When setting up a new website for your business I find so many people get stuck at the first hurdle, and that is understanding domains and hosting. So in this post I want to explain the difference and remove the mystery.
So what is your domain ?
Your domain is simply the address of your website (or other service on the internet), i.e www.businessequip.co.uk. You register your domain with a domain registrar such as 123-Reg or Go Daddy. Domains come with different extensions such as .com or .co.uk, but there are now many new ones such as .co .tv .info, personally I would still go for a co.uk domain if you are planning to run your business just in the UK. A co.uk domain will cost about £10 per year to register.
Once you have your domain registered you just need to point the address to your website. This is done by managing your DNS Settings of your domain.
The destination is the IP address of the server that host your site.
So what is web hosting ?
Every website needs a physical space where it is held on the internet, this is called a web server. A computer that holds all your website code, content and images. We now generally use a hosting company who manages these physical servers for us and we pay a rental charge.
Hosting companies offer a variety of services and the cost of hosting can vary from 99p per month to £100s per month. However you get what you pay for, cheaper hosting will generally be slower and less secure. Some web hosting companies will manage the servers and set them up for you, while with others you are on your own.
Personally for a WordPress website I would recommend wp-engine, they other a fully managed service which is tailored for WordPress sites, not the cheapest but fast and their security is guaranteed.
Understanding and setting up your domain and hosting is the most technical part of setting up your website, once done the fun can begin, that is why we often do this for our clients and hold their hand though this stage of setting up their website. We can also offer hosting with wp-engine at a discounted rate.