Ok, you want a website. If you can use a message board like SAAFE, you can do most of it yourself. Really.
Below here, we’re going to use some jargon (which we’ll put in italics), but it’s nothing more complicated than knowing the difference between incall and outcall. (If you don’t know that, we’d strongly recommend you find out before becoming an escort.) Even so, if it becomes a bit much, feel free to skip to another page: you don’t have to know this.
Creating your own site consists of three basic steps
- Getting the domain name
- Designing the site
- Hosting it somewhere
We can help with all three.
Getting the domain name
Like the phone system, the Internet uses long numbers to connect things. But just as you find it easier to remember people’s names and use your phone to remember their number, rather than expect people to remember 192.168.0.1 to find your site, you can have a name that people can remember. That’s the domain name.
One reason for having your own site is so that you can have your own domain name, that is have a site at
yourname.co.uk or yourname.com
A host of places (‘domain registrars‘) exist that will enable you to register your own domain name, for a fee. Registration lasts a number of years (one to ten with both .com and .co.uk names now). When that comes to an end, you’ll need to renew your registration or you could lose the domain to someone else: they’ll get all your visitors.
What name? You need to think of a name that’s not already registered by someone. (Well, you could try to buy one from its current owner, but that will be more expensive than thinking of one that’s not in use now. If they’re not actually using it, they may well let it lapse and you can get it much more easily then.) All domain registrars should have a form where you can check if the name you’ve thought of is in use.
What domain? For escorts in the UK, there are really only two choices for how your domain name should end: .co.uk and .com – anything else is only if you have more money than you know what to do with. Neither should be particularly expensive, but .co.uk is somewhat cheaper and more usual. You can also consider getting both: if you have a generic ‘place-style’ website name (like ‘LondonGFE.co.uk’, but that was registered by someone else ages ago) and you become popular as one but don’t have the other, someone else will register it and get some of ‘your’ visitors.
(Nominet, the self-appointed body behind .co.uk / .org.uk domains have created a couple of others: .me.uk and .uk – you can guess how successful they’ve been by the way that the first year of somename.uk has been offered for free to owners of somename.co.uk and neither sticks in the public’s mind yet.)
Some recent changes mean that all .co.uk domains need a working postal address even more than they did previously. (And, although there is an option to opt out of having it displayed, it only applies to individuals, not businesses – and escorts count as businesses.) If you don’t have somewhere, you can use our mail forwarding service. As well as being more expensive, a Royal Mail PO Box is no good in this context: they’ll give the ‘real address’ out on request.
Which registrar? We like one, not least because it’s not expensive, reliable and will renew domains automatically. (This has saved at least one site of ours from being lost.) We can create an account for you with them, register the domain(s) of your choice for you, set things up if you want us to do the hosting, and then transfer control to you. You’re then in complete control of your domain and if you don’t like anything we do, you can move to any other host quickly and simply without needing any action from us.
If you’ve already got a domain name you’re happy with, we should be able to work with that (beware that some registrars tie you to their expensive hosting or other services and moving may not be easy!) Just please don’t use GoDaddy – they make some bits of managing a domain more complicated than it should be.
Designing the site
We use a content management system (this is techno-talk for a program that lets you concentrate on the content of the site by automating as much as possible) called ‘WordPress’. It makes creating professional-looking sites much easier than it used to be. It’s the same software that’s used for the wordpress.com blog site and because millions of people use it, finding help with it from somewhere else is easy.
Escort sites tend to follow a basic ‘About / Services / Gallery / Prices / Contact me’ format. No, the use of that format here is not a coincidence :)
Thanks to WordPress, writing the text is 99% of the work. We can help with that, while retaining your individual voice. Or just upload something you’ve already written.
The rest, like what colours you’d like, is relatively simple. We can do many variations in seconds. More complicated work is possible, but can take longer.
Pictures are easy to upload yourself. We can do simple editing, like concealing your face or adding a ‘watermark’ to them. If you don’t want to trust us with face shots (and why should you – anyone can say they’re nice, but how do you know we won’t publish them?) then we can point you to free resources to edit them yourself.
Hosting the site
If you have a poster, you need a wall to stick it on before people can see it. It’s the same with websites except that what you need is a called a host. When someone wants to see your site, it’s the host that goes ‘here you are!’ Most domain registrars would love you to use their hosting services as well, but you don’t have to. (Conversely, some hosts will ‘give’ you a ‘free’ domain registration, but there are usually strings attached – typically high renewal fees or a high fee to transfer it if you want to move elsewhere – so don’t think it’s a bargain.)
The reason why you don’t want to go automatically with the domain registrar for hosting is that not all hosts are equally good.
Not all hosts are happy with prostitution-related sites. We are.
Some want to make you have a pointless ‘press here to enter’ page or pretend that what you’re offering isn’t prostitution. We don’t.
If the host isn’t working, no-one will be able to see your site. Even Google doesn’t work sometimes. We think our ‘uptime’ (how long sites have been running without a problem) is as good as anyone else’s and if it’s down, so are things that are important to us, so we’ll be fixing things as soon as possible.
You will see hosts that offer ‘unlimited’ space or bandwidth (how big your site is multiplied by how many times it is viewed over a particular time). As with ‘unlimited’ offers for mobile phone use, they’re either lying or about to go out of business. At the moment, we use less than 10% of the bandwidth available to us without paying more, so it’s not likely to be an issue, but if your site attracts so much traffic that it affects other people, we’ll ask you to find somewhere else (and help you do so) or ask you to cover the costs of that.
What we’re not happy hosting: the main thing is content stolen from elsewhere. We won’t ask you to send in photo ID to prove who you are, and we realise that on one level most escort sites are pretty similar, but if we spot that you’ve copied substantial quantities of text from someone else or are using someone else’s pictures, we’ll remove the offending material.
We would also not be happy with pictures that are too rude, but we reckon that if you want to have those, you’d better off selling them in a private gallery somewhere. Much the same applies to videos, mostly because they tend to be big bandwidth hogs. If it’s rude, sell it somewhere, and if it’s not, put it on YouTube or similar and put a link to it on your site.
If you want to allow people to leave comments on your site, you must use Akismet or a similar service to stop spam comments (‘Your blog is grate, and I visit it all the time while working on my site at CheapErectionDrugs….’) If you don’t, within a short while you’ll be getting ten thousand such comments a month and it will affect everyone.
Once the site is up and running
You can either leave it alone or continue to work on it. Changing things on the site’s pages is simple with the WordPress system we use. Changed your mobile number or perhaps you’ve missed a spelling misteak or too? No problem, editing takes no technical knowledge and can be done in a minute or two.
Perhaps you’d like a ‘blog’, a series of news posts? No problem. Adding a new post takes a couple of clicks, and you can write as much or as little as you like. You can also delete unwanted posts easily, so you can post that you’re going away on holiday for a few days, then delete the post on your return. No-one will know you weren’t sitting around all day waiting for calls during that time :)
What else we don’t do
Sites for agencies. See here for why not.