Blogger is a free service and its very easy to setup your own blog. Even I started with hosting my site on Blogger. But I did have some bad experiences with blogger, the site was pretty slow and even the publishing used to take lot of time.
Then I decided to shift to wordpress. I had heard that WordPress was very powerful, fast and provides a host of features using plugin concept. So I had venukb.wordpress.com . It also came with a nice “importer” by which I could import all my Blogger blogs into WordPress.
After doing everything, I realized I didn’t have much control on the blog hosted on WordPress. I could select only the themes provided by WordPress.com and even the plugins provided were limited. There was no option for the user to install additional themes (templates) and plugins.
The true power of WordPress is when you host it on your own server. So if you guys are interested in setting up your own web site.. Read on.
The first thing you need is the domain name which is your address on the Internet. Domain name registration costs around 8.95$/year (apprx 500Rs). Of course you can register for more than a year ! .
You can register your domain name from either Directi Jodohost GoDaddy .. the list goes on. Some of the big names in domain name registration include Yahoo, Net4Domain etc. The domain is allotted immediately after you make the payment. Through a web based console you can configure your domain, nameserver info, whois info etc.
Where to Host ?
The next question is where to host the domain. Of course you can host it on your home PC. However you can’t switch on the PC for 365 days all round the clock. And bandwidth is also a constraint.
There are sites which offer free hosting, but you might need to accommodate their ads and you might not have complete control of what you want to do with your website. So you need to go for paid hosting ! For e.g for my economy paid hosting of GoDaddy I got
- 5 GB Space
- 250 GB Transfer
- 500 Email Accounts
- FREE! Software
- 10 MySQL Databases
- 50 Email Forwards
- Forums, Blogging, Photo Galleries
- No ads
You have host of other features like FTP access to your server, daily backups web site statistics etc. (GoDaddy offers domain registration at 1.99$ for the first year if you choose to host on their server. The economy hosting came upto 40$ which includes the domain registration as well).
Also you might need to choose between Linux and Windows servers. If you plan to use ASP you might, I mean you “have” to go for windows servers.
If you plan to use PHP (wordpress), then you can select the Linux servers. However the prices will generally be same for both Linux and Windows servers.
Also if you are planning to host wordpress on your site, see that you have MYSQL access. Once you make a payment, the server should be up and running within few minutes (even though the hosting provider might ask you to wait for 24 hrs)
You need to have a good web publishing tool to easily put up content on to your web site. WordPress is a very powerful publishing software and yes its free ! There are others like Dreamweaver, Movable Type etc but they come at a price. I will take a quick walkthrought of setting up wordpress
- Download wordpress archive from wordpress.org
- Extract the contents and FTP it to your server. If you want to host your blog on say www.yoursite.com/blog, create a directory named blog and copy the wordpress contents here.
- Create a MySql database and provided the connection details in wp_config.php file (you have rename the sample file).
- Install wordpress by using this URL www.yoursite.com/blog/wp-admin/install.php. If everything is configured properly, your blog should be up and running
- Access your admin page from www.yoursite.com/blog/wp-admin and start posting articles.
If you want this blog to be your start page, you can configure a redirection in so that when somebody types www.yoursite.com they are re-directed to www.yoursite.com/blog
What else can I do ?
You can partner with affiliate programs and have ads on your page. See that you don’t make ads your focus. If your site is receiving good amount of traffic you can also sign up for Google Adsense and put up google ads.
You should also sign up in technorati and register your blog. Considerable amount of traffic comes from there.
If you are ready to shell out 30$ then you can go for Mint
As I mentioned earlier, WordPress is very powerful, you can install plugins and themes and make your site more powerful. So go ahead and setup your own site !