How to Purchase Web Hosting and a Domain Name in 7 Minutes or Less
Apr 25, 2017
This post may contain affiliate links. Read my disclaimer policy here.
Setting up a website can feel like a daunting task. There is a lot of new terminology and so many options to choose from. Even if you are comfortable with some computer programs, it can feel overwhelming and time-consuming trying to understand it all. When I started with my first website I didn’t know what I was doing. I was intimidated and confused. I didn’t have a step by step process (like the one below). It can be easy to assume that the process of setting up a hosting service (choosing a company that provides the technologies and services needed for your website to be viewed on the Internet) is complicated and time-consuming, but it’s not. In fact, I’m going to walk you through how to do it in 7 minutes or less.
Step 1: Gather Your Resources
To set up a hosting account, you will need:
- A credit card
- A domain name (if you don’t have a domain name, I’ll show you how to get one, you will just need to know what name you would like. My domain name is contentcreatortoolbox.com. Another example would be yourname.com).
- About 7 minutes
Step 2: Purchase Hosting
The host is the company that will store your website information. Essentially, you will rent space for your website to “live.” It is way easier than it sounds, so stay with me. I’ll walk you through it step by step. There are a ton of website hosting services out there. Maybe you have heard of GoDaddy.com, BlueHost, HostGator, SiteGround, AsmallOrange, or InMotion. If you haven’t, no worries! Having my own sites, as well as working with clients, has given me the opportunity, I mean challenge, to work with many of the most popular hosting services. I’ve had the chance to experience their service and test their support and reliability. Today, I’m going to walk you through how to purchase a domain name and hosting from SiteGround, which is the only hosting company I recommend based on my usage. They are also the company that host this website, as well as the majority of my clients' sites. In case you are wondering, I have personally used BlueHost, Yahoo Small Business, A2 Hosting, and SiteGround. Out of these, SiteGround is the only one I recommend for the following reasons:
- Support. SiteGround has consistently provided me exceptional support! I don’t ever remember waiting longer than a minute for someone to be available on their chat support. I can open a support ticket and typically get my first response in about ten minutes. With A2 Hosting there were many times I waited 8 or more hours for a reply. On top of that, their chat was usually full, and when I did get a representative, they wanted to open a support ticket instead of solving the problem over the chat.
- Reliability. With SiteGround, I have spent the least amount of time worrying about whether my site is working properly or not. When I had BlueHost, my site was down so many times and their support hardly ever tried to help me fix the issue. I still hear time and time again from BlueHost users about their website going down.
- Price. SiteGround is inexpensive–about $3.95 to $11.95 a month, depending on which plan you select. Unlike many other hosting providers that require you to commit to the longest term to receive the best price, SiteGround's advertised discount applies to any of the initial periods chosen during the sign-up process.
- Sign up is super easy. They walk you through the process step-by-step (which you will see in a minute).
- Speed. When first starting out, I didn’t realize how important site speed is, but now I do. SiteGround provides tools (depending on the plan you choose) to help your site run fast.
Are you ready to dive in? Remember, I’ll walk you through each step!
- To get started, head on over to SiteGround’s website. You can click here to open their site in a new window so you can keep referencing these steps.
- On that page, you should see SiteGround’s Wordpress hosting plans. It should look something like this (you may have to scroll down the page a little) ⬇
- Here you can view their Wordpress hosting plans. I personally use the GoGeek plan. I love all of the extra features it has, but it’s up to you on which plan is best for your needs and budget. Here is SiteGround’s recommendation for choosing the right plan:
- The StartUp plan is perfect for people with one website that is starting now.
- The GrowBig plan is a great value for the money, including the option for multiple websites and the SuperCacher that greatly improves a WordPress and Joomla website speed.
- The GoGeek plan is perfect for people with e-commerce and larger sites, or more geeky development needs like staging and GIT integration.
- Once you find the plan you want, click on the orange “Get Started” button.
- The next page that loads should look like this ⬇
- If you do NOT have a domain name, select “Register a New Domain” and follow the prompts to choose your name and add it to your order. *I personally use Google Domains for my sites, but for simplicity, I'm going to stick with showing you how to purchase it through SiteGround. I just wanted you to know that there are other options and what I use.
- If you HAVE a domain name, select “I already have a Domain” and follow the prompts. If you are moving your site from another host, SiteGround offers FREE website transfer, which I have used. This made it super easy to move my sites from my previous host. It was all completed in less than 24 hours compared to A2 Hosting, which offered the same service and took a couple of days.
- The next page you come to should look something like this (it will probably ask you to create a password and username and provide your address in addition to what you see below)⬇
- It will show you the plan you selected and the discount you are receiving off the standard price.
- If you would like to change the length of your service, you can select the drop-down box and change the service length. Just know that the introductory discount you are receiving is yours for the duration you select here and will likely renew at a higher rate.
- Keep in mind that you will pay the annual rate in advance for the duration you choose.
- Once you enter the required fields, review the information, and confirm that everything is correct, then select “Pay Now”.
- Once the payment is submitted, you will see a "Thank You" page and within a couple of seconds, the SiteGround team will send you a welcome email with all the login credentials and your receipt.
Way to go! You did it! I hope this made the signup process super simple for you! What questions do you have about the process of setting up your website? I’m here to help!