clear from the outset. Whilst all of these website creation options offer ‘free’ web hosting and in most cases ‘free’ site builders, not all of these options may be acceptable to you for your first proofreading business website.
For example, just about all of the free options are indeed ‘free’ in than you won’t part with a single penny but the name of the website host will remain in your website title.
Using Wix.com as an example, you may want to call your site ‘abc-proofreader.com’ but a ‘free’ website set-up with Wix.com would become ‘abc-proofreader.wixsite.com’.
I fully understand that this may not be acceptable for many people, especially if you’re trying to convey a professional persona, but if this is your first exposure to website creation, this is without doubt a fantastic opportunity to experiment on someone else’s dime.
Whichever site you choose from the list above, you’ll find all of them provide templates or themes in one form or another to help you with your design choices.
Going back to Wix.com as a further example, they offer a superb automated set-up assistant called Wix ADI, which actually creates a site for you based on a series of questions and answers that you’re guided through in the setup.
Whilst I’ve referred to Wix in my examples, please go ahead and take a look at all of the sites I’ve listed, as you’ll only find one you’re comfortable with by signing up and trying them out.
It’s also worth keeping in mind, that having set up your proofreading website with any or all of the free website builders listed, you’re not obliged to publish or make them live, until you’re good and ready to do so.
Once you get to the stage where you’ve got your site set up and designed to your liking, you can go ahead and publish it (for free!).
If, however, having the webhost's name visible in your domain name bothers you, you can very easily upgrade to a paid plan with all of these free website providers. In doing so, you will remove the name of the host from your website title.
In the case of Wix.com, upgrading to a paid plan, for a small monthly premium, allows you to add your own domain name, thereby removing ‘wixsite’ from your site name and giving you the desired professional look for your proofreading business.
This principle of having the webhosts name visible in the website url is more or less universal amongst all webhosts offering ‘free website creation’ but can almost always be dropped by upgrading to their paid plans.
In fact, I’m happy to reveal that this was the very evolution of this website https://www.proofreading-course.com/ It started life as a free website on Weebly, and was upgraded to a paid plan at a later date and remains a Weebly powered site today.
The bottom line is that you can have a very professional website to promote your proofreading business for absolutely no cost whatsoever. And all of the free website builders listed above are very scalable too once your proofreading business grows, and most are very intuitive and easy to use even for beginners.
Finally, a little bit about WordPress…
I may have placed it at the bottom of the list above, and mentioning it at the end of this article, but WordPress is by no means a last choice, far from it.
Of the entire internet, WordPress powers over a third of it, with approximately 455,000,000 websites built on a WordPress platform right now. Don’t be fooled in to thinking that it’s just a blogging platform because that would be to overlook one of the best website builders out there, and they too have both free and paid plans.
Having created websites with WordPress, Shopify and Weebly my own preference is WordPress without a doubt. However, depending on how much functionality you want on your website, it’s probably fair to say that you’ll have a steeper learning curve with WordPress if you’re a beginner.
As ever, the choice is yours but go ahead and get stuck in, you won’t regret it, and once you do, you’ll be the proud owner of a proofreading business website much sooner than you think.
Step 3. Sign up with every appropriate social media channel.
Bye for now.
Full disclosure & disclaimer…
Mike and I are not affiliated in any way with the free website building sites listed above, though we do have first-hand knowledge of Weebly, Shopify & WordPress.
This information is presented without condition or for personal profit in the hope that, having bought The No-Nonsense Proofreading Course you can make money proofreading without delay.
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My name's Mike Sellars and I'm an experienced proofreader and the author of The No-Nonsense Proofreading Course. Click here to find out more about me.
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