How To Host A Website: A Beginner’s Guide in 2023
Did you know that 252,000 new websites go live every day?
Having an online presence is essential for businesses in the modern age.
With the help of a professional hosting company, you can give your audience the exact information they want with just one click.
Conversely, failure to have a website can put your business at a disadvantage.
In this article, I’ll discuss the basics of hosting a website, including:
- What types of web hosting are available
- How to select the right host for your needs
- How to get started with setting up your site
- And more.
How To Host A Website
Here are the key steps to take when hosting your website:
- Choose and register a Domain Name: The first step in setting up your website is selecting the right domain name. Your domain name should be easy to remember and relevant to your business or brand.
- Select A Web Hosting Plan: Once you have chosen a domain name, you will need to select a web hosting plan for your website.
- Set Up Content Management System (CMS): After settling on your website design, you must set up a CMS. This system allows you to easily create, edit, and organize website content such as blog posts, images, videos, and other multimedia elements.
- Publish Your Website: Now, you can publish your website. Once your website is live, ensure all the necessary files are uploaded and running correctly. You may need to connect the domain name to the web hosting plan or install plugins for added features.
Benefits Of Choosing The Right Hosting Provider
Hosting a business website means putting your files on an internet server so customers can access them from anywhere.
Here are some advantages of choosing a reputable hosting provider with plenty of hosting platforms and services.
Reliability and Uptime
Hosting a website can be a simple process for any website, but careful consideration is necessary when selecting the right hosting provider.
You must pick the right server hosting provider if your business relies on a website or an online application.
Reliability and uptime are among the most significant benefits of hiring a professional hosting company.
You don’t want downtime running your business, which could mean losing customers or sales.
Knowing that functionality and speed can vary between hosting providers is essential.
Professional hosting companies guarantee high uptime and reliability, meaning you can focus on running your business without worrying about technical issues or downtime.
Another significant benefit of using a professional hosting company is security.
Most hosting companies use secure servers regularly updated with the latest security patches to guard against potential threats like malware, ransomware, viruses, and other cyber attacks.
Your data remains safe and secure at all times – an invaluable service for any business looking to take its operations online.
Fortunately, free SSL certificates are now available from various hosting providers, giving you the peace of mind that your website is secure.
An SSL certificate is a must for any website, especially those starting an ecommerce business.
This certificate helps encrypt data between the web server and the user’s device.
It also helps to build trust with your customers, which can result in higher conversion rates.
The best hosting companies provide cost-effective solutions for hosting a website.
Most hosting companies offer affordable plans and packages, so you can get your website up and running quickly without breaking the bank.
Moreover, many companies also offer additional services, such as website design and maintenance, which may help you save money in the long run.
Accessing website hosting services that offer value for money and quality services is essential.
Be sure to research and find the right solution comprising price and features for your business.
Free WordPress Migration Services
If you already have an existing website but want to switch to WordPress, free migration services provide an easy transition without any hassle or cost.
With these services, you’ll be able to transfer all the data from your old site—including posts, pages, images, comments, and plugins—to a new WordPress site quickly and easily.
No need to worry about losing valuable content or sacrificing quality when switching platforms.
Easily Linking Your Domain Name with Your Web Host
Once you have a domain name, you’ll link it to your web hosting provider.
Linking your web host with your domain name is essential in web development.
Otherwise, your website will be hidden from the public.
Fortunately, most web hosts make it quick and easy to do this with a few clicks.
The first thing that you want to do is access the settings for the DNS (Domain Name System).
You can find these settings in the web hosting account where you purchased your domain.
Once in those settings, look for the area that allows you to change the DNS information.
At this point, replace what’s there with those from whoever holds your website server.
Once you’ve inputted these new settings and clicked save, everything will sync perfectly.
You may need to wait a few minutes before ensuring everything is working correctly.
Sometimes, it can take a few hours to sync up with all the databases and update the various records.
When creating your hosted website, you’ll generally find a detailed tutorial on linking your domain name with your web host.
Following the steps will ensure that everything is connected and ready for you to start building a website.
With the right domain registrar, DNS settings, and hosting provider, it’s easy to launch an online presence in no time.
Choosing the Right Tool for Creating Your Website
If you’re starting a business and want to focus on SEO, look into rankings research and search engine optimization (SEO) tools when hosting a website.
With website hosting and SEO, there are two main paths to creating a website – choosing WordPress or an all-in-one builder.
Let’s explore the pros and cons of each approach so you can make an informed decision when it comes time to build your website.
WordPress is the most popular content management system (CMS).
This open-source software offers immense customization options, allowing users to develop highly customized and unique websites from scratch.
Plus, with its array of plugins, themes, and widgets, WordPress offers more features out of the box than most other CMS solutions.
However, those same features can also be intimidating for beginners since they require some technical proficiency to set up correctly.
WordPress sites are more vulnerable to hacking than other websites due to their popularity.
Users must stay vigilant about security updates to protect their sites from attacks.
All-in-one builders are great for those lacking the technical know-how required by WordPress but still want a great-looking website without having to pay top dollar for custom design work.
All-in-one builders offer drag-and-drop interfaces and prebuilt templates that allow anyone—even complete novices—to get up and running.
However, these conveniences come at a cost.
All-in-one builders tend to be more expensive than WordPress because they include various fees in the package price.
Top Features When Choosing A Web Hosting Plan
Let’s say you’ve decided to go with WordPress.
When choosing the web hosting plan for your WordPress site, one should consider the following features before committing to one provider over another.
Customer support is one of the most important things to consider when looking for a WordPress web hosting provider.
Make sure you find out what support the company offers.
Such support could include phone, email, or live chat.
You should also ensure that the customer service team is knowledgeable and can respond quickly to any questions or issues that you may have.
Consider if they offer free domain registration or one-click installation services—these features can save time and money in the long run.
Ensure that your plan has enough storage space and capacity for your needs.
Some providers may charge extra fees if you exceed these limits.
Next, look at their uptime guarantees.
Downtime means lost traffic and potential customers, so ensure your chosen provider has a proven track record for reliability and performance.
Types Of Hosting
There are many hosting options – cloud hosting, shared hosting, dedicated server hosting, and more.
Take your time to research the right solution for your needs.
I’ll further cover the various web hosting plans in this article.
Depending on your hosting plan, firewall and security features may vary.
Ensure the web hosting company has measures to protect your website from hackers and malicious actors.
Choosing the right web hosting plan is vital for website owners who value security and want to keep their data safe.
Cpanel makes managing your website more accessible, from setting up email accounts to creating databases and installing software applications.
Look for a hosting plan that includes Cpanel and offers features like a website files manager, backups, FTP access, and more.
Ease Of Use
One of the most helpful features is a website builder.
Website builders are a great way to create and customize a website without technical knowledge.
These builders provide a step-by-step way of setting things up, so pick a host that offers an easy-to-use interface.
One-Click WordPress Hosting Installation
Hosting a website used to feel like an intimidating experience.
However, hosting service providers have made it incredibly simple to get a website up and running.
One-click installations are essential for WordPress hosting because they allow you to deploy content quickly.
If you want to take advantage of WordPress’s power, having a hosting web account with a one-click installation is essential.
With one-click installation, you don’t have to manually install or update any software.
All you have to do is click a button and let your host do the work for you.
Utilizing a control panel like cPanel can also make the installation more accessible.
You’ll be able to choose from multiple options, including MySQL and PHP, and install WordPress quickly with a few clicks of your mouse.
The Best Domain Name Registrars
One of the first steps is to choose and register a domain name.
Fortunately, many domain registrar services make finding and registering your perfect domain name easy.
Choosing the right domain registrar is essential because it will determine the level of service you receive and the cost of registering your domain name.
Common domain registrars include GoDaddy, NameCheap, Bluehost, and Domain.com.
Services like these offer competitive rates for buying and managing domains and helpful features like email forwarding and DNS hosting.
Additionally, many of these services include bulk discounts for buying multiple domains from the same provider.
Regardless of your choice, read through their terms and conditions before committing to anything.
Types Of Website Hosting Plans
When choosing your web hosting plans, several options are available for WordPress users.
Let’s explore these main types of hosting.
Shared Hosting (for smaller sites and blogs)
Shared hosting is the cheapest hosting since you share resources with other websites on the same server.
It’s great for small businesses and individuals just starting, as it only requires a little technical know-how, and hosting costs are kept low due to resource sharing.
You might also have free access to a free domain name, setup, and support.
You only need an IP address and a control panel to manage your site.
The downside is that if another website on the same server experiences an increase in traffic, this could negatively affect your site’s performance as resources become more limited.
VPS Hosting (for flexibility)
Virtual private server hosting offers more flexibility and control than shared hosting but at an increased cost.
With the flexibility to configure your own server, you’ll have access to more resources and the ability to customize settings as needed.
VPS hosting allows users to partition their server portion, giving them access to dedicated RAM and CPU resources.
All this makes it ideal for sites experiencing sudden spikes in traffic.
With this hosting service, you can effectively rent a Linux or Windows server and have complete control over it.
With a VPS, you’ll be able to install applications like MySQL, PHP, and other software that you may need to make your website work.
This type of hosting is ideal for larger businesses or those needing more control over their websites.
Managed WordPress Hosting (for hassle-free management)
For those who want a hassle-free experience managing their WordPress site, managed WordPress hosting is worth considering.
This service takes care of backups, updates, and security so owners can focus their time elsewhere.
Managed WordPress hosting often comes at higher prices than other plans.
Dedicated Hosting (for power & control)
Hosting a website with a dedicated server provider can give you robust control over traffic spikes and the ability to handle high-traffic demands.
With this type of hosting, you’ll control your server and have access to the hardware resources it provides.
Dedicated servers are also ideal for those who need their own private space with maximum security and scalability options.
Overall, hosting a website right is essential to running your webpage smoothly.
Understanding the different hosting services available and their benefits is essential to decide which is the best web server for your site.
Finding the Right Hosting Plan
Whether you’re just starting or have more experience, here are tips on shopping around for the best fit in terms of cost and features when selecting a hosting plan.
- Start Small: Opting for shared hosting plans that offer essential services is wise when launching your website. These plans are typically the most affordable option, but they also have limitations compared to more robust methods. Before investing in one of these more expensive plans, make sure your website has enough traffic and will benefit from the additional features offered by them.
- Consider Upgrading As Your Business Grows: As your website gets more traffic, consider upgrading your current hosting plan or switching providers altogether to access better features that can help support your growing business. For example, suppose your site is gaining traction and requires more computing power than what you have available. In that case, it might be time to look into VPS or dedicated server options that offer higher processing power and speed levels.
- Combine Paid Options with Free Resources: While there are plenty of paid hosting options, if you’re looking for ways to save money, consider combining free resources with paid options whenever possible. There are often free services that offer essential web hosting services and free software extensions that can supplement more expensive paid tools. Additionally, some providers offer discounts or promotional codes that can help reduce costs further, so ensure you are taking advantage of any discounts available.
Self-Hosting a Website On Your Computer
For tech-savvy users, hosting your own website can be an attractive option.
It may sound intimidating to some, but it doesn’t have to be.
With some know-how and the right resources, you can host your website from the comfort of your home or office.
Here are some specific considerations you must remember to go ahead with self-hosting.
24/7 Access to High-Speed Internet
One of the most critical considerations when hosting a website on your computer is ensuring you have 24/7 access to high-speed internet.
The last thing you want is for your site to go down because your internet connection suddenly dropped.
Before taking the plunge and committing to hosting your website on your computer, ensure you have reliable internet access when it counts most.
When hosting a website on your computer, more security risks are involved.
Malicious actors may gain access to sensitive information stored on your computer if they can breach its security measures.
Stay on top of updating all software with the latest version and patch any security flaws.
If you have the know-how and are comfortable working with HTML and other coding languages, hosting a website on your computer can be a viable option.
You’ll often need to make changes or troubleshoot errors, so having experience with coding can be helpful.
While hosting a website on your computer is possible, it is essential to be aware of this setup’s potential risks and challenges.
I recommend hosting a website on your computer only if you have the proper technical know-how and resources.
If you need more robust hosting options, consider investing in VPS or dedicated server plans that offer better security measures and more reliable performance.
Hosting a website may seem challenging, but the right web hosting service provider can help make the process easy and secure.
Hiring a professional hosting company offers numerous benefits, including reliability, security, and cost-effective solutions.
Professional hosting providers also give you peace of mind knowing that your site will always remain up-to-date.
What’s your favorite hosting option?
Have you ever run into any hosting issues?
Please feel free to share your thoughts in the comments section.
Further reading on AdamEnfroy.com: Are you on a budget?
Here are the cheapest web hosting services to consider.
This list provides the best name generators to help you find the perfect website name – ideal for domain name registration.