So you want to build a website. Where do you start? What do you need? How much will it cost?
Well, I wanted to do a basic information post. I’m not going to cover the “how much does it cost” part because I think that is on the services page on this website. But I’ll try to hit the basics on the other two.
There are 2 things you need, basically. You need a domain name, and a server. The domain name is fairly simple. That is the “name” of your website. It is the first part/beginning of the URL (uniform resource locator) or the “.com” part of the address…it’s the name you pick for your site. Can you just pick any name? Well, sort of. There are companies called “registrars” that are “registration places” for your site’s name. You have to go to one of them, and search out the name you want to use for your site. Every domain, (website “name”) must be unique. It can be currently in use, or licensed to be used by anyone else. It is possible for a domain name to be “taken” and no site to be on it. sometimes people just buy and trade them. A good domain name can essentially be worth a lot of money. (think if you purchased Facebook before that site was set up, and someone wanted it, they would have to purchase it from you) If someone purchases a domain, and doesn’t use it right away, then that domain is considered to be “PARKED”. A parked domain is a domain someone purchased, but didn’t build a site on. Here is a list of all the domain registrars around the globe. https://www.icann.org/registrar-reports/accredited-list.html . You may just recognize some of them, you may not. Let’s pick one we might know…GoDaddy… if you go down the list to the G’s, you will see Godaddy.com. If you go there, you can search out domain names and find one that is available. If you find one you like that’s available, you can buy it (actually lease it) There are different TOP LEVEL DOMAINS. The TOP LEVEL DOMAIN is the part after the dot… .com, .net, .info, .us, .gov, .org. Those are all top level domains. If the name you want for your site is not available under one top level domain, it may be available in another if the owner didn’t snatch them all up. If you can’t find mysite.com for example, you may find mysite.net to be available, or you can use mysite.org if it is a nonprofit business. Different top level domains are different prices. Most of the main ones are the same, .com, .net, .org, and .info. . .us costs more…about $20USD per year. There are also “special” top level domains now that are new…like .website, .photgraphy, and many, many more. These special top level domains are very new, and very expensive. They can cost from $50 to hundreds and hundreds of dollars a year. They even have “brand name” top level domains for some well known companies now. You can see some of them here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Internet_top-level_domains#Brand_top-level_domains . There are also Country Top-level domains…one for every country. The United States of America, for example, is .us . .cn is china, and .ca is canada. You can see those here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Country_code_top-level_domain . Some of the other special Top Level Domains are sponsored TLDs. You can see some of them here, though I believe the list is much longer now: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sponsored_top-level_domain . Anyway, Google what you are looking for, and you’ll find it. There’s lots of information out there.
So, you picked a domain name. Now what? Well, you need a server to put all the files for your website on. A server is just another computer with a server operating system, like Apache, Linux, or Windows Web Server. You could build your own, and maintain it to keep it up 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 165.25 days a year…or, you can “rent” space on a server someone else own. When you do this, it’s called “HOSTING”. It means someone else is “hosting” your website files for you, and you pay them to maintain the hardware. It’s the easiest way. There are many types of hosting services. There are Shared Hosting, Cloud Hosting VPS (Virtual private server) hosting, Dedicated server hosting services…they all have their pros and cons. Others have done the work of writing about it, with pictures, so I’ll just give you a link. Here is an article that explains the hosting services pretty good: https://websitesetup.org/what-is-web-hosting/ .
Anyway, I have to go. One of my client’s websites is running slow on his cloud hosting server/service, and he wants me to fix it. So off I go. If you need help even just getting started, you can call Everything I.T. to help you. Even if you just want to build your own site, but you need help setting it up, I can help you with that. Just get in touch. Don’t wait. Ask questions. It never hurts to call and ask questions, right?
And here is what all the stuff I said looks like pictorially: