Welcome to my complete newbies, step-by-step walk through on how to make a website. I’m going to start out right at the basics to make sure you get all the right information the first time, without getting to confused or lost.
So lets do it
NOTE: There are a few recommendations on this page about who to use and what to use them for. If you’d like to have your website set up tonight, you can use those recommendations and have your new site by the time you wake up tomorrow.
Should you make a free or paid website?
This is the first question you need to consider before you launch into building your new website website – should you use a free service or should you pay for your new site?
The obvious temptation is to go straight for the free website, but I HIGHLY recommend you keep reading below before you do. I’ve written everything I wish I was told about these supposed ‘free’ websites before I started…
Wix.com is a great example of alleged ‘free website’.
You can signup at wix.com and start building your website today without outlaying a cent. You can add images, articles, and even videos to your site without opening up your wallet.
But, that’s where the fun stops.
- What happens when you want to get enough storage space to add some nice images? You have to pay.
- What happens when you you want to do something cool on your site that you saw on another site? You have to pay.
- What happens with you want to get your own website domain name? You have to pay.
- What happens when you want your own email address? You have to pay.
Whilst these websites are free to get started on, as soon as you try and do something clever, interesting, or fun, you have to put your hand in your pocket, pull out your credit card, and put in your details.
The exact amount you have to pay varies from site to site and what you want to do but to get all the standard functions you’d have on a normal website, you’re looking at somewhere between $100 – $200 a year. And if you want to go beyond the standard functions and do something cool with your website, you’re looking at more than $300 A YEAR.
For example: here’s the pricing page from Wix.com
Even when you upgrade to a $6 a month plan ($72/year), you still can’t sell anything on your website, your site will be covered with ads, and you only get a measly 500mb of storage.
You have to upgrade to the $11/month plan ($131/year) just to get their ads off your website and you still only get 3gb of storage. That’s still only 1/5 of what the smallest smart phone has on it.
Is that what you expected to pay when you signed up for your free website???
No, I didn’t think so.
Now that you know the real scam behind ‘free’ websites and that any half decent website is going to cost you money, it’s time to let you know that not all websites are going to cost you $300+ per year.
In fact, if you know where to look, you can get an awesome website with all the bells and whistles, including your own email address, more storage than you could ever use, the ability to do whatever you want on the site, and the your own domain name…
…for less than $50 for the entire year.
“How?” you ask? It’s simple. You just have to know where to look. And that place to look is as far away from ‘free’ websites as you can possibly get.
Here’s how you get your website for less than $50 a year.
How to make a professional looking website for less than $50
What you won’t learn from your ‘free’ website providers is that you don’t need to pay for every little element you add to your website, as long as you pay a little bit upfront.
- You don’t need to make a separate payment for an email address
- You don’t need to make a separate payment to add a custom logo to your site
- You don’t need to make a separate payment to get the ads removed
When you invest less than $50 upfront, you actually get all those things thrown in for free!
You just need to purchase the two essential ingredients for a professional website:
- Website domain name
- Website hosting
1. Website Domain Name
A Website Domain Name is the name that people type into their internet browser to try and find your site. It’s the http://…
To make a website, you need to register your website domain name so that people have a way to find you. Without a website domain name, your site would be a collection of information that no-one could find and no-one could access.
Domain names cost between $9 – $50 per year and you can register them through any of the major domain name retailers…
…but you shouldn’t register a domain name just yet.
If you wait until you’ve read the next step, you’ll see how you can get your domain name for $0.
2. Website Hosting
Website hosting is where you store all the information for your website. Just in the same way your computer and your smart phone have to have memory to store all your files, videos, and images, your website also needs memory.
Memory for websites is called Website Hosting.
Website hosts store all your websites information in their offices so that people from all around the world can access your website whenever they want.
There are literally thousands of website hosts around the world. Some specialise in business website hosting, some specialise in online games hosting, some specialise in app hosting, and others specialise in things you’ve never even heard of.
So who should you choose as your website host?
The simple answer is: someone who specialises in helping people who’ve never built a website before.
- You need someone who’s used to working with novices and can answer all your questions.
- You need someone who’s got a simple to follow and intuitive system.
- You need someone who’s got all the extra features you’ll need to make your life easy, added in for free.
I couldn’t find anyone to tell me who to choose when I first started so I had to do all the research myself. There are some good ones. There are some bad ones. And there’s a big grey space in between filled with everything you could possibly imagine.
Here are my top three recommendations for beginner-friendly website hosting:
1. WebHostingHub.com (My top recommendation)
I didn’t find these guys till the start of last year and I’m glad I did. I’d been running into lots of issues with my old host (see below) and their support staff just weren’t helpful. They kept using complicated jargon that didn’t make any sense and I just kept getting more and more confused.
When one of my friends recommended WebHostingHub, I thought I might try them out. After all, they couldn’t have been more confusing than my last host and their 90 day money back guarantee made me feel pretty safe.
I have to admit, I was pleasantly surprised.
Not only is their system REALLY easy to use, but they gave me my first years domain name registration for free as well as $200 of free advertising vouchers for Google ads. They also gave me free access to all the over 310 different applications, free email addresses, unlimited storage space, and best of all, 24/7 beginner friendly customer support.
So in the end, I didn’t need their 90 day, 100% money back guarantee after all.
Get the cheapest hosting and your free domain name here: Web Hosting Hub.
2. Blue Host (Second best hosting)
Blue host are the guys I was using before I joined WebHostingHub and whilst they offer most of the same features as Web Hosting Hub, the one thing that lets them down is their customer support.
They just aren’t used to helping newbies make websites and you have to spend half your time on the phone trying to decode all the tech jargon that sounds more like invading aliens than hosting terms (what the heck is a ‘Cron Job’???).
If you have some ethical reason against Web Hosting Hub and you know a little bit more about hosting than the average newbie, then you’ll still get great hosting with BlueHost, but if you think you’re going to get confused by all the technical jargon, I’d stick with Web Hosting Hub.
3. In Motion Hosting (not recommended)
In Motion Hosting were the first hosts I used. Look, they’re not bad, but they built for companies and spend more of their time talking about ‘dedicated servers’ and ‘reseller hosting’ than helping you install WordPress.
If you’re a certified tech head and think you can understand them, sign up and give them a go.
But if you’re just starting out, I’d stay right away from them.
So which host should you use?
The choice is completely yours but if you value getting a free domain name, the best value hosting, $200 worth of free advertising, and 24/7, beginner friendly customer support, then you need WebHostingHub.
They give you:
- A free domain name for your first year (saving you up to $50)
- $200 worth of free advertising on Google to bring more people to your site
- Unlimited storage space
- As many free email addresses as you want
- 310 free applications so you can build your website in any way you want
- 24/7 beginner friendly support, 365 days of the year (including christmas day)
All for $3.99 a month…
So if you want to build a professional looking website for less than $50, I highly recommend you sign up with WebHostingHub today.
What to do once you’ve signed up for your hosting
Got your domain name? Got your website hosting? Well, then you’re ready to get started.
(If you still haven’t signed up for your hosting, you’ll need to sign up first to understand this section so do it now).