Once you’ve found a good domain name that is available, you will have to register it and choose a web host. I picked PowWeb.com because of their low price, and how easy they make everything when getting started for the first time, especially for beginners. PowWeb registered my new domain name and offered the web-hosting service, making very easy. At the time I signed up, I was able to get 1 year of web-hosting, and the domain registration all for $107. Their price plans have changed since then, but they are still very cheap – less than $10/month. They aren’t perfect, but for less than $10 per month you can’t expect much. I figured that after the first year, if my website was successful, I could move up to a faster, more powerful (and more expensive) hosting company. GrownUpGeek.com survived being on the front page of Digg.com and being mentioned by Leo Laporte on his nationally syndicated radio show while being hosted on this shared host and the site performed just fine.
I registered my domain name and signed up for hosting on a Friday afternoon, and by Friday evening I was ready to start my website.
Creating the website:
Most low-cost web-site hosts offer pre-made web packages or other ways for beginners to easily make a website, but I did not use any of those. Based on my research, I decided that I needed a good, search-engine friendly Content Management System (CMS) to build my site with. A CMS is a pre-made ‘script’ that stores all your pages in a database instead of ‘old fashioned’ static html pages. When you use a CMS all of the basic design, menus, security, etc is already done for you. You only need to customize things like your logo, and adjust the settings to suit your needs. All of these customizations are done via menus and is very simple – all the hard work is done by the CMS. Because a CMS requires a database to store all the site information, it’s important that your web-host offers a MySQL database.