BaseKit is a product that has been developed to help people simplify the way that they make websites and with over 100,000 active users on their platform they’ve proven their worth as a website building platform. I want to walk you through the features that BaseKit offers and provide you a tutorial of how you can create your website using BaseKit.
For those of you who’ve never used or seen BaseKit to develop your website I wanted to you some of the things that you can do to build a website quickly and get it up and running without a lot of extra effort or pain.
Step 1: Create an account with BaseKit
BaseKit uses a subscription based model currently for their website building platform but the fees for it are very small and hosted in the cloud through Amazon Web Services (AWS) and once you’ve done this please proceed to Step 2.
Step 2: Get familiar with BaseKit’s user interface
Basekit has done a good job of focusing on user interface design making it more intuitive then other products in the market today. See what I mean by having a look below.
As you can see the user interface is divided into a main area for adding, removing and modifying changes to your website using a lot of drag and drop functionality.
The top navigation splits up your choices into 4 areas including “Design” which focuses on helping you design the look and feel of your website, “Preview” which allows you to see the changes as you make them, “Themes” which gives you the choice of themes to use on your website, “Manage” which allows you to add some more advanced things to your website like SEO, databases, users and domains and more and “Publish” that gives you the control to publish your website. There is a very logical and common sense approach here to developing a website that I think really helps even the most beginner person come up to speed fast.
Step 3: Creating Pages for your website using BaseKit
Naturally because a website consists of web pages this is something that you are going to need to know in order to get your website online. In order to create a page you are first going to need to be in the “Design” section of the application and select “Create Page” as seen below under the “+ ADD” option.
Once you’ve clicked on this option you should see that you are greeted with a pop-up that asks you for the Page Title, Page URL (this seems similar to permalinks in WordPress, just done a little differently), it gives you the option to set it as the homepage, set the Menu Title and show it in the navigation menu and make the page active so that everyone can see it. It also gives you the option to save the page as a draft or make it inactive as you can see below.
When you click the “Create Page” button at the bottom of this pop-up you will notice that it has created the new page using the page attributes set in the screenshot above and also look at how the Page URL attribute has been added to your BaseKit site’s URL on the newly created page which is customizable to your needs.
Now that you’ve got a web page created you can go ahead and use some of the content choices in the “Design” section of BaseKit including Forms, Social Media, Text and Images, Templates and other content related elements like comments, column layouts and google maps to design your website.
Lastly I wanted to quickly go through how you can change and make modifications to some of the parts of your website using BaseKit including the Theme Colors, Theme Fonts and the Background of your BaseKit website. At first these options may seem a bit hidden if you don’t know where to look for them but once you have found them it’s hard to ignore how simple they make editing your BaseKit website without having to write a single line of code. Traditionally if you wanted to change the background or theme fonts and even the theme colors you would have to code this using CSS and HTML but that’s not the issue here. Simply select the colors, fonts, page width and click save. It’s a very useful feature of BaseKit because you don’t need to know or write code to get it working… it just works!
As you can see there is a lot of functionality that exists even in creating something as simple as a web page using BaseKit but if anything I hope this shows you that you can create a website without needing to know how to code as pretty much most things can be done through the user interface in BaseKit.
In my next article I am going to get into the “Themes” section of BaseKit where we will walk through how to work with the themes that BaseKit provides by default.
Attention: The newest version of BaseKit is scheduled for a September 5, 2011. release.