Are you thinking of creating a website and wondering how difficult it would be? Well, forget your fears. In this amazing age of technology, practically anyone with a connection to Internet can make a website. All you need is a little time and patience (and some budget to pay for the domain name and the web hosting services).
Quick fact: there are over 1,1 bn websites online right now as I’m writing this article and the number is growing every second.
In this article I will show you how to make a website from scratch. Basically, what we will do is build the essentials that you will need in order to later do the design and add content. Think of it as building the base and the walls of your house. It is the first and most important step in creating your own website and once it’s done, you’ll be able to work with the design and post content. Do not worry, it’s easier than you imagine.
Here are the 9 steps that we will go through now in order to create a new website:
Now that you have a general idea about the process, let’s go through it step by step and help you make your own website:
STEP 1. Choose a plan with your web host provider.
Web hosting is basically a service that allows people like you and me to make our websites accessible online. So anyone who wants to create a website and make it visible to other people on the Internet will have to publish it first with a web hosting service.
While you will find many web host providers online, in this article I will show how to launch your website through a provider that I personally use for my website. It is very easy to use for beginners, the pricing is also very affordable for startups and small businesses. One of the perks is that you can get additional discounts through coupons which in the end saves you quite a bit of money.
Go to www.hostgator.com and click “Get Started Now” button. It will take you to a page where you will need to choose a plan for your business. If you only want one website with basic features (your blog or a portfolio type of a website), feel free to go for the Hatchling Plan. You may want to consider Baby Plan if you plan to accept payments on your website. Another reason to go for the Baby Plan is if you plan to have some confidential information on the website that may need extra protection.
Once you’ve chosen a plan, click “Sign Up Now”.
STEP 2. Choose your domain name.
A domain name is basically an address for your website on the Internet. Here are some examples of domains: facebook.com, cnn.com, yahoo.com. If you find that your business name under .com is already taken, check and see if you like any of the other options it suggests for you (for example, .org, .net, .store, etc.).
If those are not available or you don’t like them, try a different name. For example, if cupcakes.com is taken, cupcakes4all.com or jennycupcakes.com may be available.
STEP 3. Confirm the plan you have chosen and decide on the billing cycle.
The Hatchling Plan is the basic plan and the least expensive plan that is offered. Most of the times it provides enough security and protection. However, if you plan to accept payments on your website or store confidential information, go for the Baby Plan.
36 months option will give you the best price, but if you want to start with a shorter period of time, feel free to do it.
Also enter your username and security pin in this block (be sure to write it down, you may need it for future reference).
STEP 4. Fill out your billing information and payment details.
Make sure you provide a correct email address as all the confirmation emails with links to access the website editor will be sent to the email address you provide here.
If you choose to pay through PayPal, you will be asked for PayPal details on the next page.
STEP 5. Add additional information
I would recommend to include into your plan protection from hackers as well as a backup for all your files. It is up to you whether you want to get a professional email that ends with your domain name. It is also up to you to decide whether you need an SSL Certificate.
STEP 6. Enter a coupon code and confirm payment.
Enter your coupon code if you have one. If you don’t, you may use this one to get an extra discount: HABBACheckmate. Click “Validate”.
STEP 7. Log in to your Control Panel
You will receive a couple of confirmation emails. Open the one that says “Your Account Info”. In this email you will find your control panel link and well as the username and password. Here is what it should look like:
Open Your Control Panel link, copy your username and password from the email that you received, click “Log In”
After logging in scroll down to “Software and Services” section and click on the “QuickInstall” button there
STEP 8. Install WordPress
WordPress is a content management system. Without it, your website is just like an empty lot of land with a mailbox on the side of the road. In order to be able to fill your website with content, you will need to have WordPress installed.
Click on one of the WordPress links as shown on the print screen below in order to install WordPress.
And once again click “Install WordPress” as shown on the print screen below.
Fill out the fields below and click “Install WordPress”
After WordPress is downloaded, you will see a window with a link to your website and login details.
You will also get a confirmation email with the same link and login details. Pay attention to Admin URL. This is your most important link that you will need every time you want to make changes on your website. The username and password in this email are also vital. This email basically gives you access to manage your website.
You may want to wait a couple of minutes before you click on the “Installed to” or URL link. If you click on the link and see a white screen right away with some errors, do not panic and just wait up to 10-15 minutes. It is perfectly normal, the system just needs some time to run updates and do its job. It’s a whole new website after all.
STEP 9. Check your website and log in to website editor
Try to access your website again through the URL link you received in the email. After the system runs all the updates and you click on that link, here is what you will see on your website:
It is just a blank page for now but now that you have it, you can start working with the design and the content of your dream website.
In order to log into the website editor, you may click on “Admin Login” button on your website or use “Admin URL” link that you received in your last email.
When you click on one of those links, it will take you to WordPress login page which I recommend to add to bookmarks. You will need this link every time you want to make changes on your website. Here is what it looks like:
Congratulations! You’ve just created your own website!
Take a break for now and in the next article I will take you step by step through your WordPress panel and show you what needs to be done in order to create content on your website.