My first website – Domain Names & Hosting tips

I find myself on an adventure to a new career in Front-End Web Development.  Though I’ve worked with the web for years, I’ve never actually taken the steps to the creation of my own site.  In the process of securing my very own domain and choosing a host to launch my vision, I’ve run into a LOT of questions I didn’t realize I’d have.  Here is just one easy way to finding, purchasing and hosting your first domain!

First thing’s first… you’ll need a domain name.

DOMAINS
A domain name is the actual http://www._______.com/ca/org address of your website.

What is a domain?

Here’s what you want to know:
• You can find out what domains are available at Domainr
• You can find out who’s purchased a domain that is currently in use at who.is

** Use this to find out who is using that domain name you wanted and make an offer to buy it from them OR to find out when it expires so that you can claim it and make it your own!

• Canadian .ca domains can be purchased at hover (I bought mine for $14.99 USD/1 year + ICANN Fee $0.18 + Taxes)

** To register a .CA domain name an applicant must have a connection to Canada – See here for the list that applies Who can register a .CA domain name?

• Toronto .to domains can be purchased at tonic (more expensive $50 USD/year with a minimum 2 year purchase)

***BEFORE running out and purchasing a domain, consider which hosting provider you will be investing into as many of them provide a free domain name, depending on the service package you purchase.

Which leads me to…

HOSTING
Your hosting service is the portal through which you can post, edit and manage your website.

What is hosting?

Here’s what you want to know:
• Popular services providers 2015 Top 15 Web Hosting (I’m going with bluehost personally)
• Decide which plan works best for you.  The easiest way to look at it is this: Most hosting services will offer a basic, medium and business service.  If you really only see yourself posting a personal website for fun or business purposes, the basic package will be more than sufficient.  If like me you are in a business that revolves around web and media you may wish to go with a medium package that allows for more than one website and numerous sub domains.  If you are operating a business – clearly the business option was geared to you.  Just keep in mind that the number of emails and storage are sufficient for the size of your operation.
• Extras! – Site Backup, Site Lock, Search Engine Optimization for an additional $1.65 per month you can add all these little bells an whistles.  Not necessary… save yourself the cash.

Each hosting service has their own unique steps to publishing your website so I won’t go into details here, however I will suggest – Call the customer service team the first time you post and have them walk you through the steps.  They will likely be able to provide the most efficient means of doing so and be able to answer your questions real time along the way!

You’ll also likely require an FTP Server to transfer your files from your computer to your hosting service in order to publish your site.  I currently use FileZilla (it’s FREE!) – FileZilla Tutorial.

Cheers!
Kate

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