How To Publish a Website

The Basics of a Website Launch

The terms 'publishing' and 'launching' are interchangeable. Most website-building software programs have a built-in FTP tool that automatically uploads your site documents to the web host.

Step 1

Start your FTP software program. If you’re using the FTP options in Internet Explorer or the FTP tool in Firefox, or if you’ve get a third party software program like Cute FTP or WS FTP, start up the program. You’ll need your hosting account login info handy because your desktop won’t be able to login and communicate with the server without it. Generally, you only have to enter the login info the first time you login. The settings will be saved by the FTP program.

Go here for more information on how to FTP documents up to a server.

Step 2

Drag and drop the website documents from your desktop to your hosting account.

Most, if not all, of your documents should go into the “doc” folder at the website. The path would look something like this:

ftp://servername.hostingcompany.com/yoursite.com/docs

Of course, you would replace server name and hosting company with the server at your web host, while yoursite.com would be replaced with your domain name.

Step 3

Once the documents are loaded up to the site, punch in your URL and check the functionality of the site. If one or more areas aren’t working properly, start by troubleshooting that the files have uploaded correctly.

The files at the server should look like a simple directory tree structure like you see in Windows. The docs folder should at least contain a page titled index.html. That would be your home page. Common sub-folders would be ones for images and other scripts or programs like stat reports that run within the site.

Step 4

If problems persist, check your DNS settings and make sure you have the nameservers correctly configured at your registrar. The nameservers should be pointing to the hosting company.

Here’s an example of a nameserver setting: AnyServer1.Thinkhost.com


This may all seem a little scary and overwhelming at first, but learning how to publish your a website is a very rewarding experience.

Rick Contrata is a Certified SEO Professional, owns a domain registration website and owns or markets a number of other sites and businesses.
 

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