Japan Web Site

Build a web site in Japan

Living in Japan is no barrier to building a web site. It's easy! Just follow these simple steps.

  1. Sign up for a web host and a domain name.

    Expect to pay a total $25-$150 for a year of hosting and domain name registration.

    It pays to shop around for a package that suits your needs. We recommend combining:

    domains from

    Go Daddy $1.99 Domains

    with hosting by


  2. Buy a book about learning HTML. "HTML & XHTML: Definitive Guide" from the O'Reilly series is highly recommended. It's available from Amazon Japan and usually ships within 24 hours of ordering. You can read reviews in English at Amazon.com.

    For an overview of HTML or for quick refererence the w3schools site is a goldmine of free information.

  3. Download a free HTML editor and write some HTML.

    We recommend HTML Kit for Windows and TextWrangler for OS X.

  4. Set your domain name servers if needed.

    If you buy your hosting and domain name separately you will have to set your domain's name servers manually so visitors can connect to your site.

    Your web host will provide your name server details (usually two addresses like ns1.mydomainserver.com and ns2.mydomainserver.com). You should be able to set the domain name servers by logging into your domain name registrar's account.

    It can take a while for new sites to be recognised across the internet so don't panic if you can't connect to your web host for the first day or two.

  5. Download a free File Transfer Protocol (FTP) program.

    We recommend SmartFTP for Windows and CyberDuck for OS X.

    Your web host should provide all the information you need to connect to their servers via FTP.

  6. Upload your files to your web hosting account via FTP.

    Usually you will place your files into a directory called something like "httpdocs"or "public_html".

  7. Connect to your site with your web browser.

NOTE: If you want to include Japanese characters in your HTML, you can use the code below as a frame-work and save your files as UTF-8 encoded. Your HTML editor should give a choice of encodings (often found under File - Save As - Options).
<!DOCTYPE HTML PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.01 Transitional//EN"
		<meta http-equiv="Content-Type" content="text/html; charset=UTF-8">
		<meta name="language" content="Japanese">

	<!-- Your code goes here -->


If you use this code, Japanese enabled browsers should automatically detect and display Japanese unicode.

If you want your site to be accessable by Japanese cell-phones save your files as Shift-JIS encoded instead of UTF-8.
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