In the fast-paced world of college recruiting for gymnastics having your own website and social media channels is an excellent way to stand out from the crowd. This article will discuss everything that you need to know about creating a personal website for your gymnast. The process might not be as difficult or expensive as you might have thought!
Choosing Your Method Of Website Building
There are many different ways to build a website, from doing everything yourself to hiring it out and everything in between. Choosing the best method for your level of tech-savvy, availability, and financial resources will help to save you some headaches down the road. But with so many options it can be hard to know where to start.
In this article we will review the two major methods:
- Creating your own website using a simple website builder
- Hiring out your website design
1) How To Create your personal Gymnast Website
Creating your own gymnastics website has a certain feeling of dread that comes along with it. Many people are afraid of website design due to its reputation for complexity. Although website design can become very complex very quickly that can all depend on the methods that you choose to use. In this article, we will cover only the easiest methods where you will get the most bang for your buck. So just to lower everyone’s stress levels, all of the website options discussed today will not involve any coding or complex previous experience. Many large companies out there have invested millions of dollars so that we don’t have to code anymore to make a simple site.
One Universal Rule of All Website Builders
One more thing I wanted to discuss before we get into the various website builder options is the general rule of all website builders that I have worked with. Customizability always comes with complexity.
There are many themes out there and options for building a website but one universal rule I have found is that you cannot have customization without complexity. Every site will have the ability to customize some things, but making more advanced changes might not be possible. Keeping this in mind can help you make the right choice of website builders.
Are you wanting to make a lot of big changes and style things exactly how you would like? You will probably want to choose a more robust option but be prepared for it to be a little more difficult and take more time. If you do not really care too much about the design of the end product, then a more simple website option will probably be better for you.
Choosing Your Website Builder
There are hundreds of options out there for website builders so amid the sea of choices I will be reviewing the top 3 that I have used. I have personally created websites with all three of these so I think that I have a pretty good understanding of the pros and cons of each option. Keep in mind that these are only my personal experience while working with various website builders.
GoDaddy – Quick And Easy
Recommended Plan Price: $11.99 per month
Free Plan: 1-month free trial no credit card required
Approximate Total Time Commitment: 8-10 hours
Godaddy is the website builder that I have the most experience with. This option is great for creating a quick website in only a matter of hours. However, customization can be difficult at times. All of the changes that you can make come in blocks, so an example of this would be a gallery block. If you want to add a gallery there are only one or two blocks that you can use and they are sometimes difficult to customize.
This block structure adds to the speed of creating a website but cut down on the customizability. I often find myself frustrated with the features and lack of ability to customize through Godaddy. Although in the right situation this could also be a perk.
So if you want a quick and easy site to build this is probably the best option for you.
Recommended Complete GoDaddy Setup Guide:
Wix – More Control And More Complexity
Recommended Plan Price: $16 per month
Free Plan: Unlimited, but has ads across the site and no custom domain available
Approximate Total Time Commitment: 10-14 hours
Wix is another great option for anyone looking to create a site. From my experience with this builder, there is much more freedom to customize your site as you see fit. Just like the other two options here you can start with a base theme and modify from there to save yourself some time. Unlike the other two themes, there are no blocks to have to deal with customizing around. You can add individual elements like a button here, or a photo there, as you see fit.
Having so much customization helps this option to stand out from the others by being more easily adaptable. However, I think that it could be argued this website builder is a bit more complex than the other ones on this list.
If you want a more robust site with more customization and complexity then this is probably the choice you should go with.
Recommended Complete Wix Setup Guide:
Squarespace – A good balance
Recommended Plan Price: $16 per month
Free Plan: 14-day free trial no credit card required
Approximate Total Time Commitment: 10-12 hours
I think that Squarespace is a good balance between the simplicity of Godaddy and the complexity of Wix. Squarespace still works with these same building blocks method that Godaddy uses, but I think that it improves on their method. Whereas GoDaddy has very set blocks that can only be adjusted in a few ways, Squarespace allows you to make more customizations to your blocks to make them look the way that you would like.
Since Squarespace was able to find this balance I would say it is my number 1 choice for making a personal website for your gymnast. The only issue that I had with this builder was that I sometimes had a hard time working my way around the menus to find what I wanted to edit. I think that was partially just because I was used to using Godaddy, so this might have been a bias towards what I was used to.
Recommended Complete Squarespace Setup Guide:
Setting Up Your Custom Domain
After you have created your website you will need to purchase and connect your domain. Your domain will help recruiters to find your website so try to make it something with your gymnast’s name in it if possible. Domains can vary depending on which website builder you are using, but they are normally very affordable around 10 – 20 dollars a year.
Make sure to connect a domain to your site because it will help you seem more professional and also help to make sure that your site is live and easily found on Google. That way when someone searches your gymnast’s names the site will come up.
How To Set Up A Custom Domain on these different builders:
- How to purchase and set up your domain on GoDaddy
- How to purchase and set up your domain on Wix
- How to purchase and set up your domain on Squarespace
2) Hiring Out Your Custom Gymnast Website Design
Building out your gymnast’s website can be great for many people, however many others find that the task is too time-consuming or irritating. If you do not want to deal with the stresses of running your own website you are not alone. It can be a lot to handle and upkeep…
There is nothing wrong with having a professional build and manage your website for you. This option can often save you hours of headaches working through various tech problems that you might face on your gymnast’s website. Sometimes it can be great to just offload all of that onto someone else so that you can focus on the many other facets of college applications and the recruiting process.
Cheaper than you might think
Websites have a long history of being a very expensive investment, but with the raise in demand pricing has come down. The most website you can have built for a fairly affordable price, especially when you factor in the hours that it would be taking you to create the website yourself. You might even be saving money by hiring out your website design, and you will definitely be saving yourself some stress.