Build a Website with Rapidweaver for Mac
4.7 (9 ratings)
Instead of using a simple lifetime average, Udemy calculates a course's star rating by considering a number of different factors such as the number of ratings, the age of ratings, and the likelihood of fraudulent ratings.
49 students enrolled
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Build a Website with Rapidweaver for Mac

Take control of your business marketing by building and managing your own website
4.7 (9 ratings)
Instead of using a simple lifetime average, Udemy calculates a course's star rating by considering a number of different factors such as the number of ratings, the age of ratings, and the likelihood of fraudulent ratings.
49 students enrolled
Created by Hamish Erskine
Last updated 4/2017
English
Current price: $12 Original price: $50 Discount: 76% off
11 hours left at this price!
30-Day Money-Back Guarantee
Includes:
  • 9 hours on-demand video
  • Full lifetime access
  • Access on mobile and TV
  • Certificate of Completion
What Will I Learn?
  • Build and publish your first website
  • Create a home page that helps convert visitors into customers
  • Achieve intermediate level web building skills
  • Know how to find all the addons you need
  • Know where to find everything you need to extend your skills to advanced level
View Curriculum
Requirements
  • Students need a mac computer
  • Rapidweaver from Realmac Software
  • A budget to purchase addons, web hosting and domain registration
  • No previous web building experience is required
Description

Web design as a life-skill
In today’s world, the ability to build and manage your own website is a life-skill that can revolutionise your business if you have one, or open up amazing doors of opportunity, enabling you to share your passion with the world. It is a skill that I learned when I wanted to launch my first business, and it proved to be the key to my business success, giving me a huge advantage over my local competitors.

Who is this course for?
This course is for you if you own a mac computer and want to build a website using Rapidweaver. Rapidweaver is the best web design software for Mac. It makes web design easy and accessible for the amateur. Importantly, you don’t have to learn to code. I will show you how to build a website with the drag-and-drop simplicity of 'stacks'. This course is aimed primarily at those who want to build and manage websites for their own use. That includes:

  • Business owners who want to attract more customers
  • Self-employed workers like Plumbers, Electricians, Artists, Authors, or Entrepreneurs
  • Anyone with a hobby or passion they want to share with the world. 
  • Or it might be that you’re an employee of a small business and your boss has asked you to make a website. 

As I said at the beginning, in today’s world, being able to build a website is an important life-skill. The applications of it are limitless.

What you will be able to do at the end of it?
This is a beginners course that requires no previous web building experience. At the end of this course:

  • You will be able to build and publish a simple website
  • You will understand important considerations in choosing a domain or web address for your business
  • You will understand key elements that make a website convert visitors into customers
  • You will know how to find whatever addons you require to meet your particular website needs
  • You will be able to spend your website budget wisely, identifying the addons you need without wasting money on ones you'll never actually use
  • You will know where to find tutorials on advanced Rapidweaver topics in order to take your skills to the next level, including integration of eCommerce solutions, Content Management Systems (CMS), and Search Engine Optimisation (SEO).

Should you wish to start a new career building websites as a business, this course could be the start that you need.

How is the course structured?
There are 8 sections to this course:

  1. Introduction
  2. Start building using Rapidweaver's built-in page types
    In this section you'll gain an overview of Rapidweaver's interface and tools, and learn how to add several built-in page-types. These pages will be replaced in a later section after adding the Stacks plugin, so web building will only be taken to a very basic level in this section.
  3. Choose a Web Hosting company
    I'll guide you through a list of top recommended companies.
  4. Choose your own Internet Domain
    I'll guide you through various important considerations to help you choose the right address for your website.
  5. Manage your hosting and domain, and publish your website
    You may choose a different hosting company to me, but I'll give you a brief tour of the control panel for my web hosting and demonstrate how to obtain your publishing details and input them into Rapidweaver's publishing settings.
  6. Enhance Rapidweaver using Addons
    The reason Rapidweaver is such a powerful web building solution is that it provides a platform for third-party developers around the world to create their own addons. There are now over 1,000 addons available and in this section I guide you through the various different categories to choose from.
  7. Continue Building using Stacks
    This is the longest and most detailed section, in which you will follow me step-by-step as I create a new and better website for my plumbing business. If you keep apace with each lesson and build your own website, by the end of this section you will have a website of your own sufficient for many types of business use.
  8. Course Wrap-Up
    In this lesson I will show you how to extend your Rapidweaving skills further beyond the scope of this beginners' course. I will introduce Search Engine Optimisation. I will show you where to find courses and addons for advanced topics like integrating eCommerce solutions and Content Management Systems. I will give you an overview of graphics and video apps that you may find useful in your web building projects. I will show you why building your own website gives you such an advantage over your competitors who mostly outsource their web design. And I will give you an overview of strategies I have used to advertise my business and attract visitors to my website.

Course Support Page
Throughout the course I refer you to my Rapidweaver support page on a website that I have created as an informative support to my Udemy students. This page contains a detailed description of 'All Things Rapidweaver', together with a multitude of links to help you find all the tools you need to excel in your Rapidweaving skills. I also refer you to the Rapidweaver Community website where you can find the most comprehensive library of addons as well as to the Rapidweaver Forum. If you have questions about any of my lessons I encourage you to message me via Udemy and I will try to answer your questions or add Q&A Videos if appropriate. For general questions about Rapidweaver or specific addons, I encourage you to contact the specific developer, or make use of the Rapidweaver Forum where you will find enthusiastic users only too eager to answer your questions.

What are the requirements?
Rapidweaver is a mac-only web design app, so you need:

  • to own a mac computer running a recent version of Mac OS X
  • to purchase Rapidweaver from Realmac Software. It costs £79 GBP or $99 USD, but you can also download a free trial version to start with
  • to buy web hosting from a hosting company and register a domain so that you can publish your website. Prices vary according to company, but start from about £20 for the first year.
  • to buy the Stacks plugin from Yourhead Software, which costs about $50. Without this, you can build a good website with just the Rapidweaver app, especially if you know a bit of html. Stacks is such a revolutionary enhancement that I would recommend this as a must-have for most users. It enables you to build your website with the simplicity of drag-and-drop stack elements and no coding expertise.
  • a budget for additional addons. As much as possible, I show you addons with a demo version that you can 'try before you buy' in order to help you make best use of your website budget, and avoid wasting money on addons that you won't actually use. A recommended website budget will depend on your particular requirements, but it is certainly helpful to have another two or three hundred pounds or dollars to spare. If your budget is tight you can create a website within your budget and improve it with more addons as and when additional funds become available. In addition to the searchable addons library at Rapidweaver Community, on my own support website I have created a RWstacks page that is my own searchable stacks library. You can filter stacks by several categories, including price, and pick out the free ones if you're on a tight budget. This page is a work in progress, so is not yet as complete as the one at Rapidweaver Community, but I hope you will find it helpful.


Who is the target audience?
  • Mac users who wants to build and manage their own website
  • Business owners who want to attract more customers
  • Self-employed workers who want to market their products or services
  • People with an interest or passion they want to share with the world
Students Who Viewed This Course Also Viewed
Curriculum For This Course
40 Lectures
08:56:26
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Introduction
2 Lectures 15:12

In this lesson you will learn:

  • Who this course is for
  • What you will be able to do at the end of it
  • How the course is structured
  • What the requirements are
Preview 06:04

In this lesson, you will learn:

  • who I am
  • my background as a teacher
  • how I retrained and started my own plumbing business
  • how building a website has help me achieve success in my business
  • how my web building skills have helped me share my interests and passions
Preview 09:08
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Start Building using Rapidweaver's Built-In Page Types
6 Lectures 01:18:08

In this lesson, you will learn:

  • how to create a new Rapidweaver project
  • how to add a Styled Text page
  • how to add text and an image to the page
  • how to use the text formatting toolbar
  • how to preview your page
  • how to change the theme of your website
  • the names of the different parts of a web page
Preview 11:53

In this lesson, you will receive an overview of Site Settings, including:

  • the General tab where you can set a site title, a site slogan, a copyright notice, enter your email address and site URL, and drag in graphic images such as web clip, favicon, site logo and site banner
  • the Code tab, where you can paste in code such as Google Analytics code, for example
  • the Master Style tab where you can choose theme style settings such as colour settings and other options provided as part of your chosen theme
  • the Notes tab where you can add any notes that will not be published but will serve as reminders to you about choices you have made during your web design
  • the Publishing tab where you can enter FTP settings for uploading your website to your online web space

and you will learn how to preview your website in Safari.

Preview 13:33

In this lesson, you will learn how to add and configure the following built-in page types:

  • Contact Form
  • Photo Album
  • Blog
  • Offsite 
  • iFrame
  • HTML Sitemap

My introduction to the Blog page type includes a brief overview of simple remote blogging solutions. I also introduce you to my own Rapidweaver support website.

Add Various Built-In Page Types
18:01

In this lesson, you will learn:

  • how to add content to the Sidebar tab of the Page Inspector
  • several ways of formatting sidebar content, including copying and pasting pre-formatted content, use of Rapidweaver's Format menu, and use of simple html formatting commands 
  • how to add code either to an individual page using the Page Inspector, or to all pages using Site Settings
  • how to change theme style settings for an individual page without it affecting every page



    Page Inspector - Sidebar, Code and Styles tabs
    16:03

    In this lesson, you will learn how to:

    • configure the settings in the General tab of the Page Inspector
    • organise and choose options for the Navigation menu
    • assign a folder name and filename for a page that determine its URL
    • override site settings for the banner, title, slogan and footer for an individual page
    • add a browser title in the Meta Data section of the General tab
    • configure settings in the Meta Tags tab of the Page Inspector
    • add a Description Meta Tag to a page
    • add additional meta tags, both to an individual page, and site-wide
    • learn how to configure your website's listing on search engines




    Page Inspector - General tab, Navigation and Meta Tags
    16:35

    In this lesson you will learn:

    • how to ask me questions about this course
    • how to give me feedback and suggestions
    Questions and Feedback
    02:03
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    Choose a web hosting company
    3 Lectures 15:16

    In this lesson, you will:

    • learn why you need to buy web hosting and register an internet domain
    • learn why you should choose Linux hosting, not Windows hosting
    • start exploring web hosting companies as recommended by Tech Radar, an independent review site
    • look at 123-reg which is named the Best Value Web Hosting company
    Preview 05:40

    In this lesson, you will learn:

    • what is meant by Wordpress hosting and why it is not the correct choice for Rapidweaver users
    • the two ways of creating a Wordpress site and how Rapidweaver is different from Wordpress
    • reasons why I prefer Rapidweaver
    Rapidweaver vs. Wordpress
    04:37

    In this lesson, you will:

    • consider 1&1.com who receive Tech Radar's recommendation as Best Small Business Hosting company
    • learn why location of a hosting company's web servers and their proximity to you and your customers is an important consideration
    Best Small Business Hosting and Web Host Location
    04:59
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    Choose your own internet domain
    2 Lectures 16:54

    In this lesson, you will:

    • learn how to check the availability of any domain choice and how to register it if it is available
    • how domains vary by price
    • the significance of the domain extension, and how to check what each one is used for
    Preview 07:10

    In this lesson, you will think through additional  factors that might affect your choice of domain, including:

    • match between domain and business name
    • readability and type-ability
    • whether it is catchy and memorable
    • SEO keywords
    • length
    • future growth
    • business saleability
    Additional important factors to consider
    09:44
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    Manage your hosting and domain and publish your website
    2 Lectures 15:59

    In this lesson, you will learn:

    • the principles of how to login to your web host's control panel (the detail will depend on your choice of web hosting company)
    • how to set your DNS settings correcting so that your domain points to your hosting space
    • how to copy and paste your hosting account's FTP settings into Rapidweaver's Publishing settings
    • how to publish your website from Rapidweaver and then browse to your online website
    Preview 10:28

    In this lesson, you will follow a brief tour of my web host's Control Panel, highlighting several options including:

    • domain privacy
    • web forwarding
    • changing passwords
    • payment priority
    • hosting manager
    • File Manager enabling you to delete or manage files that have been published to your online space
    Exploring your hosting Control Panel
    05:31
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    Enhance Rapidweaver using Addons
    7 Lectures 01:27:26

    In this lesson:

    • you will be introduced to the Rapidweaver Community, which is the official home of Rapidweaver addons
    • you will browse through the several of the pages at Rapidweaver Community including the Tutorials page and the Rapidweaver Forum page
    • you will be encourage to explore further in your own time
    Preview 04:20

    In this lesson, you will:

    • begin to explore the different types of addons for Rapidweaver, beginning with themes
    • learn what is meant by Responsive Web Design and see how a responsive website adapts to the browser width
    • visit the websites of two different theme developers who feature at Rapidweaver Community
    • learn how to install a demo version of a theme
    • learn how to use Rapidweaver's Addons manager
    • begin to explore the theme style settings for Themeflood's Volcano theme
    Themes and Responsive web design
    13:08

    In this lesson, you will:

    • learn that a plugin adds a new page type to Rapidweaver
    • receive an overview of various plugins available at Rapidweaver Community
    Plugins
    09:29

    In this lesson, you will:

    • learn how the Stacks Plugin from Yourhead Software allows you to create a multi-purpose Stacks page using drag-and-drop elements know as stacks
    • see a demonstration of several of the stack elements that come built-in with the Stacks Plugin, including the text stack, image stack, two column stack, markdown stack and html stack
    • receive an introduction to markdown text formatting
    • learn how to embed a YouTube video into an html stack 
    The Stacks Plugin
    16:37

    In this lesson, you will receive an introduction to several third-party stacks developers and a demonstration of some of their stacks, including:

    • Doobox and their HTML contact stack and Obscure Email stack
    • CosCulture and their Facebook Stack
    • Joe Workman and his Houdini Stack which enables you to place stacks in the sidebar or footer
    • Big White Duck and their Pin Stack that enables you to make stacks fixed when you scroll down the page
    Third-party stacks
    14:26

    In this lesson, you will:

    • receive an overview of projects available at Rapidweaver Community
    • see that Rapidweaver projects are sometimes provided for free, usually to demonstrate use of a premium addon and facilitate its implementation
    • learn how the development Foundation and Foundry, that allow you to build your own theme using stacks, have led Web Designers to offer Foundation-based or Foundry-based projects. Purchasing this kind of Project is like buying a website-on-a-plate that you simply have to customise to your own use.
    Projects
    13:02

    In this lesson, you will learn:

    • how to install a snippet as a downloadable addon
    • how to use Rapidweaver's Snippets tool to create and collect a library of code snippets
    • to examine Rapidweaver projects in order to examine and experiment with code snippets used 
    • how to use Font Awesome icons in Rapidweaver, and find a Font Awesome cheatsheet
    • how to add social icons using code snippets
    Snippets
    16:24
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    Continue building using stacks
    13 Lectures 03:43:58

    In this lesson, you will:

    • follow my choice of a new theme
    • see what features are important to me in choosing a theme
    • learn more about theme options


      Preview 14:33

      In this lesson, you will:

      • watch how I begin to rebuild my home page using stacks
      • learn how you can group stacks together into a partial which facilitates repeated use of a particular layout
      • learn how to set margins
      • learn how to use the FAQ2 stack from Doobox
      • learn how to use the Locker stack from Joe Workman
      Rebuild the home page using stacks and configure the main content area
      16:12

      In this lesson, you will:

      • learn how each element within the footer can be edited or removed
      • learn how to add custom content to the footer using the Houdini stack from Joe Workman
      • see how I turn my custom footer content into a partial for repeated use on other pages 
      • learn how the footer can be formatted differently for different devices
      Configure the page footer
      16:48

      In this lesson, you will learn various different ways of adding a static banner, including:

      • adding a banner to Site Settings
      • adding an override banner to the Page Inspector
      • adding one of the theme's built-in banners by placing a code snippet in the sidebar
      • adding a banner image to the Resources folder and referencing it with a code snippet in the sidebar
      • adding a banner image using the Extra Content Plus stack
      Add a Static Banner
      15:02

      In this lesson, you will learn :

      • how to use the Freestyle Banner stack and receive an overview of various enhanced banner options
      • learn the importance of the 'above the fold' region of the home page
      Enhanced banner options
      19:00

      In this lesson you will learn:

      • how to add a video to the sidebar
      • the importance of video for improving website conversion
      Add video to the sidebar
      14:58

      In this lesson, you will learn:

      • how to create a partial for displaying customer reviews
      • the importance of reviews for improving website conversion
      Add reviews using partials
      18:38

      In this lesson, you will learn:

      • the best and worst colours to use for call to action buttons
      • how to find and apply a good website colour scheme
      • the importance of colours for improving website conversion
      Choose a website colour scheme
      17:55

      In this lesson, you will learn how to various types of hyperlinks, including:

      • external URL hyperlinks
      • internal page hyperlinks
      • links to specific places on a web page
      • telephone hyperlinks
      • email hyperlinks
      Preview 18:41

      In this lesson, you will learn:

      • how to add and configure the Like It stack by Joe Workman
      • how to add and configure the Share It stack by Joe Workman
      • how to configure social buttons to open your own social profile pages
      • how to configure social buttons as sharing buttons
      Add Social and Like It Buttons
      19:21

      In this lesson, you will learn:

      • how to duplicate and modify an existing web page
      • how to search for different image gallery stacks that are available for Rapidweaver
      • how to install and configure the GalleryPro stack by Stacks4Stacks
      • how to change the extension of a webpage from .html to .php
      Add a Gallery page using Stacks
      19:38

      In this lecture, you will learn:

      • how to add and configure a blog page on your website using Rapidweaver's built-in blog plugin
      • how to install the Blog Enhancement Kit in order to enhance your blog posts with sharing buttons, estimated reading time and more. 
      • about remote blogging solutions that exist for Rapidweaver
      • strategies for making effective use of a blog within a business website such as nurturing and maintaining relationships with your customers
      Add a Blog page
      19:25

      In this lesson, you will:

      • learn how to create a new Google account
      • learn how to sign up for Google Analytics
      • learn how to add Google Analytics tracking code to your website
      • receive a brief tour of my own Google Analytics account
      • see examples of what Analytics can show about website visitors and their website interactions
      Add Google Analytics
      13:47
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      Course Wrap-Up
      5 Lectures 01:23:33

      In this lesson, you will:

      • receive an introduction to search engine optimisation (SEO)
      • learn how to use Rapidweaver's built-in Health Check tool
      • learn how to add a browser title and description metatag to each page
      • learn how to use the SEO-Rx stack from Chillidog Software
      • learn how to optimise images for the web and add alt tags and descriptive filenames
      • learn how to use the RapidBot2 plugin from Foreground to configure the robots.txt file
      Preview 19:22

      In this lesson, you will:

      • be directed to advanced topics listed at hamisherskine.net/rapidweaver
      • receive an overview of courses available at RapidweaverCommunity.com to extend your Rapidweaving skills further, including SEO for Rapidweaver, CMS for Rapidweaver, Foundation, Foundry, and Advanced Topics
      • receive an overview of addons available for Rapidweaver, including CMS solutions and eCommerce solutions
      • receive an overview of apps that support web building, including FTP clients, graphics and video apps



      Overview of courses, addons and apps to extend your Rapidweaving skills
      19:02

      In this lesson, you will:

      • learn why building your own website gives you such an advantage over your competitors who mostly outsource their web design
      • receive an overview of how my plumbing website has evolved and changed over the years, as a demonstration of the evolutionary process
      • be encouraged to expect great results from your website as it adapts to the changes in your business or circumstances
      The Evolution of your Website
      19:55

      In this lesson, you will:

      • see the real Google Analytics data for visitors to my plumbing website since I launched my business
      • receive an overview of the strategies I have used to attract visitors to my website, and how my strategies have changed over time
      • learn the importance of paid advertising methods, especially in the beginning
      • see the dramatic increase in visitors that can be achieved through SEO over time.
      Attracting visitors to your website
      19:52

      In this lesson:

      • I thank you for taking this course
      • I welcome your reviews, feedback and suggestions for improvements to my course
      • I remind you to make use of the Rapidweaver Forum
      • I welcome your questions and your future stories of how building websites helps you
      Conclusion
      05:22
      About the Instructor
      Hamish Erskine
      4.7 Average rating
      9 Reviews
      49 Students
      1 Course
      Self-employed business owner and instructor

      After a 17 year career as a school mathematics teacher, I became self-employed in 2011 when I retrained as a plumber and launched my plumbing business, 'Hamish the Plumber'. Realising that I needed a website, I decided to learn how to build my own, rather than pay a professional to make one for me. That decision rapidly gave me the advantage I needed over my local competitors. My business took off quickly, and within two years I ranked as Google's top plumber for my city. Another year later, I featured in all the British newspapers, on the radio and on billboards as part of a British government campaign, modelling the line 'Business is flowing now that customers can find me online'. Research had shown that 40 percent of sole trader businesses in the UK still had no website. Impressed by my plumbing website, my Google ranking, and my 5-star customer reviews, a government department headhunted me to help British businesses 'Do More Online'.

      My experiences led me to the conclusion that running a profitable plumbing business is as much about good marketing as about good plumbing. While running my business, I have actively tried to learn all I can about successful online marketing, and have spent more money sharpening my marketing skills than I originally spent retraining as a plumber. Because in my plumbing business I market my time, which is not a scalable commodity, my marketing skills have outgrown my plumbing business. Creating online courses on Udemy is a return to education that allows me to share the skills and experiences I have learned through five years of running a 5-star rated business. It also combines my long-term hobby of tinkering with my mac computer.

      I grew up in Scotland. As a 14 year old studying at Fettes College, Edinburgh's top private school, a career's test recommended plumbing as a possible match. My father was infuriated, exclaiming 'I expect you to be more than a plumber'. I went on to gain a degree in Mechanical Engineering from Bristol University, one of England's top universities, followed by my teaching certification as a secondary school mathematics teacher. I taught mostly in the country of Yemen, returning to the UK in 2009. After a further 2 years' teaching in England, I decided it was time for a change. Thirty years had passed since that careers test when I actually retrained as a plumber. Five subsequent years of running a successful plumbing business have proved to be the missing piece of the puzzle, enabling me to find my calling.

      Now as more than a plumber, 'Build a Website with Rapidweaver' is my first Udemy course. An effective website that converts visitors into customers should be the centrepiece of any effective business marketing strategy. In this course I share the skills that propelled my plumbing business success and made me a model for British businesses to follow and 'Do More Online'. I look forward to creating additional courses on marketing-related topics in the future.