So I was talking to a friend the other night, and she asked what I did. I replied, “I run a small marketing and consulting company. We help entrepreneurs brand themselves online using LOcal marketing, MObile marketing and SOcial media marketing techniques.”
Hold Up – I just came up with my elevator pitch.
She went on to share she was in the process of getting her LLC for a specialized day care service she plans on opening. As we were discussing what made her business model unique, I was searching for available domain names. We found the perfect domain in her niche. I offered tips on what registrar to use and how much it should cost. I adamantly advised she not pay for any of the extras the registrar would offer during the domain purchase transaction.
Extra’s such as:
-Matching .net, .us, .info etc. Typically the .com should do the trick for you – If you have money to burn call me.
-Offer to Build the Website – It would be a very generic site, and that’s my job anyway.
-Private Registration – There actually are some benefits to this…..but the necessity varies from person to person.
-Business Class Email – see below
-Web Hosting – see below
The reason I advised she not purchase the “extras” was because we offer web hosting services to our clients. Our entrepreneurial journey has taught us many lessons – one of them being: as an entrepreneur with a small budget and a heavy focus on the internet you need your own web page hosting account.
A web hosting service is a home for your web site on web servers, which are stored in a secure, climate controlled environment. These web servers are connected to the Internet so that other people on the Internet can view your web site. The web host is an online storage center that houses the information; images, videos, and other content that makes up your Web site.
Listed below are my top 5 reasons you need your own hosting account:
1. Cost Effectiveness – It’s easy for people to “Get Got” after they purchase a domain name. Once you get your domain name, you need somewhere to host it. As mentioned above, most companies offer numerous up sells of extra’s you are led to believe are necessary to go along with your domain name. Domain name registrars capitalize on their customers’ lack of technical knowledge.
A listed price of 12.00 for a domain name can easily turn into a 90.00 purchase, especially when you’re a novice and excited about your new venture.
It’s almost like taking a date to a 10.00 movie and still spending 60 bucks. Many of these extras can be achieved using your own hosting site. Hosting is typically offered for between 5-15 bucks per month depending on included features. We use a hosting service called HostGator. We can host unlimited websites on this one hosting account. At last count we have over 25 client and personal websites being hosted. Another advantage of purchasing your own hosting account is that quite often a domain name comes with it for free.
2. Free Sub Domains – This is absolutely one of the best reason’s you need a web hosting account. There will come a time that you may need an additional website that is related to your primary website. The novice would purchase an additional domain; but with a hosting account you can create sub-domains for free. Here are two examples when this feature came in handy for us:
Example 1.The website for our marketing company is www.lomosomarketing.com. A previous client was affiliated with a night club. We built a website for the club, it was actually one of our firsts. The owners decided to close the night club and not renew the domain name. One of the signature sites in our portfolio was about to be gone. We didn’t want to purchase a new domain either. The solution was to create a sub domain using our hosting account. www.nightclubsample.lomosomarketing.com.
Example 2. www.10sandbetter.com (some adult content) is a client website that features aspiring models. We needed a landing page (single page website) to collect email addresses for a 10sandbetter model call. No need to purchase an additional domain. It was as simple as creating the sub domain www.modelcall.10sandbetter.com
3. Personalized Email – With your own hosting account, you can create multiple email accounts for each of the domains that you host. Free email does not look professional. What looks more professional on a business card; Krobinson_blacktopacademy@gmail.com or firstname.lastname@example.org? Personalized emails are simple to set up with your own hosting account (at no additional charge).
Sidenote: I do encourage everyone get a gmail account that brands their business name. It’s great for your YouTube Chanel, and Google Hangout, just don’t use it as your primary email on your business card. And yes, Blacktopacademy.com is our newest client.
4. Profit – you can sell hosting. We have a few website clients that only require hosting and just very basic maintenance. We charge them 40.00 per year to host thier website with us. Another client had us set up a family reunion website and FB, they purchased their own hosting account. Any time a member of the family needs a website hosted, they use the reunion committee’s webserver. They can provide this as a free service and a benefit to dues paying family members or as a source of revenue generation for the reunion committee.
5. Control and Flexibility – Many companies bait and switch by offering “free” blogs or free websites. The URL is usually something like: www.thisisafreebloggingsystem.com/thisisthename_wheremydotcom_sholdbe. Usually you don’t have the control to advertise on these free sites. You don’t have complete control over the look and feel of these free websites and also you don’t own it so it can be shut down at any time.