How To Make A Website – Understanding Domain Names And Hosting Accounts
One of the questions often asked by people interested in making money at home is, do I really need to know how to make a website?
Let me just be abruptly clear by saying "in order to make money online you do need to know how to make a website."
I can understand and appreciate that you may be reading this right now, and the thought of making a website could be terrifying. (As when I got started I had some of those very same fears) But in order to successfully run a business online and continue to see growth in your craft, than you will need to understand how to make a website.
Now, before we discuss any website creation strategies, I would like to briefly state that we will not be talking about organizing affiliate websites. Just for clarity, I really do not have any problem with affiliate websites, but in order to be taken seriously we need to know how to make a website of our very own. By doing so we gain more comfort with controlling our own business, and ever our website will start earning us cash on demand.
Getting a Domain Name
The first thing you want to do is get a domain name. A domain name is simply the web address for your website. In other words: it would be something like [www.mywebsite.com]. Your domain name should reflect the subject of your website. So for instance if the subject of your website is all about fruits and vegetables, you may want to use something like [www.fruitsandvegatables.com].
The idea here is to get a domain name that positions you as an authority on a particular subject.
1. We do this by going to the Google Keyword Tool, (type keyword tool in the Google search engine to find this tool, and it should be the first result) to come up with a good domain name.
(The use of the Google keyword tool or picking an effective domain name is beyond the scope of this article but there are tons of training at places like YouTube that go into detail for how to use it effectively.)
2. The next step is to go to a registrar to register your domain name.
There are many registrars to choose from and if you do a quick Google search you will find thousands of them, but if this is your first time registering a domain name I would suggest going with a reputable registrar like GoDaddy.com.
GoDaddy is currently (at the time of this writing) managing over 45 million domain names, and have been around since 1997.
At GoDaddy we want to:
- put in the domain name you would like to use,
- click go, and if it is available than create an account and register it.
You will have the option of registering it for up to 5 years, however, if you have never done this before I would suggest registering it for a year. Once your year is up you will have the option for registering the domain name for additional years.
Registering a domain name is currently around $ 12.99 a year, but if you Google GoDaddy coupon codes you will find several codes where you can register your domain name for much cheaper.
Also just to let you know GoDaddy will give you tons of up sells which you do not need when making your website. In fact I say no to all of them. They do offer hosting which some choose, but there are better hosting options to choose from, which I will explain in the next section.
Choosing a web host
So now we have a domain name registered it at GoDaddy.com, and now we are ready to choose a hosting account to get everything online. Be advised, just like picking a domain name, choosing a web host is equally if not more important to a long term success when doing business online.
Now I can hear you say well; what is hosting?
Web Hosting is simply your space on the web. Everyone that has a website must have a hosting account. For the sake of this article I really do not want to bore you with everything involved with hosting, but the point is, in order for your website to be live on the web you must have a hosting account.
As stated earlier GoDaddy does provide hosting but, (in the opinion of several website owners including myself) you probably will have the best hosting experience with either Hostgator.com or hostmonster.com
Both hosting companies come with very good packages, and extremely affordable pricing. In fact at the time of this writing you can create unlimited domains at both companies for about $ 7.00 a month.
Now, I can understand if you see these prices and start thinking: Gee this sounds sounds like a lot of money may be involved, but actually a domain name and hosting account are the only two things needed to get a website online.
And there are cheaper alternatives as well free options, but I caution you to pick reputation over "being cheap" simply because when you are making a website for business you need reliability, and there have been several reports (that can be researched on Google) of people losing their business when dealing with an unliable hosting company.
Linking your domain name with your hosting account
Very Important: when you sign up with a hosting company you will receive an email from the company. (this email is usually received in a 24 hour window) This email is very important and I recommend you either write it down and store it in a safe place, save it in a special folder using your email client, or create a special folder on your desktop and save the information in there. You may even consider doing all three.
This email will contain your:
- Domain name
- Your user name and password for your FTP Client
- Domain Name Servers (DNS) for your hosting account.
Yes, I know FTP and DNS may look a little "techie" because we have not talked about them yet, so allow me to quickly explain.
An FTP client, (which stands for File Transfer Protocol) is software that allows you to upload web files (web pages, content, etc …) on to the web. When you are ready to publish to the web, you will be asked for your domain name and the user name and password for your FTP client.
For instance: I use a web editor called Kompozer to create all my basic website content. After creation I am then given the option to publish my content to the web with their built in FTP client. All I would need to do, is enter my domain name and FTP details (user name and password given by my host) and then by sitting publish my content is live on the web for the world to see. So again I would plead with you not to lose these details.
Domain Name Servers
The last thing I would like to talk about are Domain Name Servers. (DNS)
You would only be concerned about Domain Name Servers only if your hosting account is different from your registrar. We spoke earlier about GoDaddy supplying your domain name and your hosting account if you choose to use their services, but if your hosting is different from your registrar, (for example hostgator) than we need to let GoDaddy know that the hosting is being done on a different website.
Actually you may be happy to know that this is very easy to do.
Here are the following steps: (remember we are using GoDaddy as an example).
1. Login to to GoDaddy.com.
2. Click on My Account (on the left).
3. Look for the word "domains" and click launch. This will access the domains menu.
4. Check the box next to your domain name.
5. Click name servers (which is one of the menu options directly above the domain list.
6. Click set name servers.
7. Choose "I have specific name servers for my domains".
8. Replace Name server 1 and 2 with your name servers given in your email from your hosting company. (only the first two need to change.)
9. Click ok.
10. It usually can take an hour or two to update.