How to Set Up a Website for a Little More Than $100
Are you a small business owner or possibly looking to set up a personal website? Setting up a website can be done for a little over $100. This includes your own domain; not a subdomain like www.theirwebsite.com/yourwebsite. I mean your own website like www.yourwebsite.com, .org, .net, etc. Some domain titles are going to cost more than others so you just need to make sure your domain title is not something extremely popular. My personal name domain; www.JenniferBuchanan.com ended up listed as $1,688. So I chose to pass on that and come up with my own unique domain name. To begin you can open a free account with GoDaddy. I only offer this web company because this is who I used for mine. There are others and it is a good idea to shop around.
Setting up a web account is easy. You can begin by experimenting and looking up domain names to see if yours has been taken or is available. Once you find an available domain choose to purchase a two year contract or if you don't mind spending a little more and saving more you can choose to set up a longer contract. A two year contract should fall right around the price of $15.00.
Once you have your domain you still need someone to provide a place to store your website files and other things you'd like to store on the internet. You are going to need a host for your domain. A host is similar to a harddrive online. You can choose a host that suits your website's needs. Hosts can range in price so make sure you shop around. You can have a domain from one web company and a host from another. It is easier on you to set up a domain and host with the same company, and less confusing.
Now that you have a domain and a host you can begin your design. There are so many web designing programs out there these days. You can also download many different trial versions off the internet. If you already have Publisher; they offer a great website designing program. This is what I used. With any website designing program you are going to need to bring out your creativity. There are templates already set up if you don't have a lot of time or you can bring out your artistic side and really be unique. Designing a website can take quite awhile but if you want to save money do it yourself. Make sure your pages are easy to read and that they all link up together sending one page to another and then back again. You can usually take a tutorial of the program you are using to become more familiar with it. If anyone would like me to write something on how to design a website let me know.
Once you have your website designed you are going to need to upload it to your host. Depending on which program you used depends on the best way to upload it. If you are unsure you can always call the company you used to design it and the hosting company for assistance. If you used Publisher and Godaddy here is how it works. First, with your website design open in Publisher, drop down your file list and click publish to the web. Then choose a safe, memorable place to save your file and don't change the name unless you are an advanced user. Then open your Godaddy account. When you are signed on drop down your hosting list and select my hosting account. Select manage account for the correct domain title and select file manager from the content drop down menu. Once your file manager is open you should see an existing file labeled HTML. Select create new directory. Name your new directory index_files. Now you are going to open your new folder you just created. When your index_files folder is open you are going to select upload from the folders above. Browse for your website files where you saved them and open the index_files folder on your computer. Select everything in that folder and upload. After all of your files are uploaded; select the HTML folder and then select upload again on the Godaddy file manager. You are going to need to upload the other file you saw where you saved your website to your computer. It will be labeled index.htm. Upload this file into your HTML folder in your file manager and you are set to go. Leave this page open and type in your domain name on the internet. Check it out see if it worked. If your website is there you are done and can close out Godaddy. Congratulations!
There are so many other neat things you can get free for your website that hosting companies charge you for. You can most times get free email with your domain name. Example: email@example.com. I know Qwest account holders get this service free with their internet service. Try this: domains.live.com. You can also get more traffic coming to see your website by going to each search site and finding the correct link to have that search engine search your site. It is sometimes hard to find and most times they want you to create a free account with them; which is fine. You join and they add your site to their search engine. You can also get a free statistics counters so you know how many customers or people are visiting your site. This is a great benefit, because if you have no idea if you website is being used you won't know whether you need to find different advertising to get your name out there.
There are many websites out there that offer neat, free, frills for your website design. These are great ways to spruce up your site, just make sure you have a good antivirus program because some of them require you to download files and you don't want to get a virus. If you have a good antivirus program your program will prohibit these corrupt files before you download. Be safe.
Well there you have it. A website for a little more than $100. Have fun with it.