Web Hosting Explained
How do I get my website on the internet?
So now you’ve had your website built and you’re ready to show it off to the world.
How do you do that?
Well all websites need 2 further things so that your potential customers can view it.
The first thing you need is a domain name, and the second thing you need is a host, or a server.
What is a domain name?
A domain name is simply that. A name that you are going to reference your website by so that people know how to find it.
It’s actually like a telephone number. When you dial a telephone number you get connected to the person you want to speak to. If you get the number slightly wrong then you get connected to somebody else, or not connected at all.
It’s the same with domain names. If you get it slightly wrong when typing into your computer you end up somewhere else. That’s why it’s a good idea to keep domain names as simple as possible by avoiding difficult words to spell, or dashes in between the words etc.
It’s generally a good idea to have your domain name in keeping with your website theme, but not essential. The search engines such as Google don’t particularly put much importance on domain name relevance these days, instead preferring to focus more on great relevant content.
So you may wish to use your own name as the name of your website, particularly if you are offering professional services. But essentially you can call your website what you want. Think of B&Q for example. Their domain name doesn’t mention B&Q at all, but is www.diy.com.
.co.uk, .com or .org. Which to use?
There are different levels of authority with domains, and it’s all about the bit that comes after the dot at the end of your website name. For example www.yourwebsite.com.
Historically .COM was the original domain ending that was associated with commercial activity and is known as a TLD (top level domain). In the UK, we adopted .co.uk as our preferred business extension, which is also a TLD. Other TLD’s include .org, .uk, .edu, .gov etc.
Each country has their own extension and if your business is local then generally your country extension is very relevant as it lets your customers know they are dealing with a local business rather than .com which could be anywhere in the world, and very likely the USA.
Where and how to purchase a domain name.
There are literally thousands of domain name brokers all over the globe. Some sell only domain names, while others also offer website hosting packages. You simply register (free) with your chosen provider and search the database to see if your chosen name is available, or if somebody else has registered it. Each variant of name can only be registered once. For example, you couldn’t have 2 people owning diy.com.
Once you’ve paid your fee then the domain is registered to you via the handful of organisations throughout the world that control and monitor domain registrations. It’s a bit like purchasing a car registration number which is then registered with the DVLA in Swansea.
The registration fee is paid annually (essentially you are renting it), and if you don’t renew it you can lose it.
What is hosting?
In simple terms your website must be loaded on to a server (also known as a host) which is essentially like a super computer in a telephone exchange. When somebody types your domain name into their computer or tablet device, it’s essentially like dialling a telephone number. The server (or host) recognises who you want and connects you to the website or web page you are requesting.
You pay a monthly fee (usually paid annually) to host your website, and there are usually upgrades to maintain it, keep it secure etc.
So who do you choose as a host?
Basically, you can choose whoever takes your fancy, there are literally thousands of them. Your main choice is whether you are going to host your new website with the company that built it for you and let them look after it, or have your own hosting account and have control over your own website. I’ve seen both sides of the coin and offered both options, so here’s my opinion.
Choosing a company to build your website and host on their platform is the easy option on the face of it. However, there will still be annual fees which can often be expensive as they know most people can’t be bothered with moving their website to another host or simply don’t know they can, or feel that it might be disastrous to move it. Often, the company doesn’t make it that easy as they are losing a client. Additionally upgrades to the website and maintenance packages can be expensive as they have a captive audience.
However, the biggest thing to worry about in my opinion is that you don’t know how stable the host company is, and where in the world its severs are located. If it’s only a small organisation that looks like a big player then what happens if it goes out of business, or the owner/operator becomes ill for example. Your hosting ceases along with your website, and potentially your business.
A lot of operators that claim to have their own servers are actually renting space in server hubs that could be anywhere in the world.
Who does Local Trade Link use?
After using various hosts over many years I have settled on Krystal Hosting.
They are a UK based company with UK based operations and incredibly helpful support.
They offer very competitive hosting packages, you can register and manage your domain names with them, or transfer any existing domain names over to use with your website.
Krystal is now the sole provider of hosting for websites built at Local Trade Link.
By opening a hosting account through one of the links or images on this page, we can then build your new website directly within your hosting platform. Once completed you have total control over your own website, domain name and hosting.
We needn’t have any further involvement unless you want us to through our SEO and Blog Writing service.
So find out more about Krystal UK hosting,and get the latest prices and offers by clicking here (KRYSTAL HOSTING). It costs you nothing until you purchase your chosen package.
Then let us know and we will start designing your website. It’s that easy.