Hosting and a Domain

Are you ready to build your first site?

Let’s get started!

The first two steps are: 1) to get ‘hosting’ – a place to put your site on the web
and 2) to get a ‘domain’ name – the phrase you choose to identify your space – or domain -on the web


Go to Hostgator and sign up for their Hatchling Plan (approximately $6.00 a month). You save more on the monthly rate if you commit to longer term hosting, so chose a price and term you feel comfortable with.)

When you have paid you will receive a confirmation email with your two “nameserver” links
 it in. This is the way Hostgator knows exactly which bit of the web is now yours. Save this information safely where you can find it again!

Your domain name

Choose the domain name (site name) you want:

  • If you don’t quite know what you want your site to be about yet, consider choosing your name, maybe including a middle initial
  • If you are already famous, definitely use your own name!
  • If what you offer is based in a specific geographic location, consider a name that includes that location, such as:“GinnysPhiladelphiaTours”
  • If you specialize in a hobby, add your name to it, such as “NaomisBabyQuilts” or “WoodenTrainsByFred”
  • Be as creative as you like, but make the name easy to remember – or your customers might not hear or remember it correctly
  • Create a list of 2-3 possible options in case your first choice is already taken


Go to GoDaddy.

  • Use their domain search tool to check if the first domain name you’ve selected is available.
  • If it’s not, look at their suggestions for closely related options, or move through your choices. When you’re settled on a name, register it for 1-5 years, your choice!
  • I recommend getting ‘.com’ after the name. People tend to forget which three letters follow the dot, so ‘.com’ makes it easier for people to remember.
  • For now you don’t need any other variations of your domain name, .org, .tv, etc – unless you are feeling wealthy or famous!
  • Don’t be seduced by any offers on your way to the check out!
  • After you have completed the check out process, go to the link that says, “manage my domains”.
  • Check the box along side your domain, and look for the icon above that says “nameservers”. Click on it, and it will take you to another page to add your information from your saved email.
    Screen Shot 2016-06-12 at 11.18.32 AM


  • Get that email and copy and paste each nameserver into a separate line.

So now you’ve completed two huge steps – you have hosting and a domain name!

You are officially online!

Right now if you go online to your domain name there is probably nothing to see but some ads or placeholder text, but it is all yours!