In our last post I introduced you to hostgator for those looking to start up their first website (or move a site). If you are starting a blog or website, WordPress is the best and easiest way to go. You can use WordPress.com for free but that comes with some limitations. Such as your web address containing .wordpress.com in there, very unprofessional. It also limits you in customization of your site as well. I will always try to encourage you to go with self hosted WordPress instead, and with the ease of set up with Hostgator and the low cost why would you do anything else.
Wanted to speak for a moment on domain names. This is your website address which visitors type in their browser to find you. Before you can set up your website you need to register your domain name somewhere. You can do this through hostgator if you wish but at $15 a year their are cheaper options such as namecheap.com, godady.com or hell I can even register it for you
When you register your domain name with whoever you choose you will need one bit of info from your hostgator account. Name server addresses. This is how the interwebs will find your site at hostgator’s servers. When you log into your c-panel account at hostgator scroll way down to the bottom and on the left side there will be an account information box and you will see a box labeled ‘name servers’ these are what you will put in your domain’s registration when it asks for name servers. Every registar is different so I cant really tell you where to input it for your (but if you email me I might be able to help out) If you forgot to do this you can change it any time.
Lets Set Up Your Website
I told you in the last post that you can have your WordPress site up and ready to go on hostgator in less than 5 mins and this is where we are going to start that. I wanted to exclude the Domain as part of the process above because when you first register your domain it can take up to 24 hours for it to take effect and be ready to go. It has happened in less than an hour before for me but your millage may vary. This process is also with the baby plan where you can do ‘unlimited’ domains.
So now to set up your site log into your c-panel and scroll down watching the right side till you find the area label ‘domains’ just like pictured below.
Yep you most likely have figured out the next part, click ‘addon domain’. The next screen may look daunting but relax you only have to fill in 3 of the boxes (and two of them are the same). First box enter your domain name, no www or http just the name with the extension (.com .net .org) then hit enter. It fills in the next to boxes for you so just leave what they put in. Skip to password and enter a password for the site and the confirm it in the next box.
Click add domain and thats it your webspace for the new domain is done and if you go there in your browser you will see some hostgator holding page. If you wanted to you could just start ftp’ing files to you space now, but we wanted a wordpress site.
Installing WordPress to your Hostgator Site
That took what all of 1 min? If you are still on the page after adding your domain then click the little home button upper left and you will be back at your main control panel. Scroll on down till you see the section ‘software/services’ and find the funny little icon ‘Fantastico De Lux’ go ahead click it, wont hurt.
You will see a new screen with a butt load of software scripts that you can install to your site, like Christmas huh. We are only concerned with one though so go ahead and find the WordPress one, near the top under blogs yep go ahead and click it. The right hand panel changed now right? Find the link ‘New Installation’ and click it.
First section is location and you have two questions. First is the domain, if you have more than one on this account choose the correct one in the drop down. Next is the directory, you can use this to create and install in a different directory other than your root. I don it on occasions to develop a site then move it to the root later (this can be a daunting task though) for most just go ahead and leave it blank and Word press will be installed in the root directory.
Next section you’ll enter an admin username and password. This is what you use to log in to the admin area to do all your do all your customizing with plugins and themes as well as posting pages and posts!
Next give your self a nickname, what shows as author of your posts.
Last fill in your email (for notifications) your site’s name and a description (can be changed later).
Okay moment of truth, click install. Ok tricked you one more screen telling you what you entered, everything good? Ok click finish installation.
Thats it your WordPress site is up and ready to use, and I bet it would actually take you only 3 mins. Yes you now need to log in and install your plugins, a theme you like and set up your pages and start posting but you saved so much time with Hostgators one click (almost) WordPress set up. I have seen other hosts have this as well but they have been slow to keep the current version available. If you were to do this the old fashion way here what you would have to look forward to.
- Set up your domain (ok that’s still easy)
- Download WordPress zip file from WordPress.org
- Unzip files then FTP it to your webspace
- While that is happening you then need to set up a database on your server and a user name/password for it (write those down)
- When the files are done uploading then run the install script
If all your files load up correctly the first time this process can take 30 mins or more. So use the one click option whenever you can!
If you are ready to sign up you can click or enter http://mymultiplestreams.com/hostgator into your browser and sign up. Yes this is an affiliate link and I thnak you in advance if you use it to sign up for hostgator. If you need a hand or have any question let me know and Id be happy to help.
Already have a wordpress site or two and would like to move your sites to hostgator? Well stay tuned for the next post where I will go over how to do this (not as bad as you think).