Internet Tip - Free Website Making Tools

Created: October 24, 2006
Last Edited: November 17, 2008
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Here is a list of some great website tools for creating a good webpage/website. The tools, websites, and services I decided to list here had to meet three requirements to be listed: They had to be free, they had to be small in size and they had to be somewhat easy to use.

Code (HTML) Editor

I do not recommend using WYSIWYG (What You See Is What You Get) editors like FrontPage. WYSIWYG editors are very limited in what you can do with visual style, layout and appearance. Also the code will be bigger then it needs to be. So my recommendation is that you learn HTML and use a real text editor with syntax highlighting.

MAX's HTML Beauty++ 2004

You can download Max's HTML Beauty++ 2004 editor here: http://www.htmlbeauty.com/

I have been using Max's HTML Beauty++ 2004 editor to make HTML documents for years. It is a great editor and it is free. Not only does it have proper syntax highlighting for HTML files, but it also does syntax highlighting for Javascript, PHP, XML (RSS files), VBScript, C++ and more.

Tip: You can setup Max's HTML editor to instantly preview your HTML file in different browsers such as Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox and Netscape. To do this click on Tools -> Program Options.... Under "Preview" click on External Browsers. Follow the instructions below for each browser:

Internet Explorer

[+]

Mozilla Firefox

[+]

Netscape Navigator

[+]

Safari for PC

[+]

Then you can use the "Preview" button to select which browser you want to preview your HTML document in.

Javascript

Here are some tips for making Javascript code: Internet Explorer is really bad at telling you where your errors are at and what your errors are in Javascript. So I use Firefox to test my Javascript and see the errors. In firefox, load your html page and then click on Tools -> JavaScript Console to see any errors you might have. You can also use the Javascript Console in Netscape. To do this click on Tools -> Web Development -> JavaScript Console.

Safari for PC also has a Javascript console but it is usually not shown in the menus. You have to activate it. To activate the Javascript console in Safari do the following:

  1. Click on Start -> Run and type in %APPDATA%\Apple Computer\Safari and press enter
  2. Right Click on preferences.plist and select Open With.... Choose Select a program from the list and then click on Notepad
  3. At the end of the file just before </dict> paste in <key>IncludeDebugMenu</key> <true/>
  4. Save the file and restart Safari

Then is Safari you can use the Javascript Console by clicking on Debug -> Show Javascript Console.

FTP Program

CoffeeCup Free FTP

CoffeeCup Free FTP can be downloaded here: http://www.coffeecup.com/free-ftp/.

You need a good FTP program to upload your files to your server. CoffeeCup Free FTP can be used for that purpose.

FTP Tip:

Sometimes you need to download your HTML files from your server onto another computer for editing. If you download your HTML file using FTP and then find that your document has double line spacing instead of single spacing, re-download the file using FTP but beforehand change the "File Transfer Mode" to Binary instead of "Auto". Then the file should not have double line spacing.

CoffeeCup FTP Tips:

  • Once you setup your server information you can also setup the initial startup folder. So if you keep your HTML files in C:\HTML then set your "Initial Local Folder" to C:\HTML.
  • If CoffeeCup FTP disconnects you from the server too quickly then under the setup for the server check Stay Connected.

Web Image Tools

If you have a copy of Paint Shop Pro by all means learn how to use it for the web. It has many great tools for creating and editing pictures and images for websites. But if you don't have Paint Shop Pro take a look at these free image and graphic tools and tips.

Print Screen Key

The Print Screen Key (PrtScn) is a very important key for making websites. Go to any webpage or even your desktop or a program and press the "Print Screen" key, then go into an image editing program such as Microsoft Paint and press Ctrl-V or click on Edit -> Paste. The image of the screen will then pop-up in the paint program. You can then crop the image (cut it to a smaller picture), resize the image and save it as JPG or GIF. I use the print screen key to take pictures for tutorials or to show an image of a tool in a program or to make an icon.

Alt-Print Screen

If you press Alt-Print Screen instead of taking a picture of the whole screen you will get a screen capture of the current active window. So if the current window is a small window it will just capture that window, then you can paste it in a paint program such as Microsoft Paint. An example of how to use this is to show a picture of a pop-up ad in an article about how not to click on bad pop-ups.

Microsoft Paint

Ms Paint is free, it comes with Windows and it can be used to make web pages look nice. A quick way to start Ms Paint is to click on Start -> Run and type in mspaint and press enter.

I use Ms Paint to crop screen captures from the Print Screen key so I can show just a certain part of the screen in tutorials. I also use Paint to draw icons and buttons.

Pros:
  • Free and comes with Windows.
  • Can open and save in popular graphic formats including JPG, GIF, PNG.
  • Easily flip, crop, rotate and resize objects.
  • Drawing tools include freehand, line, circle, flood fill, etc.
  • Zoom Tool
Cons:
  • Tries to save images with the extension in uppercase letters (GIF instead of gif). So I usually type the whole filename when saving (Ex: image.gif). This especially matters if you are using Linux based web servers such as Apache servers. They won't load an image or document if you don't type in the case exactly as it is saved on the server.
  • Doesn't do a good job at saving GIF files. When it decreases the colors it also makes the image look bad.
  • There are no JPG optimization options when saving.
  • Does not let you set transparent background color on GIFs and PNGs. (At least in the XP version.)
Click here for tips and instructions on Ms Paint

IrfanView

You can download IrfanView here: http://www.irfanview.com/ or here: download.com.

I use IrfanView to do some graphic editing that I cannot do with Ms Paint such as set a transparent background for GIF and PNG images. However, IrfanView does not have any drawing tools such as lines, shapes, and flood fill.

Features

  • Can set transparent background for GIFs and PNGs.
  • Saves JPGs and GIFs more clearly then Ms Paint.
  • Crop, resize and rotate images.

Click here for tips and instructions on IrfanView

Ultimate Paint

You can download Ultimate Paint here: http://www.ultimatepaint.com/download.php.

I use Ultimate Paint to edit images in ways that Ms Paint and IrfanView cannot, such as flood fill with transparency and threshold for GIFs and PNGs.

Features

  • Saves GIFs and JPGs more clearly then Ms Paint.
  • Drawing tools such as lines, freehand, flood fill.
  • Fill background with transparent color for GIFs and PNGs.
  • Crop, resize and rotate tools.

Click here for tips and instructions on using Ultimate Paint

Web Stats

It is good to know who your target audience is for your website. That is where Web statistics comes in. It can tell you where your visitors are from, how they are finding your site and what time of day your website is getting the most traffic.

The following web stat services are free:

StatCounter.com

With StatCounter you can have an invisible web counter or a hit counter that tells users how many visitors you have received since a certain date.

Pros:

Cons:

Google Analytics

Google Analytics is a more powerful web statistics service but also a more confusing service. It does not include a hit counter, but has many options that you, as a webmaster can use to see who your audience is and what they are doing.

Pros:

Cons:

Make Money with Affiliate Advertisements

Here is a quick rundown of the affiliate advertising programs I have tried. This is how it works: You sign up with an affiliate program as a publisher. The affiliate program then gives you some code to put on your web page where you want their ads to be. There are generally two ways to make money:

PPC - Pay Per Click. With PPC you get paid a few pennies for each visitor that clicks on an advertisement from your web page. This is also sometimes called CPC (Cost Per Click).

PPA - Pay Per Action. With Pay Per Action you get paid, not when a visitor clicks on the ad, but when the visitor does an action such as: purchase something from the advertiser's website, sign-up for a newsletter, etc. You usually get paid a few dollars when the visitor completes the action. This is also sometimes referred to as CPA (Cost Per Action).

CPM - Cost Per 1,000 Impressions. With this type of advertising you place a banner ad on your website and the company pays you a certain amount for every 1,000 times the ad displays. It could be something like $4 for every 1,000 displays. So if you have 5,000 unique and "qualifying" visitors a day you would make about $20 a day at $4 CPM. This type of advertising could also include displaying pop-unders or pop-ups.

I have tried PPC, PPA and CPM affiliate programs. Here is a list of the programs I have tried and a rough estimate of the money I earned with the programs:
ProgramWebsiteTypeMoney Earned
Google Adsense PPC Much more than enough to get a check every month*
Yahoo Publisher Network http://publisher.yahoo.com/ PPC Just barely enough to get a check every month*
Amazon Associates Program http://affiliate-program.amazon.com/gp/associates/join PPA Not enough to get a check every month*
Commission Junction, Befree http://www.cj.com PPA $0
Linkshare http://www.linkshare.com/ PPA $0
Fastadvert http://www.fastadvert.com/ CPM - $1 per 1000 banner impressions $0
Lightspeed Affiliate Program http://affiliates.lightspeedresearch.com/ PPA $0
Performics http://www.performics.com/ PPA $0

* Generally to get a check sent to you from an affiliate program you have to earn at least $100.00. Sometimes it is less, maybe $50.00.

As you can see, none of the PPA (Pay Per Action) affiliate programs made any money except for Amazon's. Even then it wasn't enough. I believe that the reason for this is that most PPA affiliate tracking is not done correctly. I think that there were some purchases through my website on these programs, but for some reason they were not tracked. The tracking algorithms or processes they have in place may not work correctly. Also users may have on their computers programs that erase cookies, which would also make it impossible to track PPA.

I also joined http://www.bidvertiser.com. They are also a PPC program. I know I did not make any money through them, but I am not sure if I had their ads up for over a month, so it wasn't a fair trial. If anyone has any information on bidvertiser I would like to hear it.

There are three affiliate companies that denied my applications. They are Tribal Fusion, Casale Media and ValueClick Media. I hear that if you can get accepted by these companies as a publisher then there are BIG payouts. But they do not accept many applications.

Tribal Fusion has high CPM (Cost Per Thousand) rates. That means they pay publishers a certain dollar amount for every thousand times that a banner advertisement is displayed. Their FAQ claims that they pay "publishers 55% of all revenue we secure for your site."

Casale Media also uses CPM (Cost Per Thousand) impressions ads. Their Features & Benefits page claims that Casale Media "offers its publishers the industry's highest payouts - 70% - and works on a strictly CPM basis, making it that much easier for publishers to reach their profit goals."

ValueClick Media again uses CPM (Cost Per Thousand) impression ad units. They include banners, pop-unders, rich media and video. They claim to give you "expert tools to earn the highest payouts and effective CPMs possible." They denied my application in December of 2005 and another application in December of 2007. My website apparently is not good enough for their standards.

Donations

You can accept donations to your site throught PayPal Donate or Amazon Honor System. Which is better? Paypal Donate vs. Amazon Honor System:

PayPal Donate

At the time of this writing it is free to sign up for PayPal Donate and there are no monthly fees. You are basically charged 2.9% of the total amount of the donation plus .30 cents. That means:
Donation AmountPayPal TakesYou get from PayPal
$1.00.33 cents (1 * 2.9% + .30).67 cents
$5.00.45 cents (5 * 2.9% + .30)$4.55
$10.00.59 cents (10 * 2.9% + .30)$9.41
$100.00$3.20 (100 * 2.9% + .30)$96.80

For more information or to sign up go to: PayPal Donation Button.

For current prices go to PayPal Transaction Fees and Pricing Details. The PayPal website says these transaction prices are for US only. See International Payments.

Amazon Honor System

At the time of this writing it is free to sign up for Amazon Honor System and there are no monthly fees. You are basically charged 2.9% of the total amount of the donation plus .30 cents. That means:
Donation AmountAmazon TakesYou get from Amazon
$1.00.33 cents (1 * 2.9% + .30).67 cents
$5.00.45 cents (5 * 2.9% + .30)$4.55
$10.00.59 cents (10 * 2.9% + .30)$9.41
$50.00$1.75 (50 * 2.9% + .30)$48.25

For more information or to sign up go to: Amazon Honor System.

For current prices go to Payment Fees. Amazon's website does not say if there are different fees for US or International donations. However, according to the FAQ they only accept up to $50 for any individual transaction on the honor system.

Submit Website to Search Engines and Directories

Here we go. The most important way to make your website popular is to have it indexed by search engines and directories. So here I have a list of the most important website search engines to be indexed in from top to bottom. After that I will show you a list of the best sites that will submit your website to multiple search engines at one time.

Tip: Many experts will tell you that you only need to submit your main domain name to each search engine (Ex: http://www.yourdomain.com) and then if you have a link from there to all your other pages the search engine will index the other pages by itself. However, I find it more effective to submit each individual page that I want indexed in the search engine (Ex: http://www.yourdomain.com/page1.htm, http://www.yourdomain.com/page2.htm) rather then waiting on the search engine to index them.

Tip: I do not ever recommend paying websites money to have your site submitted to search engines. That includes Yahoo's pay for inclusion service.

  1. Google - http://www.google.com/addurl/?continue=/addurl
  2. Yahoo - http://search.yahoo.com/info/submit.html - You must have or get a Yahoo ID.
  3. Yahoo Directory - http://help.yahoo.com/help/us/dir/suggest/suggest-01.html - You must have or get a Yahoo ID.
  4. Ask.com - http://static.wc.ask.com/en/docs/about/webmasters.shtml#18
  5. Bing - http://www.bing.com/webmaster/SubmitSitePage.aspx
  6. Aol.com - See dmoz.org below and this link.
  7. AltaVista - Basic Submit uses Yahoo
  8. dmoz.org - http://www.dmoz.org/add.html - Use dmoz to be included in AOL and Netscape search.
  9. Netscape - See dmoz.org above and this link.

Submit Website to Multiple Engines and Directories at One Time
  1. Submitexpress.com - http://www.submitexpress.com/submit.html - Free website submission to over 20 search engines.
  2. freewebsubmission.com - http://www.freewebsubmission.com/ - Free website submission to over 20 search engines and links to website submission pages for 50 search engines.

Submit to Bussiness Directories

Prospective clients in your area will most likely use business directories online (such as online yellow pages) to find a business in a specific category (i.e. auto repair, carpet cleaning). Therefore, you will want to submit your website to local business directories. There are usually business directories that are sponsored by your local city or county or other cities in the area. Find these and submit your business website to them. You will also want to submit your site to the following big business directories. The following directories offer free listings and include multiple cities:

  1. Yahoo! Local - http://listings.local.yahoo.com/ - Sign up for the basic listing which is free.
  2. Yahoo! Yellow Pages - Uses information from your local phone book and infoUSA. See http://help.yahoo.com/l/us/yahoo/yp/about/yp-09.html for info.
  3. yellowpages.com - http://www.yellowpages.com/advertising/update_listing_form. This is AT&T's free yellow pages website.
  4. infoUSA - http://dbupdate.infousa.com/dbupdate/startupdate?bas_request=A
  5. superpages.com - http://advertising.superpages.com/spportal/business-listing
  6. localeze.com - http://webapp.localeze.com/bizreg/Add.aspx. localeze.com claims: "We distribute our content to over 45 search sites that represent over 85% of all local searches." See about localeze for more info.
  7. Live Search Local Listing Center - https://ssl.search.live.com/listings/BusinessSearch.aspx
  8. Google Maps - http://www.google.com/local/add
  9. local.com - http://register.local.com/
  10. citysearch.com - http://national.citysearch.com/corrections
  11. yelp.com - https://biz.yelp.com/signup/
  12. MapQuest.com - http://www.mapquesthelp.com/app/forms/business_listings
  13. Yellowbook.com - http://corporate.yellowbook.com/advertise/

Submit Articles

Do you write web pages with interesting content that are like news articles? If so then you could make a simple article out of your web page and submit it to article submission sites. What is the benefit? At the end of the article you write a brief About the Author section, describing yourself and including a link to your website. This gives you traffic to your website.

Remember, though, that with article submission sites, others can take your article and put it on their website. But they are not allowed to change your article and are supposed to keep the "About the Author" section attached to the article also.

Here are what seem to be the most popular article submission sites at this time:

  1. ezinearticles.com
    http://www.ezinearticles.com - Rules - Suggested Reading about use of HTML
    Allowed: HTML Tags: bold, italics, underline, br, pre, blockquote, XMP (to display HTML code), OL, UL. Links: Total of 6 active anchor tag links. (3 links you are affiliated with, and 3 links you are not affiliated with.)
    Not Allowed: HTML tags: paragraph tag, javascript, images, font size or color, HR, H1, H2, H3.
  2. goarticles.com
    http://www.goarticles.com/ - Rules
    Allowed: HTML Tags: They recommend that you do not use any HTML Tags except for anchor tags for links.
  3. articledashboard.com
    http://www.articledashboard.com/ - Rules
    Allowed: HTML Tags: They do not mention any rules on the use of HTML tags. Most articles have none. But a few use line break, H1, and HTML character entities such as &bull; to display •
  4. isnare.com
    http://www.isnare.com/ - Rules
    Allowed: HTML Tags: They do not mention any rules on the use of HTML tags. Most articles have none. But a few use P, B, and BR.
  5. articlecity.com
    http://www.articlecity.com/ - Rules
    URLs are allowed but HTML codes are automatically stripped out.

Article Submission Sites That Allow Images

I am including the following article submission sites for one reason only: They allow you to have images in the article. They are not very popular sites, but since they allow images they can be very useful.

  1. weeno.com
    http://www.weeno.com - Rules
    Allowed: HTML Tags: CENTER, B, I, TT, HR, TABLE, colored text.
    Not Allowed: Do not link to images outside of Weeno. Instructions to submit the images to weeno.

Submit RSS Feeds

Once you have your RSS/XML file in place on your website you will then want to submit your RSS Feed to a RSS Search site, that way others will be able to find your feed when they are searching on one of these popular sites. However, before submitting your feed make sure it is accurately written by using the FEED Validator website: http://www.feedvalidator.org/

At the time of this writing, and as far as I am aware, these are the 10 most popular RSS submission sites:

To see the next 10 RSS Submission sites click the plus sign.

[+]

Submit Feed to Multiple Sites

And here are some RSS submission sites that will submit your RSS feed to multiple RSS search engines at one time. In order of popularity:

Press Release

If you have a new business, a new website, or are offering a new service within your business then you will want to announce it to the media. Here is a list of websites where you can submit your press release. Most of the Press Release websites offer a free service and a pay for service. The pay for service usually includes having your press release submitted to more news sites like Google News. However, I believe that making your website popular can be done for free, so I only recommend using the free services.

Press release websites in order of popularity:

  1. http://www.prweb.com/
  2. http://www.prleap.com/
  3. http://www.marketwire.com/
  4. http://www.pr.com/
  5. http://www.pressbox.co.uk/
  6. http://www.24-7pressrelease.com/
  7. http://www.webwire.com/
  8. http://www.newswiretoday.com/
  9. http://www.i-newswire.com/

Social Bookmarking Buttons

Personally I think all the social bookmarking sites, links and buttons are getting out of hand. There needs to be one standard bookmark button and it should automatically go to your preferred bookmarking website or program.

But as it is now, if you want your website visitors to tell others about your website you may want to add some social bookmarking buttons to your website. I feel that you should just add the most important social bookmark sites, so I will show you the code to add a button for those bookmark sites here:
Check which buttons you want on your site Highlight and copy the contents of the textbox below
Yahoo! My Web
Google
Live.com
Digg It!
del.icio.us
Technorati
Slashdot
Fark
Reddit
Squidoo
Furl
Newsvine
Blinklist
Blogmarks
StumbleUpon
Netscape

If that is not enough for you then try these websites:

Back to www.seabreezecomputers.com
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User Comments

There are 10 comments.

Displaying first 35 comments.

1. Posted By: Alias - Alisa@live.nl - January 14, 2008, 12:16 pm
this web need more information and i don't like this website yr like you understand in it ????

2. Posted By: Jeff - - January 29, 2008, 9:39 pm
It is easy

3. Posted By: qwer - - March 17, 2008, 12:39 am
Good Article, Author - Thanks!


4. Posted By: Jake - - October 5, 2009, 4:46 pm
Thanks for the Tips!

I was a little skeptical when I saw "Learn HTML" as a tip, but the stuff afterwards was interesting.



5. Posted By: old blues fan - - October 17, 2009, 6:53 pm
i think that down the road this information will be valuable to me. however at this time i am confused because i am just tackeling this area. i appreciate the way he wrote the article , but it is beyond my comprehension at this time. i look forward to coming back when i am ready. thank-you

6. Posted By: Elizabeth Sheppard - - December 22, 2009, 8:10 am
Thank you for these hints! I will definitely be using this page. It is a very good resource. I will be putting this page on Twitter, too, so more people can find out about it. Good job.

7. Posted By: amir - - June 10, 2010, 12:03 pm
You are honest and faithful, and thank you for the useful and the free information, it's the kind of you.
Thank you again and god bless you and your family, my friend.

8. Posted By: TNagle - - December 1, 2011, 8:43 am
I was looking for information on RSS feeds when I came across this site. I found the list of RSS feed directories most useful. Thanks for putting together such a good resource!



9. Posted By: netbossg - - March 27, 2013, 3:39 pm
Just a note on IrfanView:

If you hit F12 with an image open, you get drawing tools. It doesn't work if you don't have an image open. :-)
I found it by accident. I could never find it in any of the menus.

I have been using it for years and it is an excellent program. Compact, fast, many features, and free.

On the down side, I tried to buy a site license for work, but never heard back from the developer. I was willing to pay . . .

10. Posted By: ron - - April 15, 2016, 11:40 pm
FTP Manager Lite is one of the best free FTP and SFTP client software. The clean interface is super easy to use. It will perform your files transfers quickly and efficiently. It also supports FXP for superfast server to server transfers.
www.deskshare.com/ftp-manager-free.aspx