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Starting a web site

Discussion in 'Digital Marketing' started by pdenney11, Dec 4, 2008.

  1. pdenney11

    pdenney11 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 380

    I have started to build my own web site. It looks decent, it will work for now until I learn more about it.
    What I would like to know is how i launch it to the internet. I do not know what steps and cost are involved in this process. How do I get a domain and hosting? How much does this cost? Whats the best place to go through? I have SBC global as a ISP, does anyone know if they can do any kind of hosting for my site?
  2. Lawn-Scapes

    Lawn-Scapes LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,810

    I used godaddy to purchase my domain name. I bought both the com & net with private registration for 3 years. Cost was just under 110. I went with bluehost for my hosting.. again 3 years. Cost was just under 180. I went with three years because it was.. cheaper, and secondly.. I was told search engines like to see a long term commitment. It was also recommended that I do not use the same place for domain and hosting.

    Good luck...

    BTW.. there is a hosting banner/offering somewhere here on lawnsite.
    Last edited: Dec 4, 2008
  3. Team-Green L&L

    Team-Green L&L LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,775

    What elements do you plan on your site hosting? Just pictures and text? Do you want to eventually have streaming video (like commercials), how much traffic do you think you'll get? How much do you know about being a webmaster to start with?

    Those are the questions to ask yourself because all hosting providers are unique in ways. I used to use Godaddy until I started to video sites and built a bunch of databases to store info on. The ffmpeg feature I used to stream videos was considered against Godaddy's rules (which no one told me until...) and they suspended the site until I removed it. I found out that my site(s) were down when I tried to access one and not a minute sooner. Who knows how much business I lost. Now I use Apthost.com (and simply LOVE them) because they support ffmpeg and streaming video, are cheaper, have live customer service that are in Texas and are ALWAYS within a minute wait on the phone or chat, and they have a cPanel admin side which is indispensable once you've used it. Kinda like the DVR...
  4. Team-Green L&L

    Team-Green L&L LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,775

    Now, if you're a newbie and want to pay monthly to have an easy site builder, be tricked into unwanted services, talk to Indians that don't speak English after pressing 300 buttons and waiting through an hour of elevator music only to be told that you'd "save 30% if you pay for a year today". Then you ask your question, which must be transfered because you, most certainly, are at the wrong department. And the whole process starts again... then Godaddy is the service for you.

    All this and you just wanted to see why you cannot access your account or your site was down.
  5. WebMan

    WebMan LawnSite Member
    from D/FW TX
    Messages: 11

    First you need a domain name. Be careful. You can get your domain name from your host and a few are honest and will register the name properly where you have full ownership and control, I believe that's the only honest way.
    But many hosts have a "gotcha" in there somewhere with the domain & if you don't like the host you're stuck (I just talked to a fellow from here today who is trying to get his "away" from another company).
    So it's more hassle but if you want to be sure; use a domain registrar like GoDaddy or Dotster. HOWEVER I strongly suggest avoiding their hosting plans.
    Until a couple of years ago when the "Internet bubble" burst those companies didn't do anything but names...now they try to sell you their hosting and a bunch of other stuff you don't need...as the old saying goes "Just Say No" and only buy the name.
    There are plenty of good hosts and a good business-grade hosting company with everything you could ever need won't cost over $10 a month. Then if you don't like the host you can just move. (Don't pre-pay -- do month-to-month billing; at least until you are 100% sure you intend to stay there)

    That's it. Then just upload your site and you are "on-line"...The whole process shouldn't take more than 20-30 minutes not counting time spent researching hosts before you decide (avoid the $2 & $3 types... expect between $7-$10 a mo. for a good quality host with good support-you will need phone support & support tickets for a while until you get the hang of things so a host with good support is important)
    Also avoid all the "best host list" type sites when shopping; they are invariably owned by the top rated companies on the "list" or else hosts pay to get top listings.

    You won't need more than 50MB of disk even a huge site won't use 1GB so avoid the 100GB disk storage "deals" and you'll never hit even 1GB of "transfer" or bandwidth unless you have a huge site with thousands of visitors so avoid the "1,000GB transfer" types also. Those are just huge numbers some companies use as a marketing gimmick because they know you will never use it.

    Best wishes...
  6. pdenney11

    pdenney11 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 380

    Thanks for all the great advice guys. This will be a basic web site, nothing to fancy. As of now I have 4 pages- home, about us, services and free estimates which has a request form for more info and an estimate. I would like to get a few pics (4-7) up of some of the work I have done. Thats really all I need out of the site. I doubt I will ever have a need for the video. I doubt it will be a high traffic site either.

    I have most of the site done but I need to clean it up a little and make it look more professional. I am just using software that came with my computer, it's called frontpage.

    Could a professional web designer work off of the page I have created if i decide I just dont have the time to finish it? All the info I need on it is already there so all they would have to do is change the layout, give it a nice theme and make everything flow together. What do you think I would get charged for something like this?

    If I did have a web designer do it for me, would they take care of the hosting and domain to get it up and running or would I still have to do this process?

    Thanks again for being such a great help.
  7. WebMan

    WebMan LawnSite Member
    from D/FW TX
    Messages: 11

    Depends on the host, a very few like me who also do site work can do everything you are asking but most hosts only host and most designers just have a reseller account if they say they offer hosting too (and they usually overprice it, a participant from here who called yesterday was glad he did because the company that was going to do his site and hosting was charging $50 a month (and that "included" one hour of "support" ;) ) he was shopping and I didn't ask what he had been offered but when I totaled up what we charge to do the 2 or 3 different things he needed; he said he was sure glad he decided to "check a little more" to be sure that was as good of a deal as that outfit was telling him and said that was what they would have charged...
    But most regular "hosts" don't work on web sites and most good site designers either have 2 or 3 they recommend or just let you choose. The only reason I do some design is because it an "on the side" deal for me personally. (That's why my signature says "occasional") I do just enough to keep my "hand in"---like most hosts you won't see it listed on my hosting site as something we offer because I don't have a staff of designers or anything. I just enjoy still doing some.
    But to answer your question usually it's best not to have a designer do your hosting because they usually are resellers. A designer in the price range for landscaping sites won't have their own servers (Unless they do $10,000+ custom sites; then they may have servers custom configured especially for the way they design sites - but that's not your case.)

    PS: I also have every version of FrontPage since the 90's, seems a lot of my older customers have situations similar to yours, they built a site in FrontPage years ago when it was still being sold and still need maintenance & upgrades on them but don' want/need a whole new site yet. The basics of FrontPage will still work for years to come but things like the "contact" forms are a hacker/spammmers dream so those things that Front Page did with what it called "web bots" like those forms are what's fast becoming obsolete. (and Microsoft no longer supports it with patches or upgrades.)
  8. greenbaylawns

    greenbaylawns LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 563

  9. pdenney11

    pdenney11 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 380

    Anyone have any info on using there services? greenbay please give more info if possible.
  10. Lawn-Scapes

    Lawn-Scapes LawnSite Silver Member
    Messages: 2,810

    Purchasing a domain & host is not a painful process and is your responsibility. Unless you don't want to own and have control of your site :confused: After that.. your designer can upload and maintain your site for you if you wish.

    I just went through everything you're asking in the last few weeks and am quite pleased with the results. Check out my site...

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