Website on a Budget: Part 1 – Hosting/ Domains/ Email
Posted on May 13th, 2017. Written by: Duncan McClean
If you’re someone who wants to make your own website for yourself or a small business. You have come to the right place. In the first part of this series, you will learn how to purchase domains and hosting and we’ll install WordPress ready for the next lesson.
Before you start clicking away at your mouse and keyboard, we should come up with a plan of our website on paper. It might look a little like this.
It should include your website name and the different pages you want.
Now we’ve got that sorted we can get some hosting. Hosting is basically the computer or the server which your website is going to be sat on and accessed from. The domain name is the URL that you will use. They usually look like this.
You have your WWW then the name of your domain then the top level domain which in my case is .co.uk.
There are a couple of good providers for web hosting. Some of them include GoDaddy, Hostgator and 1&1. It’s all about finding the best deal and not necessarily the cheapest price.
For this tutorial, we are going to be using 1&1. You are looking for WordPress hosting. WordPress is the platform or piece of software that you are going to building your website on.
1&1 offer WordPress hosting starting at 99p a month which would sound good to anyone.
We’re going to use the Basic plan which gives us:
- 1 WordPress project which is basically 1 WordPress website.
- 50GB of storage which will be more than enough.
- Unlimited visitors
- 1 Domain included
- Managed WordPress
- Unlimited email accounts
This deal is very good and I would recommend it for starting your own website.
To continue with the purchasing process click ‘Continue’. Now we can get our hosting and domain setup and registered.
It will ask you to register a free domain. This will be your business domain like www.mybusiness.com.
Now we can see if your chosen domain is available if it is we can continue again. We can now select our contract length. We can either choose 12, 24 or 36 months.
Now we have a summary of our order. We have the 1&1 Managed WordPress and our domain. After you have confirmed your order you purchase the domain and hosting. You’ll get a few emails through from 1&1 with details regarding your order. One of those emails will allow you to access the 1&1 Control Panel where you can manage every part of your domain and your hosting. You should see a button that says ‘Start my project’. I can either start my website through the 1&1 Website Builder which is good if you really have no idea what to do but we are going to use WordPress to create our website so you can install that. Would you prefer installing WordPress manually?
You’ll need your website name and you’ll need to create your first admin user. I heavily recommend not using the username ‘admin’ as that is prone to attack by hackers.
The next stage asks you if you would like Managed WordPress or Standard WordPress (what’s the difference). This tutorial is going to use Managed WordPress which means we can focus on the content and the design that we are going to be using on our website.
You will now be able to visit your website but when you click on your site URL you will see that it is not the domain that your purchase earlier. It is at a random address because you have not verified your account and joined your domain up to your hosting yet.
You’ll need to go to your email and verify your 1&1 account.
After you are verified we can join your domain and host to each other. Go back to the 1&1 Control Panel and our WP Install listing and click ‘Connect domain’. Now you can type in our domain that we have just purchased. Then click ‘Connect domain and we should be ready to go. If you visit your new domain your new website should be there waiting for you. If you are having issues accessing your new website it might be because your domain has not been propagated yet. It usually takes around an hour to do so but can take up to 48 hours so you might need to be patient.
While you are waiting you can create your professional email address. On the left-hand side of the 1&1 Control Panel, you can click on ‘E-mail’ and you can create your own email address that looks something like this.
You can click ‘Continue’ and you can fill in your name for the person who is going to be using that email address. You can set it up to forward your emails to a Gmail or other email provider if you prefer it setup that way.
This is the end of this lesson. We have bought our domain, our hosting and we have them both configured so they can talk to each other.