There’s No Page Like Home

Understanding Website—Web Host—Domain—CMS

Dorothy_and_Chicken Getting your own website for the first time? The excitement of starting a business and getting a website can be swept away in a cyclone of unfamiliar terms. This guide will provide an understanding of the basic components of website creation: website, web host, domain and CMS (Content Management System).

toto For a fun visual version of this post, scroll down!

Website

One-room farmhouse or the Emerald City, your website is not just what houses your business, but a place where others come to visit and, hopefully, stay awhile. Each page of your website is like a room for your guests to explore. The difference between a website and your house is that a website always has the light on and someone’s always ready to communicate. It’s like a 24/7 employee! Invest in a great contractor to build your web home (web designer/developer, such as Aquilino Arts) so that it represents you well.

toto Just-for-fun examples: FeedTheHead.net and WeaveSilk.com.

Web host

Your munchkin landlord is happy to provide a spot for your house for free since you rid them of the Wicked Witch of the East, but most landlords require you pay a fee to rent the lot your website sits upon. All web hosts rent the space, but each web host is unique in their amenities and restrictions, so choose carefully.

toto Web hosts, AKA landlords, that we like: Bluehost, Site5.

Domain

Address, phone number, email—these are all important so people can find you. Whether you are a farmhouse in Caldwell, KS, or the Royal Palace of Oz, you have to have a domain name to get found.

toto Your domain could be your business name like secondgrowth.org or a pique-interest name like wordle.net.

CMS

Adding a room? Want a new coat of paint? Ready to move furniture in? Your contractor and interior decorator are your CMS (Content Management System), capable of adding a new page to web home, changing the way it looks, and allowing you to update content like text and photos.

toto WordPress is our preferred CMS to use, but there are many others, such as Joomla and Drupal.

NEXT STEPS

Build a website yourself? Hire a professional? Some guiding questions to ask before skipping down the yellow-brick road:

  • Do I have the time and inclination to learn a website-building app?
  • How much time can I afford away from my primary business?
  • What are my expectations for website capability (on-line store, ticketing system, other special functions)?
  • Am I happy with selecting from templates or do I need to stand out?

In the coming weeks, we’ll explore each of these components in more depth, providing technical insight and advice about choosing providers.

There's No Page Like Home: Understanding Website, Web Host, Domain and CMS. An Aquilino Arts infographic.

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