How to get website hosting, a domain name and prepare for production
- 13 October 2011 by Dean 1 Comments
Read this before you start building your website! After you have gone through the steps involved in planning a website, you need to go through what is called the pre-production phase (where production means building the website), before you can actually build your website.
For small business and personal sites, there are three main areas to check off during the pre-production:
- Get website hosting
- Get a domain name
- Organise your assets
Organise my assets… didn’t I just do that in the planning phase? Well yes, but you want to check your website assets carefully. Also, there is one additional thing we’ll be looking at finding to complete your asset organisation – the theme (skin or design) of your website.
Use this article as a checklist of what to do before you start building your website.
Get website hosting
Website hosting is where you’re website will live on the Internet. It’s like a hard-drive floating out there on the Internet that stores your website’s files… your piece of the ‘net. For Aussie websites, I’ve done the research and tested working with a few different website hosting providers. The preferred, and only recommended website hosting provider has great prices and really good customer service (unlike other bigger names who take days to respond).
Website hosting is pretty cheap, and there are flexible payment options available. You can pay by the month or get a discount for paying for 12 months. Personally I prefer to pay by the month, as when I buy a domain name and website hosting together, I can just pay for them at the same time once each year.
Get a domain name
A domain name is simply the name someone types into an Internet browser to get to your website. The domain name of this website is youmakethewebsite.com.au. After carefully considering your domain name in the planning phases of your website project, you’ll need to purchase it. Prices vary depending on the type of domain you buy (e.g. .com or .com.au).
Organise your assets
There are two parts to this.
First, read over your content document (as made in the planning phase) one last time. You could call this a sanity check, you’ve just taken some time off looking at this document and are seeing it now from a fresh point of view. Check that you have icons or photos in the content where you think it will help reinforce the message you are trying to get across. You may need to purchase stock illustrations and icons or stock photos, or go out and take some photos yourself.
The second thing, is to choose a WordPress theme. The You Make The Website guide shows you how to create a website using WordPress. If you haven’t heard of WordPress, you’d be surprised at just how many websites you browse everyday use it.
For a professional looking website, we recommend buying a premium WordPress theme. Don’t be scared off by the word “premium”, as these are usually fairly cheap, around $35, and to have the equivalent custom made website or WordPress theme would easily cost thousands.
The other options to make a website (i.e. not doing it yourself)
Getting someone else to make a website can prove to be quite costly. To see the options and how much it might cost to get someone to make a website for you, take a look at the cost comparison page.
If you’re worried about getting it wrong by doing it yourself, then don’t. You Make The Website was made to guide you through the process and to get it done right the first time.