Creating Dynamic Website Content with PHP - MySQL

Written by Don Beavers


Fresh website content for your visitors can be of real benefit when attempting to generate repeat traffic. Most webmasters, however, just don’t have enough spare time to frequently update or rebuild their pages manually. If your web site hosting company provides free access to PHP and MySQL, this article will show you how to combine those two open source tools and replace a portion of your websites’ static content with frequently changing dynamic content.

Why do you need dynamic content for your website?

Static pages on a website eventually become “stale” and visitor traffic can fall significantly over time. The drop in traffic can be attributed to these primary factors:

1) The reluctance of search engines to include and display your potentially “out of date” pages in their search results,

2) The finite number of other subject related websites that would be willing to link to your information on a specific topic, and

3) Visitors that learn to view your static website with a “been there, done that” attitude.

Creating and maintaining a web site requires a significant investment in time and resources. Loosing repeat visitors diminishesrepparttar value of your investment. Without repeat traffic it is virtually impossible for a website to be a continuing success.

How can you add dynamic content without having to purchase expensive software?

One proven (and easy to implement) method of creating dynamic content for your website is by rotating information on key, higher traffic web pages using PHP with a MySQL database. Rotating content can takerepparttar 142070 form of a series of rotating articles, a rotating group of product listings, or even a simple “thought forrepparttar 142071 day”. What is important is that your clients and visiting search engines find new and interesting information each time they visit your website.

As an example of dynamic content creation, we will build a system that rotates information about a group of products onrepparttar 142072 main page of a hypothetical retail sales web site that markets widgets. Our goal is to present information about a different type or model of widget available for purchase whenever a consumer visitsrepparttar 142073 shopping web site.

Step One: Create a content table to hold your widget data.

There are a couple of options for storingrepparttar 142074 data to be displayed in your dynamic content rotation. The first option would be to create a new database, or perhaps simply add a table in an existing product database that will holdrepparttar 142075 information that you wish to display.

Let’s take five theoretical widget products and design a table as follows:

+------+-----------------------+ | item | product | +------+-----------------------+ | 1 | Plastic Widgets | | 2 | Metal Widgets | | 3 | Wooden Widgets | | 4 | Rubber Widgets | | 5 | Stone Widgets | +------+-----------------------+

1-a) Create your table withrepparttar 142076 following SQL statement:

CREATE TABLE `content_table` ( `item` int(4) NOT NULL auto_increment, `product` varchar(10) NOT NULL default '', KEY `item` (`item`) ) TYPE=MyISAM AUTO_INCREMENT=6 ;

This table contains two fields. The first is an item number andrepparttar 142077 second is a description field that will holdrepparttar 142078 product name and features. Note: You can add fields to your actual table including: an image URL field, shopping cart direct purchase URL field, product page filed, etc.

1-b) Insertrepparttar 142079 example data into your new table as follows:

INSERT INTO `content_table ` VALUES (1, ' Plastic Widgets'); INSERT INTO `content_table ` VALUES (2, ' Metal Widgets'); INSERT INTO `content_table ` VALUES (3, ' Wooden Widgets'); INSERT INTO `content_table ` VALUES (4, ' Rubber Widgets'); INSERT INTO `content_table ` VALUES (5, ' Stone Widgets');

How To Start An Internet Business – Designing For Usefulness

Written by Halstatt Pires


The first step to starting any Internet business is conducting keyword research to determine if there is any interest in your idea. Once you identify a need, it’s time to consider what your site should look like.

What Is The Goal?

In consideringrepparttar look of your site, you first need to determine what elements are needed to promote your service or product. There are endless books, forums and people with adamant opinions onrepparttar 142027 subject. Some opine a site should be all about linking, while others opine creating a community through message boards isrepparttar 142028 key. A third set righteously point out a site should be slick or cool, while a fourth group will argue justrepparttar 142029 opposite. So, who is right and who is wrong? The answer is…all of them.

When developing a site,repparttar 142030 goal is actually very simple. Your site should be useful. That’s it,repparttar 142031 big secret. The problem, of course, is “useful” means different things for different sites.

A site that provides a service to businesses, such as consulting, should focus on content and linking. A site that promotes something related to entertainment should have an element of cool and have message boards to discuss rumors, etc. A site that sells products should focus on linking and loading quickly, i.e., a simple, clean design. The point is that each site is unique and there is no universal answer. Whateverrepparttar 142032 particular direction of your site, simply make sure it is useful to your users.

Site Examples

Let’s use Google as our example. What does Google do? It gives usersrepparttar 142033 ability to search and find relevant information. So, shouldrepparttar 142034 home page of Google look “cool”? Should it have a lot of content on how to conduct searches? Should it have forums to create a sense of community? No,repparttar 142035 home page would be most useful if it simply let you search without bombarding you with a lot of clutter. Indeed,repparttar 142036 Google home page is just that.

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