Are you new to creating a website? Do you know where to start and how to go about it? Well, let’s start by looking at what you need to do first. As a new comer to the webmaster field, you need to understand that there are various ways to getting started online. In order to have a website, you will need two things; a domain name and a hosting account. Both domain names and web hosting services will cost money, but there are ways to get around that. If this is your first time trying out to build a website, you may want to start off by going in the free services direction, rather than paying for domains and hosting.

Domain Names

A domain name is the web address that users will need to point to when they want to access your website. Think of the Internet as huge city with tons of neighborhoods. In your city, you will have a number of small neighborhoods, with specific ZIP codes or postal codes. Similarly, on the Internet, these neighborhoods are assigned by an IP address. When your website is hosted on a server, you are essentially a resident on a dedicated IP address. A domain name is the address on that specific IP address. A domain name could be purchased from a domain registrar, like Go Daddy, or you can get a free sub-domain from a free hosting company.

Web Hosting

If you are just testing the waters with web hosting, you may want to try out free hosting at first. There are hundreds of free hosting companies out there, but knowing which one to choose is the tough part. Free hosting companies will limit the amount of space, bandwidth and features you receive, as everything is provided free for you. In exchange, some free hosting company will place advertisements on your website to make some money from them. Very few companies offer ad-free hosting services, but you can look at some here or run a quick search online to find them.

When applying for free hosting, you’ll have the option to choose a sub-domain or purchase a domain. Choose one option based on what you want and create your account. With free hosting services, a website builder will usually be included on which you can design and build your site.

There are several disadvantages to opting for free hosting. The two biggest disadvantages are lack of reliability and technical support.  Space, bandwidth and resources are very much limited with free hosting services. If your website begins to grow, you will surely need to switch to a paid hosting service. If the free host realizes that you are attracting a lot of visitors, they will most certainly try to cash in on the traffic you are generating. A good rule to remember is that, if you are generating a reasonable amount of traffic, its best to go for a more reliable and stable paid hosting service.

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