The past year I’ve done a lot of experimentation with WordPress and making sites and it’s pretty fun and cheaper than I thought. The beauty of blogging or building a website is once you understand the basics and have hosting space, setting up a new blog is as easy as securing a domain name (typically for around $10 or less) and pointing it to your hosting space.
I was talking with a tech-savvy friend when I had a bit of an epiphany of how the cost of creating your own website scales down as you build more sites. There’s sort of two main components to the cost of having a website. Hosting and Domain Name registration. Here’s how they apply and how to get the most for your money.
So the first cost component is for hosting space. Your site needs to live somewhere and the place it’s going to live is a server. So your first step is to get hosting space with a web hosting provider. There’s a variety of different options out there, but generally speaking, you’re going to pay somewhere in the neighborhood of $20 to $120 for a year of hosting depending on the options you choose. This hosting space is yours to do whatever you want with. And the best option is space that will allow you to create unlimited websites. That’s right. Most hosting options will allow you to create as many websites as you want as long as you don’t go over certain size limitation but it’s more common than you would think for an individual to have 50 websites living on one hosting account.
Domain Name Registration
The second cost associated with having a website is domain name registration. It’s helpful to think of this entirely separately from hosting. This is the purchasing and registration of the name of your site. For example, this site’s name is gocatchlife.com. In order for me, the owner to keep this name, I”ll pay roughly around $10 a year or so to the name registrar of my choice to keep the rights to this domain. Namecheap comes highly recommended and has domains for under $9.
So you can sort of think of hosting space as a fixed cost that remains the same for a year. Typically most hosts give you one domain free. And every other domain you add is an additional variable cost for site registration. As you add sites, your hosting cost does not increase. So this means your cost per site scales down as you add more sites. Here’s what I mean:
|Sites||Hosting Cost||Name Registration||Total Cost||Cost per Site|
build a second site and while your total cost is around $80, your cost per site jumps down to $40 per site.
So the total cost of just one site is around $70 for a year. But build a second site and while your total cost is around $80, your cost per site jumps down to $40 per site. As you build just a few sites, your cost per site continues to scale down and approaches around $10 per site for a year. These are rough averages. You can actually get domain name registration for as cheap as $8.00 at Namecheap but I’m being conservative and saying $10.
If you’re interested in starting a website, here are a few affordable hosts that are among the best.
My sites are currently hosted on Siteground and I’m quite happy with it. You can get virtually unlimited sites for around $70 a year and their customer service is good and their layout is clean and straightforward. Also for WordPress, they are fast. They use SSD’s which is a big plus for speed.
You can “spin up droplets” in Digital Ocean to create scalable hosting solutions for a very low price. This is kind of advanced level hosting but something I’m interested in. More on this later. Sign up with a free $10 credit here.
Disclaimer: I have an affiliate relationship with Namecheap, Siteground, and Digital Ocean. I earn a commission on any sales generated from signups. I wouldn’t promote them if I didn’t use them and believe in them.
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