August 28, 2014

How to Create a Blogspot Blog

Create a blogger blog

Whenever someone with not much experience with online technologies tell me that they want to create a blog I suggest them to go with blogger/blogspot.


Reasons are:
1. You don't have to signup for any hosting.
2. You don't have to get your own domain (Though I strongly recommend getting one). You can host on .blogspot subdomain.
3. You can start very quickly. You only have to click some buttons and fill some forms and you are all set. You don't have to download any package, do FTP, create MySQL databases and many other stuff that self hosted blogs require.
4. You can test the waters before getting too serious. I have seen many people getting excited with blogging and later find it as a burden.
5. You don't have to manage many plugins and other technical stuff. Although their are many you can choose from when you get comfortable.
6. ITS FREE. Yes you don't have to pay any fees to blogger to create and host your blog. To make the deal more sweet you can earn money by displaying ads from Adsense. Blogger and Adsense both are owned by Google and they are integrated together well. You can signup to Adsense from within the blogger dashboard.
7. You can always get your data if you don't want to keep your blog with blogger any more.
8. You can create a private blog that only users you allow can read.

In short if you create your blog with blogger you only need to have passion to create great content and share it with others.

Now if you are ready lets start with the steps to create your first blogspot/blogger blog:

1. Go to and sign in with your google account. If you do not have a google account click on the link saying "Create and account" below the login box and create you account

2. After log in if it ask for your phone number its up to whether to provide it or not. If you don't want click on the "skip" link. You may not see this page and go straight to the blogger dashboard. If that is the case move on to the 3rd step.

3. You will now see the blogger dashboard. Click on the button saying "New blog" to create a new blog. Have a look at the screenshot below.

4. A new box will open within the same window. It will ask you to fill these fields:
i. Title: This will be the title of your blog. If you haven't decided yet no need to worry you can change it anytime later.
ii. Address: This will be the URL of your blog if you want to host it as If you are going to use your own domain you don't need to think much about it. Choose any and you can point your domain later to this blog. If you are going to host it on blogspot domain you can either choose carefully now or you can change it later.
iii. Template: This is the design of your blog. You selection will determine how your blog will look like. You can change it later so no need to think too much at this stage.

5. After you have filled all the fiends above click on the create blog. This will create your blog on blogspot subdomain you have chosen in previous step.

After this you will get redirected to blogger dashboard and you can see your blog listed as mine. I have highlighted it in the box. If you can see the same your blog is created and you can start posting by clicking on the "start posting" link or that "button with the pencil icon" on the right side.

Thats it!
Congratulations! You have created you first blog and you are ready to to post to it.

I will write about the various settings you can do to make it better and more functional. Meanwhile take a look through the blogger dashboard and make yourself familiar with it.

Have fun and do comment.

July 20, 2014

Build Website

Out of the three basic steps of creating a website we have already talked about how to choose a domain and how to choose web hosting. Next step is to make the actual website that will be served to your vIsitors. This is a vast topic so in this post I will only talk about the common type of websites. I will explain about each one in detail later in separate posts.

Static website or dyanamic website? 

Static website shows basic html pages to visitors and its one way communication only. Visitors can not send message or leave comments. If you want your visitors to contact you you will need to provide contacts details like email address or phone number on website. However, there are many third party services available now. By using them you can add contact box or comment options to static websites.

Dynamic websites generated pages dynamically from some data source (most commonly a database) and serve them to visitors. These websites can also record comments or messages from visitors without using any third party services. Its 2 way communication. These websites requires some type of programming or scripting language. Most commonly used are php, ASP.NET, python, ruby. There are numerous other you can use.

If you have planned your website beforehand you must be knowing about the type of website you want.

Common type of websites:
Personal websites
Content websites
Company websites
Ecommerce website
Social networks

Let's talk about them one by one.

1. Blogs:
Blogs are like online journals. Entries arrange in reverse chronological order i.e. newest entry first.
Blogs can be further divided into personal blogs and business blogs. 

Personal blogs are created by any person to share their personal thought or anything they want to share.

Business blogs are maintained by businesses to share things about their business like latest news, product introductions, how to use their products etc.

Creating a blog: 
You can either install some blogging software on your hosting or choose from many services where you can create your blog either for free or for some fee. Most popular blogging platforms are WordPress, blogger(blogspot) and tumblr.

WordPress come in two flavours where you can create a blog for free and will host it for free with some restrictions. is site from where you can download wordpress software and host it on your own hosting. Self hosted are preferred option. is most popular hosted blogging platform owned by Google. It is completely free. If you have a google account you can login to blogger and start your blog in minutes.

Tumblr is relatively new service owned by yahoo. It is also hosted like blogger and is completely free. It is also a social network. 

2. Personal websites:
These websites are built to introduce or update information about certain individuals. For example politicians make websites telling about their past life and work done by them.

Creating a personal website:
Personal websites can be created easily by editing html templates and adding required content into it but its more convenient to use wordpress to create website using a appropriate wordpress theme. 
If you want to to it with template method you can find numerous templates (both free and paid) by searching on google.
If you considering wordpress to make your website you can get many wordpress themes (free and paid) too. There are many benefits of going this route:

  • You (mostly) don't have to mess with the html while creating the website.
  • You can create more pages very easily. That will save a lot of time.
  • You can use any of the numerous wordpress plugins to add additional functionalities to your site with minimum of work. 
  • managing website is comparatively very easy. 

3. Content websites:
As the name suggest content websites serve various kind of content to the users. Content may be images, news articles, music files, videos, maps or any other kind of content. Example youtube is video site, flickr is image hosting site, sound cloud is music/sound hosting site, is news site.

Creating a content website:
Different type of content require different type of website to display properly. A news website can be made just like a blog. You can start a news website with wordpress and a theme displaying news in better way. There are themes available for wordpress to make video and image hosting sites.

4. Company websites: 
These are like personal websites but they are built to provide information about company and their products and services. Companies can also provide support and additional services to their customers on their website. Also they get valuable feedback from their customers.

Creating company website:
Creating a company website is little different. If you want a simple website you can build it just like a personal website i.e. by finding a appropriate html template and editing it or using wordpress with appropriate theme.
If your requirement is little more than that, for example if you want to add customer support system, you may have to get it custom coded. It all depend on what you want with your website.

5. eCommerce websites: 
These are website where seller enlist their products with price and other information related to the product and visitors can buy them on the website. Example amazon and eBay.

Creating a eCommence website:
Creating a eCommerce website requires an online cart software (free and paid both are available) or you can use any of the specialised online cart solutions like shopify
Weebly also offer  online cart if you want to sell something. 
Some people also use paypal button on website pages to sell their products and services.
You may also need to signup with a payment processor service to accept payments from the buyers.

6. Social networks:
These websites let people communicate with each other online. Example are Facebook and twitter.

Creating a Social network:
Creating a social network used to be a difficult task but now you can get special script and services using any of those you can create you own social network easily. I have personally used boonex dolphin and social engine softwares and ning's hosted service to create social networks. 

7. Forums:
These are like online discussion groups. Most of online forums are built around specific topics and they promote user interactions with each other. Example

Creating a Forum:
Just like blog creation you can create a forum by downloading forum software and installing it on your web hosting or you can register with any forum hosting service.
Both free and paid options are available in both categories. 
Most popular free forum softwares are phpBB, SMF and vanilla forums.
Most popular paid softwares are vBulletin, XenForo and IP.Board.
IP. Board and vanilla forums also provide hosted services.

I will discuss creating website in details in separate blog posts. You can subscribe to this blog to get notified when new post are live.

March 28, 2014

Choosing Web Host : 30 Tips

When you build a website you need a special type of computer where you store your website and it runs continuously day and night to serve your website to the visitors whenever they visit. Although you can host your website on your own computer but that is cumbersome and also not many of us wants to keep our computer running continuously 24x7.
For this purpose you can buy web hosting space on these special type of computers called as web servers.
These servers are special computing machines built for the sole purpose of serving websites. There are various types of web hosting you can buy but not all will suite your needs.
Here are few points you should consider before choosing a web hosting:

1. Type of Website:

If you are building a website just for fun i.e. its not an important site and you do not expect many people are going to visit, you can use a free hosting but do not expect much from them. Free hosting comes with many handicaps and most important thing you should be aware of is that you can loose you website and data any time and you can not claim anything on free web host.
For serious websites I strongly recommend using a paid web hosting server that range from cheap shared hosting to VPS and costly dedicated servers.

2. Technology to use:

Although websites are always delivered as HTML pages the technology that use to serve these HTML pages is not same. You can save your website pages as HTML but using a programming language to serve these pages dynamically gives many more benefits.
Most commonly used web programing languages used to make websites are PHP, ASP.NET, PERL, Python, Ruby on rails, node.js and many more. Most of these languages work with Linux operating systems except ASP.NET where you need to have windows based servers.
You should choose web host according to your website needs.

3. Control Panel:

Web hosts now provides web based control panels so you can manage many tasks like adding domains, making sub domains, managing your website files and many more without having to contact web host's support for every small task.
Most linux web hosting services like hostgator, bluehost now provide cPanel and in my view if you are not too good in technical stuff you should choose a cPanel based web hosting as it saves too many headaches.
For windows ASP.NET hosting you should go for Plesk.
Some web hosting companies like mediatemple provide their proprietary control panels that serves the purpose nicely.

4. Website Builder:

If you haven't built your website and want to use website builders provided by web host that you should look for a host with nice website builder. In this case I recommend using services like wix or weebly to make your website and you won't have to buy your own web hosting. You can make your website and they will host your website for you. Their base package is free and most of the people do not need to upgrade to paid plans.

5. Web Host Support:

Before I go into the details of web hosting features to look at I like to strongly point out this, "You should always go for a web host that has better support even if it cost more".
Just imagine how much frustrating it will be if your website goes down at midnight and you web hosting guys are sleeping in their bed while you are pulling your hairs furiously.
Some web host provide only email/ticket based support and others provide phone facility in addition to it. You should go for web host providing phone support (preferably toll free) but check their phone support beforehand. Some providers may give you support phone numbers but they will never pick it, stay away from them.
Some providers are even trickier, they have working phone support but they only provide fast services for sales related queries but their technical support is not that efficient. To stay away from these type of hosts you should look at the reviews of these hosts. We will talk more about reviews later.

6. Free Domain Policy:

Many web host provide free domain name with purchase of web hosting, specially with their annual plans. Never forget to ask them about their free domain policy. Main questions to get answers are:
i) On whose name the domain will be registered? Domain should be on your name.
ii) Is free domain is for first year only or for lifetime of your hosting account? Some host gives domain registration for first year only and will ask you to pay additional amount to get the domain renewed after initial duration ends.
iii) What will happen to the free domain if you later on want to cancel your web hosting account? Will they release the domain so you can only renew domain and cancel webhosting?
iv) What if you want to transfer your domain to other domain registrar? Some web hosts force you to get domain renewed from them at much higher costs as compared to other registrar. Stay away from them.
v) Is there any additional charge if you want to transfer the domain to other registrar? Some hosts may lock your domain to their services and demand high prices if you want to transfer your domain to other registrar.

7. Server configuration: RAM, CPU/Processor:

Some small web host get cheap machines and start their web hosting companies. These servers may not be able to handle the slightest of the spike in load. These machines are not suitable for any serious website to be hosted on. Renowned hosts like hostgator and bluehost are known to use state of the art machines and data centers. Mediatemple goes even further and they host your websites on what they call as Grid-servers i.e. you website is not stored on one machine but on many servers so even if the load on one server increases other server keeps on serving your website to visitors. For this reason mediatemple hosts some of the biggest website on the internet.

8. Server location and target audience:

Most of the web hosts have their servers in USA but you may want to host your website on server located in the region where your target audience is. This gives benefit of fast page loading and better connectivity. This also benefits as the support staff is better familiar about the traffic spike time and management and also you can get cheaper call rates if phone support is not toll free.

9. Ping / Traceroute:

You can get the ip address of the server from the support staff and check their ping and traceroute stats.
Pings are the time taken by the request from the moment you sent request to server to the reply you get from server. Lower ping times are better. To know ping time use this command on windows command prompt:
 > ping "server ip/domain name"
Your request to server goes through different networks and servers, this is called route. The number of hops your request have to make to reach the server is called traceroute. Lower values of traceroute is better. To know traceroute use this command on windows command prompt:
> tracert "server ip/domain name"

10. Reseller or real host:

Big web hosting companies allow small web host or individuals to start their own web hosting services by selling Reseller Plans. Resellers are not real web hosts they are only collecting payments and selling services of other companies. You should stay aware of these as tech support is provided by the server owning company and not by the reseller. When you talk to sales support the reseller is replying and when you talk to tech support some guy from other company reply. Sometimes the tech support requests are to be forwarded by the reseller, that can result in slower support and frustrations.

11. Space and bandwidth(data transfer):

Earlier when the cost of hard drives and data transfer were high, web host used to give very little web hosting space and bandwidth but now most of the host provide enough of both. Still you should check your requirements. If you want to host and serve large media files like videos and images then you will need much more space and data transfer in comparison to a normal website.

12. Truth of unlimited space/ bandwidth:

Now a days you will find lots of hosts are providing webhosting plans with unlimited space and bandwidth. Remember there is no such thing as unlimited. They have fair usage policy in place that regulates the amount of space and data you can use. Ask your web host about the usage policy before signing up. This can save you many billing headcaches.

13. https / SSL support:

If you are planning to start a ecommerce website where you will be collecting buyer's credit card details or your website collect any other sensitive information then you will need https/SSL support. You should ask your web host about this and also about whether they will charge additional for it.

14. Custom email address, pop mail, mail forwarding:

If you are running a business, custom email address on your domain name like "" make your business look more trustworthy. Ask your web host whether they provide custom email addresses, mailboxes etc. Pop mail is required if you want to connect to your mail box using outlook or similar application. You can also forward your mail to your primary mailbox if your web host support mail forwarding.

15. Autoresponders:

Auto responders are special software that helps in better communications with your site's visitors/customers. You write mails in advance and the software send it to the customer when they try to contact you. For example, if you are going on vacation you can set up an auto responder that will reply with information about you being unavailable, when you will be back and whom to contact in case of any emergency. If you think you need it then ask your webhost whether they provide it or not.

16. Uploading method/ FTP:

Now days most of the web host provide FTP for file transfer but still there are few who still provide only web based file transfer that is slow and there may be limits on file type and size. You should ask for FTP access as it is faster and also you can upload large files and folders with much ease. If a webhost provide SSH access in addition to FTP then it is even better.

17. Logs: webalizer/awstats:

Logs are the files that saves the data regarding your visitors. There are other ways by which you can track your visitors like google analytics but having logs programs gives you access to more data and data is always good. Most popular log programs are webalizer and awstats. This point is not a deal breaker for most.

18.Up-time guarantee and how they honor it:

Your web host provider is supposed to keep your website up and running 24x7 but there are times when something goes wrong and your web host need some time to fix the problem so they can not keep you website up 100% of the time. You should signup with a host which provides more than 99.9% uptime guarantee. Now you will find many host who promise of  > 99.9% uptime but they do not tell you what if your website goes down too frequently. Renowned hosts gives you money back guarantee if your website goes down more than expected. Look for uptime guarantee while signing up. 

19. File size and type limitations:

Some host forbid to store certain types of files on their servers. for example many have problem with executable files, other don't allow adult stuff, copyrighted files etc. If you are planning to host such file ask your webhost in advance or later you may fall in trouble. Also ask them about the file size limitations or they may delete large files without notifying you.

20. Backup method and restore cost:

This one is important: Always go for a host that offers automated backup of your data. Loosing your data is most scary thing that can happen to any webmaster. If your web takes regular backup then you can be assured that you will get your data back if something goes wrong. I get weekly emails from hostgator regarding my data got backed up, It really help me in sleeping well :)
Also ask if there is any fee you have to pay if you ever need to get your data restored from backup.

21. email sending limitations:

If you are planning to use your webhosting account to send mass emails then stay aware that most of the webhost may have problem with that. Ask about mail sending limitations before signing up or later you may get your account suspended.

22. Multiple domain hosting:

If you are planning to host more than one website then you will need to buy a plan that allows the number of you want to add. In cPanel based hosting you can host websites on separate domain or subdomain, either is counted as one add-on domain.

23. Sub-domains:

You may want to use subdomains to host separate website or as a separate function of your website like redirecting or tracking urls. Look for subdomain support and addon domains allowed while purchasing web hosting plan.

24. Payment term/ schedule:

Most host offer multiple payment terms and schedules. You can choose from monthly, quaterly, half yearly, annual or even sometime multiple year plans. Web hosts offer nice discounts on annual or longer plans but I suggest you stick to monthly plan at first. That is because you may want to cancel your hosting if its not upto your requirements. You can always upgrade to higher plans later, no host is going to say no to that.

25. Cancellation/refund policy:

Before ordering a hosting plan confirm about webhost's cancellation and refund policy, especially if you are ordering multiple month or yearly plan. Some webhost offer refund if you cancel within a fix duration like 30 days or so and other offer to refund the amount that is left in your account while there are few those do not give any refund once you have paid.

26. Transfer policy:

If you are moving to a host or taking your website away from a webhost you will need help from web host support. Ask for their policy on that. Some webhost move your websites for free and others are notorious to charge additional to move your data.

27. Check for web host's review:

Before signing up it is highly recommended you check for web host's review on other websites and forums but always take these reviews with a pinch of salt. Many of those glowing reviews may be planted by the web host itself or affiliates of those hosts. In same way negative reviews may be posted by competing web hosts. If you want to save all this hassle of looking for honest reviews, you can sign up for web hosts who have made their reputation over years of serving satisfied customers. I suggest hostgator and bluehost for cheaper cPanel plans and mediatemple for people who want stable and fast web hosting.

28. Check web host's support forum and knowledge base:

Many web host also run support forums where users can find answers to commonly raised queries and problems. You will also find reviews of these web hosts in these forums that can hugely help in making buying decisions.
Busy forums also indicate the web host is used by many web masters. If support staff is active in forums you can figure that web host is serious about their support activities.

29. Check whois details of host:

Check for the whois data of web host's domain at sites like Stay away from web hosts who have their domain registered within 1 year. Older domain suggest the web host is in business for long period and can be trusted but that is not always true.

30. Price of hosting:

For many new web masters price is main point of selecting a web host but I strongly recommend you never to go make a decision based on price. Cheap web host have to stuff their servers with more websites to make it profitable and that will in return adversely affect the stability of web server. You surely do not want a web host that charges less but their web server is down more than its working.

My recommendation for web hosting:

  • cPanel based Shared hosting:  Hostgator and bluehost are cheaper than mediatemple but they have cpanel hosting and they have proved themselves over many years and literally host millions of websites.
  • Grid Server: Mediatemple charges $20 USD per month and onward but their quality servers are super fast, stable and trusted by lots of website owners. When it comes to reliability in shared hosting mediatemple is best.
  • VPS hosting: Servint offer cpanel based VPS that are fully managed. I am very impressed by their support. I never have to wait for more that 5 minutes to get a reply from support staff.
  • For cheaper unmanaged VPS you can go for digitalocean cloud based VPS server where you can get VPS for as low as $5 USD per month. Their VPS are SSD based that are way faster compared to old HDD based VPS.
  • Dedicated servers: I have never used any dedicated hosting till now so cant say much but as a Servint customer and based on their support quality I would suggest their dedicated servers.

July 04, 2013

How to choose domain name

Domain name is the first and arguably the most important steps in making a website. Among all the websites I have created and marketed I have noticed that the websites with better domains needed lesser work to get visitors than the other sites.
In my previous post I discussed about the steps in creating a website. If you haven’t read it yet please go ahead and read it and come back to finish this post. If you don’t want to read the detailed post then at least see this image below.
steps to crate a website
In this post we are going to discuss the first step that is domain selection.
There are lots of concepts regarding domain selection for a website but remember these are not rules. You can see then as guidelines which can be followed or not. All depends on what you think.
Here are the things you should keep in mind while choosing a domain for your site.
1. Type of site:
Different type of sites needs different types of domain names.
Personal blogs:  If you want to start a online journal or a personal blog you can choose your name as a domain fro your blog. eg Remember this goes only for personal blogs. If you want to build a blog to earn money you should choose a domain related to your niche. Personal domain names also make it difficult when someone become interested in buying your blog. You will not want to sell a blog with your name as domain.
Celebrity Website:  Celebrity or a known personality who is making a website to get people know more about himself should also get a domain containing their name in it. People will search for their name or they may simply type ““ in the browser. So getting a domain name with .com extension is best
 Business websites: Choosing a domain for business website is little tricky. You have to keep a lots of things in mind. If your business is known then it is little easier. You can choose the domain with which people recommend your name to other. People are going to search for that very name. But if you are new to business then then you will need a name that tell people what you do and also they can find you by searching you on Google or other search engines.
2. Choosing the domain extension:
Always prefer a .com domain. This can be considered as a rule. Whatever type of website you are building, whether a blog or a business website .com is always better. The main reason is people who have less knowledge about the internet technicalities, they still think all the websites end up with .com. Domains ending with .com are also easier to remember and also easier to share.
There are times when .com domains are not available and you have to choose some other extension then you can go for .net or .org. These extensions are little less known in comparison to .com but still people hear them frequently.
If you are choosing a domain name for your local business site then you can choose a domain with country specific domain extension like .us for an USA based site of for an United Kingdom based site. Most countries have their country specific domains. Sometimes search engines give preference to the sites with local extension.
3. Easy to remember:
Try to choose a domain that is easier to remember. Short domains are best. Domains that are too lengthy are difficult to remember but even difficult to recall and type. You don't want to loose your visitor just because they feel lazy while typing you domain or they make spelling mistakes while typing your domain name.
Please don’t let your craving for short domain make it difficult to understand what you do. Domains should be tell users what your website is about.
4. Domains should tell about your business:
If you are a known brand then your domain name should have your brand name in it. People will search for your brand and it will become easy for them to reach you. If you are new you should have words in your domain which tells user what your site is about. This serves many purpose. There are better chances people will remember you when they are in need that will give you more business. People will find it easier to recommend to other. It bring a feeling that you are expert in this field. These words also help your website rank well in search results.
5. Say no to hyphens or numbers:
Domains with words separated by  hyphen(-) are easier to read but they lead to too much problem when you want to tell others about your site verbally. You may loose a lot of visitors just because they were missing the hyphens or adding some extra hyphens while typing your domain name. example. can be spelled like by missing a hyphen or by adding an extra hyphen
As for numbers we all know how difficult it is to remember numbers. And also for every number there is a word in English. your domain may be but people may type in
6. Keep keywords in your domain name:
Think for few keywords that explains your website or business in advance before searching for domain name. For example a finance website can have keywords like finance, bank loan, mortgage, interest rate etc.
These keywords boosts search engine rankings as well as people know what you do by simply hearing or reading your domain name.
7. Domain uniqueness:
Your domain should not resemble any other well known domain name or company. Also do not choose misspelled words, plurals of hyphenated version of a known brand. People searching for you may get misguided to other website and you will loose a loose your valuable customers.
Google also show results for well known website believing that person who is searching has mistyped the word. You may have come across something like this while searching on Google.
choosing domain name
8. Stay away from copyrighted words:
Beware of this mistake. Always search for whether the words containing in your domain are not copyrighted. You may have to loose your domain after you have established your website and brand and that would be terrible. You can search at before registering a domain.
9. Register for longer period:
Most of the time people register domain for 1 year only but if you are serious about your business you should try to register your domain for as longer period as you can. Google gives better ranking to domains that are not going to expire for long time. The reason being domain spammers register domain for shorter periods and leave those domains after they have done with their spamming.
10. Choose a reputed domain registrar:
This is important but neglected step. We have heard stories where registrars have locked domains and demanded more renewal fees after the initial registration period ends.
Domain registrars also provide DNS hosting services.There may be times you also host your DNS at your registrar and bigger domain registrar have better monitoring and serving systems to keep your sited available all the time.
11. Use better tools to search for your domain name:
Domain search tools can make a difference in choosing your domain. Some tools provide with domain suggestion where you can get better domain names if the one you searched for is not available.
Some domain search tools also provides information about the search engine value of the domain and other useful information.
12. Know about the history of the domain:
Always look at the history of your domain name as there are chances that some spammer has registered that domain name earlier and got it banned or blacklisted at either search engines like Google, Bing etc. by spamming or at major email providers like Gmail, Yahoo or Hotmail by doing email spamming from this domain. In that case it will become your headache to get your domain whitelisted at these services.
13. Have a look at expiring domains:
There are lots of good domains that people buy to sell them later to needful at higher price. Many a times they don’t get a buyer and they leave the domain to expire. If you search for these domains at regular domain search engine you won’t see them there because these domains are not yet fully released for new registration. There are few days left for their release but you can still get them. You need to search them at proper places like’s expired domain search.
14. Premium domains:
There are many services where you can get already registered good domains for larger prices. These are called premium domain. You can choose these domains if they fit your need but they are costly. Always negotiate on price even if you can afford the original price. One of my friend needed a domain and the owner was asking for 3000$ for that domain. After a long negotiation my friend got that domain for 250$. See what I mean by when I say always negotiate.
If you know any more things that need to be mentioned in this domain selection guide please feel free to tell them in the comments. I will include them giving you and your website credit for the tip.

June 25, 2013

Steps to build a website

If you are new to this making website stuff you need to now the basic steps to fulfill your endeavor. Each of these steps needs posts of their own to cover them in full detail. Here I will give you some simple explanation about each site.
Without further delay let me tell you these steps.
steps to making website
In above image you can see the steps. It is not essential to follow these steps in this sequence but its better if you do.
Lets me explain these steps one by one.
1. Select Domain:
Choosing a appropriate name is must to every website and you should never take it lightly. Most of the online website and blog making services provides subdomains to host your websites on. Blogger provides, on your get and so on. I strongly suggest you stay way from subdomain hosting if you are even a little bit serious about your site. 
If you want to start a personal blog then you can choose as your domain but for a website aimed at promoting any business domain should relate to what your business is about. For example for a plumber named John located in New Jersey is a better name then
Few simple things that you should keep in mind when selecting domain:
  • Your domain should be short and simple
  • Try to get a .com domain but if your target people lives in some specific country you can always choose specific extension of that country. If both .com and your country specific domain are available always go for .com.
  • Try not to get a domain with hyphen(-). Its difficult to tell by mouth.
  • For business website get a domain which tells about your business. domain should contain words describing your business.
2. Get web hosting space:
If you are hosting your own website then you will need a good web hosting service like hostgator or bluehost. Web hosting space is the space you need to store on a server which will stay always on and deliver your website whenever someone visit your site. Always go for a quality and well renowned host or you may loose a lots of customer/visitor.
If you use online website building services like weebly or wix you will not have to worry about this step.
People who wants to host their blogs on blogger, or tumblr don’t need any web hosting. Their blogs are hosted on the respective service. If you want full control and want to install WordPress on your own service you will need a web hosting. Go for a host with cpanel and fantastico. With fantastico you can install WordPress with only few clicks.
Most important quality you need to look for in any web host is their tech support. If your website is down and your web hosting provider is out of your reach for long period you are totally doomed.
For better hosting with cpanel and fantastico I suggest using Hostgator or Bluehost web hosting. They are in business for years and host more than million websites each. I too use Hostgator to host my websites.
3.  Build your website:
This is the last and most difficult step. If you are building a blog you are in luck. All blogging services provide nice looking templates and themes to design your blog to your liking. Self hosted WordPress users have even more options as lots of free and paid themes are available for them to download and install on their blogs.
For business websites, you can use weebly or wix and you will have a lot less to worry about. There are many template option for various type of website and you can create pages with ease.
If you want to built a static HTML website you can download free or paid templates available at various websites. You will need basic understanding of HTML, CSS and JavaScript to accomplish the task.
If you want a dynamic website with contact forms and other such things it will need knowledge of more technologies. You can always hire a web developer to get your website done but that will cost a lot.
For more information read create website for free. In that post I have written about various services where you can create your website or blog for free.
These steps are simple but there is lot to think about when making choices. I will write about these steps in details later. If you want to keep track please subscribe to this blog by filling your email in the form located I sidebar.

How to create a website for free

I believe you know basic steps about creating a website. If you don't read this post titled Steps to build a website.
There is a serious misconception among beginners who want to create website that to make website one needs to learn HTML, CSS, JavaScript or advanced web programming languages like PHP, Python, Ruby, C#, Visual basic etc.
There were days when knowing these technologies was must. But now to make a basic (or sometimes advanced) website you do not need to know programming or scripting.
If you know about correct tools you can create some beautiful looking and fully functional websites without learning any of the above mentioned technologies.
There are many services out there where you can create your website and host them. Some of them and free and some are paid.

Before starting a website you should know the purpose of your website. Few people just want to share their daily activities or keep an online journal, for them creating a blog is enough. If you are want to build a website for your business a blog will not suffice and you will need a full blown website with webpages ranging from business introduction to online store where your customers can order your products (This is only required if you want to sell your products or services online).
Creating a blog is very simple and you can create your blog online in few minutes and that too for free. There are many online services where you can create your blog in next few minutes. Lets evaluate most popular options.
1. : makes blogging so easy that you don’t have to see any code ever(although you can). You can create blog at in few minutes and you are good to go without spending a single dime. This service is owned by Google. You blog is hosted at Google server so no need to find a quality hosting service.
2. Wordpress:
Wordpress in most popular platform used by most of the advanced bloggers. Wordpress comes in 2 flavors. You can go to and create blog just like and start blogging. You blog is hosted at and you don’t have to worry about buying hosting. Second option that most advanced blogger opt for is to download copy of blogging software from and install it on their purchased hosting space. This second option gives you more control as you have full access to the blog platform’s code and you can alter it according to your needs.
This is a new service compared to blogger or wordpress. It is recently acquired by yahoo. This is a interesting blogging service in respect that it is not only a blog hosting service it’s a community of people who blog and read each other’s blogs.
Weebly is not only a blogging platform, you can also create full fledged websites with various fancy bells and whistles. It has a basic free plan with some constraints and paid plans if you want more features. You can choose your plan according to your needs. For beginners free plan suffice.
There are numerous other services but I suggest you create your blog at one of these reputed and time tested service.
If you want to create a website with more function than that of a blog you can use one of below mentioned services.
1. :
I myself use this service to create websites whenever required as this service makes it so easy to build beautiful and professional looking websites. You simply have to choose templates click on buttons according to your needs and you are done. You can also add your custom domain(example: for free for which competing services like charges.
2. : is like weebly where you have plenty of design options and easy to use interface to build websites with all the functionalities you will ever need. Wix offers a free plan with lots of constrains and various paid plans. You can choose plan according to your need. One thing that always make me stay away from this service is that you have to pay for adding your own domain name. On free plan your site stay on subdomain like 
3. Google Sites:
Google Sites offers a free alternative where you can create your business or personal website for free. It also offers push button website builder but it has less functions as compared to Weebly or Wix. There is no paid plans here and everything is free. 
There are many more free and paid alternative to those  I have mentioned above. I am not mentioning them here because because of two reasons. First, above mentioned services are time tested and reliable and secondly, I have used them and found them as better fit for beginners who don’t want to spend money at start.
I will keep on adding more services if I find them suitable for beginners. If you know about some service please let me know in comments below.