A Domain Name
I started websiting back in 2008 and my first site was a Blogger blog. I knew nothing when I started. I’ve learned a lot since.
When I began, Blogger was free and popular, and seemed like a quick way to start so it made sense to use the Blogger platform. I soon realized it wasn’t that simple. It takes just as much effort to develop a canned website as it does to select and self host your own domain name.
I also realized that it is never entirely yours or what you want.
The domain name I had in mind (thinkaboutit) wasn’t available on Blogger and whatever name I chose was followed by the words blogspot.com anyway. It was never going to be my name.
There were also no names even distantly similar. The domain name I eventually chose, taitoday, was the closest thing I could get. There was no winning!
Don’t get me wrong. I’m not badmouthing Blogger. It got me started and I’m thankful for what the experience taught me about domain names and websiting.
After becoming frustrated with the limitations, though, I did a little research and took the plunge.
I’ve also started thinking specifically about domain names and have bought a few. Following are three examples and they are for sale.
- SplainThat.com ($218.00)
- AskingNotSaying.com ($202.00)
- ThinkingNotSaying.com ($197.00)
If you are thinking about starting a website and you find one of these names useful, contact me and we can go from there. Otherwise you can use a site like NameCheap to find and register a name you prefer. Registration and privacy run around $10.00. You can’t find it less expensive than NameCheap.com.
If you’re not sure, following are the options to choose from.
Hire Someone To Design Your Website
This is an attractive option for a static site but don’t be fooled by the word static. Even static sites need maintenance and hosting.
A static site is like an online brochure. It has three to six pages providing information about an organization or business. Sounds simple. Hire someone to design a three or four page site giving pertinent details about your business and let people find you online.
Here’s the rub. The public image of your site – what people actually see online – may never change but the software side will always need updating. Digital technology is in a constant state of flux. If you don’t update regularly, your site becomes vulnerable to digital diseases that eventually stop it from working.
What that means is you will continue to pay fees for both maintenance and hosting. Hosting is an enormous topic but suffice it to say that a hosting company gives your site an address. You don’t own the address, you only rent it, which usually means you’ll pay regularly to keep your site up and running.
Use Free Website Services
Free websites are the craze (Webs, Wix, Weebly and more) but there is a catch. They all have limitations! The basic domain name packages may be free but once you’re in, you’ll want more options, which only come at a cost.
Probably the least expensive of all the free options is Blogger and I’ve already mentioned some of the limitations.
There is a third option.
Buy Your Own Domain Name And Self Host
With no experience, it can be scary but the learning curve isn’t any more involved than the other options. Additionally, there are so many people taking this approach and writing about their experience, you’ll easily find someone explaining how to solve just about any problem.
Free platforms like WordPress make getting started as easy as any and with over a million active websites on the net and a broad community of developers lending support, you’ll always have someone to ask your particular question.
If you want a website, start at the ground level and build your own. In the long run you’ll be glad you did.