So you bought your domain name and do not know what to do or maybe you do. Regardless this short article will break it down for you.
What is web hosting?
Web hosting or Web Hosts are companies that provide space on a server owned or leased for use by clients, as well as providing Internet connectivity, typically in a data center
Or to even more simplify it. You buy your domain name from either the companies I mention in this article or from your own personal source. Than you would have to have it hosted, as if you would have someone host a party for you. Think of the domain as your party and the web host is the hall you rented to have your party.
Create Your Own Website Using the Best Web Hosting Platforms and Easy-to-Use Resources
Imagine being served by a web hosting platform that comes equipped with an entire spectrum of awesome-quality features so you can create your own website with absolute ease, without requiring digging a hole in your pocket.
It’s likely that you have already done some homework with regard to the options available at your disposal in the cut throat competitive web hosting market. And rightly so, after all, while launching a new blog or website, choosing the right host is probably the most important aspect that nobody can afford to overlook at any cost. But at the same time, if you are anything like most people out there, it’s not always an easy task to pick the right host like it may appear on a casual look.
With so many hosting service providers in the market today – it’s perfectly normal for one to feel lost. The best you can do under such a situation is to weigh down the advantages and disadvantages associated with individual companies and then compare them to one another.
The most renowned hosting service providers around in the market today include the likes of BlueHost, HostGator, GoDaddy, DreamHost, HostMonster, and a few others.
However, after trying out most of these popular web hosts over the past few years, I have found my personal favorites in HostGator and BlueHost. I will explain what makes them better than the rest of the competition in a bit. However, before we delve into that, here’s an honest disclosure I would want you to know beforehand.
Honest Disclosure: If you choose to purchase hosting website hosting from Bluehost and Hostgator, I will receive a small commission (at no extra cost to you). That being said, I personally use services offered by both these companies, and I am recommending them only because they are good, not because I’ll earn a small commissions if you go ahead and purchase them.
For the sake of simplicity, I am going to split this article into two parts: Part I will include an analysis of the overall quality of both BlueHost and HostGator hosting services whereas Part II will include an in-depth review of the site-builders in both platforms.
A comprehensive analysis of the hosting services offered by BlueHost and HostGator
It’s almost mandatory for hosting service providers today to offer a user friendly control panel – especially for those who are not well versed with web scripts such as Joomla, WordPress etc. To their credit, the hosting platforms offered by both BlueHost and HostGator come equipped with pretty sophisticated and user-friendly cPanels.
From my observation, the cPanel offered by HostGator is more customizable in addition to being capable of handling almost any user-demand. A bit more complicated, but I don’t really think it will trouble you much.
Compared to that, BlueHost fetches you an attractive and easy-to-use cPanel that can be handled by pretty much everyone. It features a unique one-click WordPress script installation which would be definitely cheered by all you planning to create a new blog.
Overall, BlueHost is slightly ahead of its competitors when it comes to user interface and cPanel.
Both HostGator and BlueHost are renowned for their excellent performances. They both provide 99.9 per cent uptime guarantee. While BlueHost relies on CPU Segregation technology that can intelligently control CPU and protect the hosted websites from bad users, HostGator websites are hosted in Dual Xeon servers in their Dallas data center. These data centers are equipped with state-of-the-art infrastructures and connect to 10 backbone providers.
BlueHost has three dedicated data centers, all equipped with impeccable power back solution comprising of both diesel generators and UPS power backup. HostGator currently invests million of dollars each year to raise and promote new technology to ensure more efficient performance.
Customer support plays an important role in determining the overall quality of a web host provider. After all, whenever you face any issue on your server or website, the support time must have the ability to resolve it at the earliest possible.
Both the companies have well trained personnel’s on-board to ensure that customers can benefit from their helpline 24x7x365. They provide ticketing system, email support, live online chat support and phone call support.
So, it’s a tie between the two when it comes to customer support service.
||HostGator Hatchling Plan
||HostGator Baby Plan
|Total number of domains
||$6.27 per month
||$6.97 per month
|1 Year Plan
||$4.83 per month
||$6.97 per month
|2 Year Plan
||$4.12 per month
||$6.25 per month
||$6.99 per month
|3 Year Plan
||$3.44 per month
||$5.55 per month
||$5.99 per month
Part II Website builder review
How easy is HostGator’s website builder?
The fact that HostGator is currently hosting over 4,000,000 domains all over the world stands as a testimony to its commitment towards ensuring a superior user experience on all fronts. We have already analyzed most of the most critical aspects that collectively make it a force to reckon. Therefore, in this section we are going to confine our discussion only to the key aspects associated with its website builder.
All HostGator hosting plans comes with a couple a couple of free online website buider tools called SiteBuilder and SiteStudio.
Both these tools are designed in a way that ensures even those without any knowledge of web designing and programming can easily build a website. However, they are also equally useful for experienced webmasters to come up with professional websites within a pretty short span of time.
When you sign up with HostGator hosting, you get unrestricted access to all the website creation tools in the hosting account cPanel control panel. Once again, the best thing about HostGator’s free online website builder tools is their relative simplicity. Here, allow me explain how you should go about the task:
First you need to login to the cPanel (Control Panel). Next, look for the SiteBuilder on the left column and click on that. This will lead you to the welcome page with details and instructions about how to proceed with the five steps needed to create your own website.
The five steps outlined in the SiteBuilder are all that’s needed to create a fully functioning site. These are:
After a quick look over, we are now ready to begin. Click on the first step “Start” to begin.
Here, first you need to decide upon a template for your site. There are a wide range of customizable templates at your disposal. Once you have selected a particular template of your choice, further customization options include a choice of different color schemes. These are located at the top right column.
If you already have a banner, you can upload it. Otherwise there are also a host of pre-made banner options. The next step is to select a menu style, upload a logo and finalize your domain’s name along with a description and a footer message. Once you are all done, click “Next” to continue.
Under the Page option, you will find all the resources to create and edit the overall structure of your website. There are two separate segments in the Editor – one in the left and the other on the right part of the screen (both are separated by two arrow buttons).
The left section is for selecting the pages that you intend to have on your website. Once you select a page, simply click on the “right arrow” button to add it on your website’s structure. If you want to remove a page that you already selected by mistake, you can simply remove it on the right section before coming back to the left section again using the “left arrow”. Once you are done with this process, click on the “Next” option.
Now, you are free to edit the content of all your web pages according to your preference. All you need to do is click on the each of the page templates that you added during the previous step and then add all the relevant content you want to publish. To make the job simpler, there’s a text editor that works more or less the same way as Microsoft Word. Repeat the process to edit all the pages. Once you are done with editing, click on the Next button to proceed.
The final step in the process will allow you publish the content of your website. Don’t worry though – in case you missed out on anything, or would want parts or all the content to be modified or replaced, you can easily do it using the Edit Page option.
Click on the “Visit Site” to view your newly published website.
How easy is BlueHost’s Website Builders?
While designing a site, the availability of well designed templates can mark your work much easier; especially if you have a site builder you are comfortable with. With thousands of available templates, Bluehost offers a plethora of services and is ranked with very positive ratings when it comes to site builders. This can be very helpful when you are on a deadline, and building a design from scratch might not be possible or practical.
Among others, Bluehost services include two of the most popular site builders, WordPress(WP) and Weebly. With its accessibility and ease of use, WP is an undoubtedly a great open source platform, for everything ranging from blogs to full feature sites. WP themes also give you the option for either a simple or a more fancy approach in your design. With easy website navigation design, WP also does not require any comprehensive website management experience and is simple and functional. And with the ability to set up your own WP page at WordPress.org, you will be surprised with how quickly you can master it if only you toy around a little bit.
However, while WP and Weebly are known for ease of use and accessibility, Bluehost’s website builder, which offer themes and all the required plugins can help you with setting up a full feature site, especially if automated applications, which although can help simplify the process are not desired; what with all the possibility of a software glitch. A more manual way of approach often requires a lot more knowledge of the software and that is why WP is also in its own niche. A reliable website hosting service can save you a lot of time and effort, something which most site owners can appreciate.
Setting Up Your Website
With customer outreach and communicating with your market a key, a web hosting service that can offer a top notch blogging application is a necessity. This is especially true if you do not have time to regularly update the contents of your blog site, which can be critical in reaching out with a wider customer base. While developing new content for regular blog updates does take time, not doing so can mean that you can miss out on reaching out to many more people. BlueHost blogging application can ensure that your website has that edge when it comes to reliable site building blogging application, which can be one of the main tools in your internet marketing strategy.
While this might be the case, many web hosting companies can and do restrict the amount and number of sites that you can create using the site building application. Even worse, deciding to discontinue or stop using some of the proprietary software can even render your blooging network for all purposes useless. Not all site builders are what they promise, and in fact, even for established internet marketers, many site builders in the market today can be, in fact, quite expensive and difficult in use.
However, Bluehost’s web hosting services offer a number of choices for all your web hosting needs that actually work. Be your need be for a blogging platform with regular content development to unlimited web creation capability, Bluehost’s innovative approach offers the customer a number of benefits, some of which are:
- Blog Creation
- Automatic plugin installation
- Content development
- The availability of more than a thousand themes
- Effective site cloning
While I am not suggesting that the other web hosting platforms are not worth being recommended to the masses, it’s obvious that HostGator outperforms most of its rivals on several fronts. A reliable and fast growing technological edge alongside an amazing customer service and 99.9 per cent uptime collectively make it a safe option. Add to that the company’s reasonable pricing compared to most its competitors and you really don’t have much to complaint about.
Most of its features are designed to cater to both spectrums of the market – those who already have enough web hosting experience as well as those who are crating their first ever website.
When it comes to intuitive usability, BlueHost is definitely as impressive as HostGator is, if not more. The price is competitive (although a bit higher than HostGator). However, the most outstanding aspect about BlueHost is that if you are planning to create a WordPress website, there’s simply no match to its hosting platform. That’s precisely why so many bloggers across the world have long been using BlueHost’s services.
Even if you don’t want to build a WordPress site and would prefer sticking to the free native website builders, you are still in for a pretty lucrative deal.
What if you want to build a WordPress website using hosting services by HostGator or BlueHost
You can also choose to build your website using WordPress instead of the native site builders (both HostGator and BlueHost support WordPress websites). There are several benefits of using WordPress in your blog or website.
For those of you unfamiliar with it, WordPress is an open source, online website creation tool built in PHP. Simply put, it’s one of the easiest, most popular and all-in-one content management system for blogs as well as websites.
Contrary to popular misconception, WordPress is not merely a tool best suited for blogging websites. In fact, no matter what your website’s purpose is, if you want a dynamic, pro-quality website instead of a pool of static web pages written in HTML, then there’s no way on earth for you to undermine the awesome features accompanying WordPress.
Now, let’s have a closer look at some of the most exciting benefits that you can expect from a WordPress website hosted by BlueHost or HostGator:
Unless you were living inside a cave away from civilization for the better part of the last one decade, you are already aware how the web has come a long way since the time when merely putting up a website and leave it like that for years would suffice. Trends change, designs evolve, SEO metrics keep improving all the times and under such circumstances, if you cannot upgrade your website every now and then to fit the contemporary standards, your online presence would definitely turn into a mere formality.
And that’s precisely where WordPress plays a key role by allowing you upgrade your website with ease and thereby making it more SEO friendly. And as you perhaps already know, the best way to organically increase your search engine ranking is to frequently update your website with quality and relevant content.
You don’t have to have advanced web designing or programming knowledge in order to install WordPress and operate it with absolute ease. Just spend some time studying its various features and you should do just fine. Moreover, there are tons of free online tutorials available that you can refer to every time you hit a bump.
Because WordPress offers a huge (literally huge) collection of free themes, you can easily find one that suites your website the most. And even if you can not find a suitable free theme, there are still loads of quality themes available for purchase at reasonable price.
WordPress also offers an array of open source plugins that help you make your website look and function just the way you want. Installation of most of these plugins is incredibly easy and can be done with just a couple of clicks from the admin panel.
Regular updates to meet contemporary standards
WordPress issues regular updates to ensure you that you are provided with the perfect platform to upgrade your website in sync with the contemporary standards. These upgrades are easy to install and they usually bring to you loads of new and improved features.
To help you understand better, here’s a brief overview of some of most critical benefits that you can exploit by turning to WordPress:
- It allows you easily edit/add/delete web pages on your website
- You gain access to advanced navigational menus that also include categories
- Easy integration of blog and news section on the website
- You can easily add/embed images and videos on your website
- You can access and edit your website from any computer
- Add more flavor to the website by installing plugins
- It helps your website fare better in search engine results (improved SEO)
- You can easily adjust your website layouts
- Sidebars and footers that can be easily customized.
- Customized widgets in the sidebars (for example, new posts, popular entries, videos, etc.)
- It helps you maintain the desired uniformity in the design of the site while adding new content
- Easy social media integration with customizable features