an idea, and then website

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I've seen so many stories of people who've had a good idea and then turned it into a decent web company that it makes me wonder if I had an idea how would I do all this stuff?
Firstly I freely admit that I know nothing about HTML, pHp, .ASP, Jscript or SQL. I am a scientist, and I'm 100%sure that most of the non-programming population know nothing either.
So, say I wanted a website, with shopping cart and login, and forums ... how would I do it?
The obvious thing is to buy it. Could be £X000 pounds I suppose. Is there a more clever thing to do than to just throw money at it?
 
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Simple things I could do on dreamweaver, like a home/hobby site.

But I read somewhere that a nice neat tidy raw HTML is better as it loads faster and is efficient. If I was selling some stuff or a service then I'd want people to see that it was a serious site.

Then there's logging in and paying and automation and generating reports and automated email confirmations and storing all that, and making sure it's secure. Man, that's a lot of work! Even if I say had 30 customers a week, not a great deal, but it would build up over time ... it has to be good to begin with.

So these sites that just spring-up looking darn good have paid the 10,000 pounds or whatever for a pro to do it?

Or if I want to try it myself then I need to know HTML, CSS, jscript, MySQL, php?
 
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ok. thanks for all the input on this.

I need to get this straight in my head.

For an ecommerce shop what has happened is the following:- a) buy the template b) modify it with your own design a bit c) the template contains the shopping cart so need to fiddle with that d) get webhost with mysql and ssl e) get merchant bank and gateway.

then you're away!

is that about right?


I've started learning a bit of HTML. It looks quite straightfoward, just need to focus a bit on it. That site on w3schools is very good. I got loads a time coz my work contract finished 2 weeks ago (science career is hell btw).
 
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