Finding the host with the most

Once you’ve decided what kind of site you want to have, you’ll need to find a host for your site.

Just like with domain registration, there are many thousands of options. Type “web host” into Google, and you will get about 210,000,000 results.  You’ll need to do some research to find the host that’s best for you.

Once thing I’m going to say here: you will need to pay for reliable hosting.  There are many services which will offer free hosting, but in all cases, a free host will place banner ads on your web site, which will interfere with the look of your site and and doesn’t look professional.

Most hosts charge on a yearly basis.  Some will charge on a monthly basis, but if you don’t want to worry about making a payment every month, paying for the year will really be in your best interest.  You can expect to pay about $100/year at a minimum.  This may seem a lot up front, but consider that you are paying for 12 months, and it seems a lot cheaper.

Now, on to things to consider:

If you want to create a static web site, almost any host will do.  Any web host can accomodate HTML pages and images (which is what a static site is composed of).

If you want to use a blogging application (like WordPress) or a CMS (like Joomla), you will need a host that supports and provides PHP and MySQL.  PHP is a programming language and MySQL is the database system that these applications use.  Remember, you don’t need to know the programming language.  This is just what these applications are made with.  All you need to know is whether your host can support them.  A couple of hosts that support these: Netfirms and Dreamhost.

Another thing you want to look at: reliability.  See what people are saying about the host you are looking at.  Type the name of the host into google and find out what people have written about them.  Check out hosting review sites and see how the host rates.  If you like what you see, then sign up for the host.  Remember, though: that you should probably look at more than one review.  At one time of another, every host gets a bad review from someone who had a bad experience.  Don’t take advice from the first place you find it.  Make sure you get a second or third opinion.

Don’t rush into your decision.  Don’t let anyone else rush you into your decision.  Once you’re comfortable with the host, sign up and pay for the hosting.  We can then look at setting up some different web sites and how you might go about it.

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