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How to Create /build a Professional Website for Free

How to create a website? or How to build a website? is the first question when I started doing online business. Building a website is quite subliminal and difficult for who does not study or work in Information Technology field. What does a website include? What is web hosting? What is a domain name?. In this article, you will have all these basic knowledge; and you can easily start to build your own website(s) for free (or almost free).
How to Create /build a Professional Website for Free

What are components of a Website?

All websites have the same structure, it includes 3 main components:
- Domain name
- Web hosting (hosting)
Web data (source code, images, text, database...)
If we compare a website with a house, then web hosting is the ground/ platform, domain name is the address and web data includes all things we use to build up that house (brick, cement...). Easy to imagine, right? So, to build your own website, you must have all three components.

1. Domain Name

Domain Name is like your home address, people can visit your website by inputting your domain name on address bar in a web browser. Domain name is the most important factor in brand expression. A good domain name is short enough (easy to remember) and rich information (provide information about your website, your business ideas or your style). For example, the domain name of our website is easytipz.com, we share all useful tips to make the world technology easier! LOL
What are components of a Website?
There are many different kinds of domains, such as international domains (.COM, .NET, .ORG, .EDU, .GOV...), the national domain name (.US, .CA, .CN, .UK...)... The most popular domain name type is .COM (it is common, easy to remember and easy to SEO top Google), you may all know: facebook.com, google.com, yahoo.com or microsoft.com

2. Web Hosting

Web hosting is where you store your website on the internet (exactly, web hosting stores all website's data, includes: source code, database, text, photo...). Web hosting actually are some physical or virtual servers, we called such servers are "web server".
Web Hosting

There are also many types of hosting, both free and paid for you to choose: Shared hosting (cheapest, even free but slow and not secure); VPS hosting (more secure, difficult to manage and still slow for big websites); dedicated server (best choice! but quite expensive).

3. Web Data

Your web data includes source code, database and contents (such as image, text...).
The source code of a website determines how the website work? Source code is complex computer programs. To make it easier, they build Content Management System (CMS). It is an interface so that webmasters can manage the website easily and visually. For example, Wordpress is one of the best free CMS.
CMS Content Management System

How to Create /build a Professional Website for Free?

Now you all know what a website includes, so let's start to build your own website(s).

How to create your own website(s) for free

To create a website for free, you should find somewhere provides all 3 components of a website for total free:
- Use their own CMS (that include both source code and web data)
- Your domain name with be their sub-domain: For example, their domain name is wordpress.com then your domain name (the sub-domain) will be yourname.wordpress.com. The most popular free CMS that you can start to create free websites are:
  1. Wordpress.com (Powered by Wordpress)
  2. Blogger.com (Powered by Google)
  3. Wix.com
  4. Webs.com
  5. Yola.com
Follow these easy steps to start to create a free website (I will use blogger.com as an example, you can do similarly with other CMS)
1. Open an account at blogger.com: 
Go to: https://www.blogger.com to create an account here. You can also login with your current Google account (your gmail), because blogger.com is powered by Google. :) and I believe that we all have at least one account at Google.
2. Create a new website/ blog at blogger.com:
Now you can login Blogger.com and create your own website(s). You can create many websites/ blogs with a single Gmail account.
Create a new website/ blog at blogger.com:
After creating a website at blogger.com, you should publish some page to introduce your website, for example: About Us, Privacy Policy, TOS, Contact Us...
And then you can start to post some first articles (post)!

How to build your Professional Websites

With above step, you now have your own website(s) / blog(s). But it is not really professional. Because you are using a sub-domain (http://yournewblogabc.blogspot.com) and along with a free, basic interface template (theme). In this part, I will try to help you to build professional websites. Follow below guides:
1. Use free CMS (source code and web data) but buy your own domain instead of using free sub-domains:
You should buy your own domain name, because it is quite cheap ($0.99 for the first year and about $9 for each next year).
I suggest buying domain name at below registrars:
- Godaddy: No.1 Domain Registrar in the world ($0.99 for the first year and about $11 for each next year).
- Namecheap: Top best Domain Registrar in the world (about $4 for the first year and about $9 for each next year).
After buying a new domain, you have to do some configuration at your CMS setting (below image is about Blogger.com):
How to build your Professional Websites

2. Use premium Templates/ Themes:

Instead of using the default templates/ themes provided by the CMS (blogger.com or wordpress.com), you should use (find or buy) other premium templates/ themes. Many people share it for free. If you use CMS Wordpress, you can find many Wordpress premium themes here.

3. Use your own web hosting and/ or with your own CMS (source code):

With blogger.com and wordpress.com, you don't care about web hosting because it is free and included with the CMS. But the problems here, you cannot control the source code 100%. It means you cannot set, change or config all components of the websites as your ideas. To fix this disadvantage, you have to use your own web hosting with your own CMS (or open source CMS)
You can buy shared hosting, VPS hosting or dedicated server. If you are new, you should buy a shared hosting to start (you will upgrade to VPS hosting or dedicated server later, when you have more experiences). Here are some best web hosting providers:
- Godaddy Hosting: Recommend provider for Shared hosting
- Stablehost: idea for shared hosting
- Vultr: Recommend provider for VPS hosting
You also can find some free hosting providers, but I suggest not to use free hosting. You should use free CMS (Blogger.com or Wordpress.com) until you can spend about $3/month to buy a premium web hosting package from above providers.
When you have your own web hosting, domain name, let's start building your own website with below steps:
1. Point your domain name to the IP of your web hosting (setting on the Domain Control Panel of your registrar)
2. Choose a CMS then install on web hosting (setting on the Hosting Control Panel). For example, I use Wordpress CMS (see more at wordpress.org). Most hosting control panel provide "1-click to install" function. With the function, you can install your Wordpress website within 1 click (include: set your hosting configuration, create a database for your website and some further configurations). If your hosting provider does not support the function, you have to config yourself. It will take some time!
3. Start to manage your website: Post introduction pages, and post some articles...
Leave a comment if your need any help.

Cheer!

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