Two purchases are vital to your web design and maintenance process and must be managed before the website building process can begin.
Domain Registration: This is the securing of your URL (Uniform Resource Identifier – you do not have to remember that), which is also called a “domain name.” This will be the address that is entered into a browser’s address bar to get to your website. It typically begins with “www” and ends with “.net” or “.com.” Back in the old days when the internet was young, “.com” addresses were for commercial sites and “.net” addresses were for personal web pages. Another frequently used suffix is “.org,” which was used for organizations. There are so many millions of websites in existence that you may have to try a few different names or variations to find a domain name that is available.
There are many “registrars” (companies that will register your domain name for you for a fee) and while there are “high end” and “low end” registrars, the result is the same. You are free to register your own domain name or have Earthmom Designs do it for you. Our price for registering a domain name (if it is available) is $20. This includes the fee for registration and the time it takes us to do it and set up your name servers (the function that tells the domain where to find your site) with the registrar. Domain registration is separate and not factored into the actual web design process.
If you choose to register your own domain, you will need to set up name servers once your web hosting company has been chosen.
Web Hosting: The second consideration is the choice of a web host. A web host is a company that has a “server.” A server is like a gigantic hard drive (the piece of equipment in your computer that stores the information you save) and its function is to store all of the material (photos, text, page set up, etc) that you save to your website. This is “remote,” meaning not on your computer, so if your computer crashes, your website remains unaffected and your files are not lost. So stick with me here: The reader types your DOMAIN name in the address bar of their computer browser. The NAME SERVERS at the REGISTRAR tell the browser where the to look for your website material which is stored on the SERVER at your WEB HOST COMPANY.
There are many, many different web hosting companies available with a myriad of prices and services offered. When you set up an account with a web hosting company, they will provide you with the DNS (name servers) of your site. You will also establish a user name and password to access your site (this is very important and without it, your site cannot be created or modified).
For information about our web hosting costs, see the link to the right under Website Services.
When you purchase your web hosting services through Earthmom Designs, you will be provided with a user name and password to access your site for modification and upkeep and your name server information will be provided to you to pass on to your registrar.
Once the domain registration and web hosting have been set up, you are ready for your site to be built!