ENTREPRENEURSHIP / JUL. 29, 2014
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How to Use GoDaddy to Set Up a Company Website

GoDaddy is the godfather of one-stop website shopping. Everything you need, all under one virtual roof and in one convenient location. As with anything, you could shop around, picking up various components at various vendors, piecing it all together later one. You might save some money, but you’ll definitely spend more time and energy.

GoDaddy, on the other hand, has everything you need to setup a company website, and with over twelve million customers, and 57 million domain names under management, they clearly know what they’re doing. Start from zero, and quickly have everything in your cart. From start to finish, they’ll have you accepting online visitors before you can say “It’s go time”.

Here’s what you need: a domain name, a hosting plan, a website builder, and possibly a few other tools (depending on your specific needs). Bundling everything together with GoDaddy will save you time and money. A quick note about prices - GoDaddy has frequent sales on domain registration and hosting plans, so prices may differ from those listed here.  

Domain Names

A domain name is step one. It’s your calling card - your address - online. With GoDaddy, you can quickly conduct a domain name search and see if your desired address is available. Their search tool is very easy - enter your preferred name (usually your name or that of your company) and hit search. GoDaddy will list the available choices. Scroll down and select the extension (.com, .ca, .org, etc.) that you want. While .com should probably be your first choice, there are dozens or extensions nowadays. Domain registration does carry a cost (anywhere from $2.99/year for .coms at the moment, to hundreds or thousands of dollars for hot and in-demand names), although the fee is typically waived for at least the first year if you purchase a hosting plan.

Hosting Plan

Your website needs space on the internet. A place to call home. Your domain name is the address, but hosting is the building itself. Your files and images are stored on GoDaddy servers.  

GoDaddy offers three tiers of basic hosting: economy (single website, 100GB storage, as low as $3.49/month), deluxe (unlimited websites, unlimited storage, as low as $4.49/month), and ultimate (all the benefits of deluxe, plus premium DNS and 1-year SSL certificate, as low as $7.49/month). Each comes with a free .com, .org, .net, or .co domain name.

There are also Wordpress hosting plans (basic, business, and pro) if you’re looking only to have a simple blog.

Make your selection, and check your domain name availability.

Website Builder

You have a name (the address). You have hosting (the building). And now you need a design (the interior decoration). Often called a theme, it is how your website will look. The colours, the number of columns, the various pages (home, about, contact, blog, catalogue, and so on).

GoDaddy can provide a subscription website builder. As with everything they offer, there are several tiers to consider: personal ($1.00/month, 50 personal and customizable themes), business ($5.99/month, 300 business and customizable themes), and business plus ($10.99/month, 300 business and customizable themes, plus several additional features). Make your selection, choose your theme, and start customizing...drag and drop features, add popular widgets and apps, change the colour scheme. Make it your site, matching your company brand. Add your company logo.

That’s it. You’ve successfully built your online company home (address, building, and decoration). You might be done. But you might need a few additional tools…

Optional Upgrades and Tools

  1. SSL Certificates - keep your customer information and payment details private and secure. Starting at $69.99/year.
  2. DNS Hosting - keeps your website safe and always online. Starting at $2.49/month.
  3. Sitelock Malware Scanner - protect your site from hackers and viruses. Starting at $17.88/year.
  4. Quick Shopping Cart - if you plan on selling a product or service on your website, you’ll need a shopping cart. This allows for customers to select and pay for something right online. Plans start at $4.99/month.
  5. Microsoft Office 365 from GoDaddy - get the features and functionality of Microsoft email and Word, Excel, and PowerPoint right on your website. Starting at $3.99/month.

None of these are necessary, but depending on your particular plans, they might be a worthwhile investment.

There are other providers out there that offer the same products and services as GoDaddy, but few have the experience and numbers that they do. They are the perfect choice for your first site, as everything is bundled, simple, and intuitive. GoDaddy even offers 24/7 customer support if you need some help at any step of the way. Select a name (your company name is best), choose a hosting plan, and pick a theme. Done.

 

Image source: GoDaddy

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