In our current DIY series on Blogging, we have been learning about the basics needed for understanding the websites and blogging.
We also saw how today’s websites use the CMS for dynamic contents and how WordPress is the defacto standard for such sites.
From today, we will start our journey to understand and set up the web site with the WordPress.
As I mentioned here, more than 30% of internet uses WordPress. It is very simple to install and start blogging, or even a e-commerce sites of your own.
Riding on the wave of WordPress is an easy recipe for our success. Why not use it wisely?
Before we start installing and setting up the WordPress web site, there are some preliminary checklists to complete.
- What is your domain name?
- Where do you want to host it?
- Which provider is cost-effective?
- What are the plans available to buy
As you can see, these are all the basic questions to be answered before you take those first step.
You need to be very careful in deciding the answers for the above questions, especially on the domain name, for you can not just keep changing it when you change your mind. In case you are looking to build up a brand for yourself, this step becomes more imperative.
So, how do you pick the right Domain name? I am not going to get into this since there are tons of articles on the internet from experts.
But what you should keep in mind is, make sure it is short and resembles the goal of your website. Since I had no intention to create a brand or online product, I got mine at mjothi.com. This is just my personal blog to explore on my creative side.
Similarly, you can have multiple subdomains under your ONE registered domain. Sub-domains can be completely on different installation or under the same site using the WordPress feature of Multi-site. We will see more of this once we start the discussion on WordPress installation.
So, it is entirely up to you to decide on a good name. Make it wise.
Once you have decided your domain name, the next step is to register the name with respective authorities. But do not panic, in today’s digital world it’s as easy as a single click of your mouse button.
Yes. All you do is to pick a good service provider who will host your site on his server. Most them will have a package to get you a domain name and hosting.
Since choosing a good plan and service provider is key to the success, let us get into details of how to proceed on this.
Before deciding on the service providers, you also need to understand the different types of hosting in order to make a wise choice of picking the right plan and provider.
What is Hosting
So, what is Hosting? How do you get this done?
Do not worry, I am here to help you on this too.
You are reading this article on the internet from your computer. You know that this article should be saved/made available from some other computer which is residing in an unknown location on this globe. Exactly, and the computer where the server having this article stored is running is called host.
Since I cannot afford to buy a big server and maintain it for my website & blog, I have used someone else server to host my website. I do this by paying them a rental fee.
This idea of providing the space for your website in the server is called Web H
So, if you want the whole server for yourself, you pay the full amount. If you share the resource of that server with others, you share the fees as well. That is why it is important to understand the difference between different types of hosting.
Types of Hosting
Let us understand the most common types of hosting. Technically, we have 4 major types of hosting
- VPS [Virtual Private Server],
- Dedicated and
- Cloud Hosting
Shared hosting means that your website will be sharing the same server that hosts many other websites in it. Obviously this would be the cheapest option when it comes to price. So, why not everybody just go for this?
No, we cannot. It really depends on what kind of web site you want to keep running. If you are looking for a small static websites, or a personal blog this should be a starting point. Since the web sites are shared, there is little guarantee that your site will have good performance and speed.
VPS Virtual Private Server:
This model is similar to the Shared server, but with a simple difference. In this type your website will be running on a dedicated server that is running on the shared server.
Meaning, your server will be a virtual server like many other virtual servers running by sharing the same physical server resources. One of the main advantages of this type is that all virtual machines will be getting equal resources and no specific web site can over utilize the resource complementing your website.
Moreover, this type of hosting minimizes the maximum number of websites to be running on the same box. This indirectly will imply that you pay a higher share than the Shared server plans. But will be way less than a dedicated server.
As the name suggests, this means you get a dedicated server all for yourself. You can personally decide on what OS you want to install and work with. Sounds interesting? Wait, it of course not only comes with a big cost but also a
This type is an extension of VPS. In VPS you have multiple virtual machines sitting on single physical hardware box. But, when it comes to Cloud Hosting, there are literally 100s of servers combined to act as a single server, and you have your VPS on top of this.
With increasing technological advancements, this is fast catching up. Because the website offers more uptime due to many redundant servers etc. The other major benefit is that it can be scaled dynamically. You can start with a lesser CPU or memory resource and extend based on your website traffic and rerquirement.
Which one is for Me
I can hear you screaming at me asking recommendation. Right?
Choosing the right package is not an easy task. Hopefully with these details and understanding about the types of hosting you will be able to decide better on your requirement.
If you are actually looking for personal blogging sites, then I would recommend you to go ahead with Shared hosting. Shared hosting is the best, because at any point in time if you feel to upgrade or scale, it’s easier to just make a request to your provider.
Once you decide on this, go ahead and look for the hosting providers. The below three are the major providers [in alphabetical order].
But do not limit your search to just these. There are plenty of providers who can be local to your area. Do check with them based on the prices and plans for the different hosting services.
It’s not always about the cost. A website not only needs a good amount of memory, CPU, disk space etc but also needs regular backup, speed, network, good bandwidth etc. Not to say the support & response time when you are in need.
To summarize, below are few of the items that should be compared across the provider before you narrow down on one.
- Guarantee on uptime
- Type of Control Panel and FTP support
- PHP version supports
- Email accounts
- Backup plans included
- Support plans
Features like the one-click install of WordPress is more like marketing. So, do not get carried away with those gimmicks.
In the end you make sure that the money you pay for the hosting is “Valuable” and not “Cheap” or “Costly”.
Note: I did all these research and finally went with a local provider who I thought was sufficient for my kind of blog. In the end, it worked out cost effective to me.
So, take your time. Do your own research, and also read reviews from other bloggers and friends.
Do not miss my next post that will concentrate more on the installation of WordPress on your website.