Best Web Hosting for Beginners – Step by Step
This was originally posted on February 12, 2016 and is currently being updated.
Web Hosting refers to ‘where’ your site will be hosted or located on the web. It is the space that you need to rent (pay a fee) to have your site accessible to everyone who searches online.
Assuming you have bought your domain with Namecheap, you now need to purchase a web hosting package.
There are many options, however, to begin with the best package will be the Hostgator package that allows you to set up more than one site in the one web hosting package.
Can I buy a domain name and host my site at the same place?
Technically, yes you can.
You might be saying, I bought my domain name at Godaddy and I want to host the site there too. It sure does sound convenient and easy.
The problem with that, is sometimes you may need to change your web host and it is not a good idea to have your domain name and your web hosting all in one place.
It is unlikely that you will want to change your web host when you first start blogging but later on with more experience, you may want to change web hosts for a variety of reasons, such as better loading speed, or more space, maybe you are having security issues or you are not happy with the service and so on.
It then makes sense to have the domain name registration elsewhere and then the domain name registration won’t become muddied in the hosting issues.
If you bought your domain name at Namecheap and you use Hostgator web hosting, all you need to do is change the DNS (Domain Nameservers, which are currently at Namecheap) to point to your domain name at Hostgator.
If you were to change web hosting in the future all you do is change the DNS to point to your new host and you are off and running.
Once you have been through the process it will all make sense.
The Best Web Hosting for Beginners
Let us assume that will choose Hostgator as the webhost for your site.
You are going to hear advice from different people about which web host is the best.
When you are starting off Hostgator and Bluehost are two of many that are affordable and well known, however there are many more.
If your site becomes a behemoth, you may well want to move it elsewhere and there are very good options around. However let’s not stray from the path here. Hostgator will be fine to begin with and maybe forever.
If you go with Hostgator use my coupon ITSTIMENOW and you will receive a discount of $9.94USD off the hosting package price.
Follow these steps
- Choose the Baby Plan. Why? Because the Baby Plan allows you to have unlimited domains, so if you want to set up a new site with a different domain name, you can do this on the Baby Plan. This is the best web hosting for affiliate marketing where you may well end up with multiple sites.
Note: If you are planning on building one large site with an intention to sell the site it is easier to handle moving the site to a different web host on a Hatchling plan where there is only one site hosted. This is just something to be aware of but I would suggest going for the Baby Plan at this stage.
- Now fill in all of the details beginning with, enter your domain name. You will choose the I already Own This Domain option.
Write the name of your domain in the space provided.
Don’t worry about the extra domain extension offers that Hostgator will offer.
- Package type. This should already say Baby Plan but use the drop down box to change the plan if it is not correct or choose one of the other plans if you prefer.
- The Billing cycle is cheaper if you choose a longer time period for the hosting services.
It is totally up to you but if you are just starting out, I would probablychoose 12 months and then review at the end of that period.
- Choose a username and security pin and enter your billing information.
- Now, you will see that there are a lot of additional services and all of these add up to more cost. Site backup and security are very important however I would not purchase these through Hostgator. There are other options in the form of plugins once you have your site up and running. However if you have had advice to purchase these products, go ahead.
- Use this coupon code to get started and receive a discount of $9.94 off the package price. ITSTIMENOW
Once you have paid for web hosting, you will need to go to Namecheap and alter some settings so that your domain nameservers point towards Hostgator.
First of all you will receive an email from Hostgator and it will look something like this.
Changing the Domain Name Servers
The next thing to do is take the Nameserver information in the email, (circled in red) go to Namecheap and alter the Nameservers so they point to Hostgator.
It will all be clear in a moment.
Log in to your account at Namecheap.
When you login, you are taken to the Dashboard.
Click on the Domain List in the Menu Bar on the left.
Now you will see your domain name.
Click on the Manage button to the far right of the domain name
If you have used a Domain name provider other than Namecheap it will just be a matter of navigating in your account to manage the Nameservers for your domain.
It is usually very easy to find. It may just say DNS settings.
Change the DNS with the new ones from Hostgator, that you were given in your email.
Once you have changed the DNS to point to your web hosting provider you are almost finished.
To find out if all has gone through properly you will need to log into the Cpanel (previous email) and you should see the name of your site.
Typically you will need to wait a few hours for the Nameserver information to change.
Okay so you are 99% of the way there now and all that is left to do is set up WordPress and you are on the way to starting your blogging life.
Life will never be the same! (in a good way )
The next step will be setting up WordPress on your site.
HAPPY DANCE is coming!