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  1. #1

    Need host for wordpress business site - what is important?

    Hi guys

    Hope someone can help me. This is my first post here, I know little about websites, hosting etc. so please bear with me!

    I have created an e-book and now I need to create a website to promote it. I just need a simple website (I think I will use wordpress for that) with some text, a few pictures/video clips and a “buy button” that links to e-junkie.

    I have decided to buy the domain at Name or Namecheap because they seem to be recommended... Now I am looking for a host - been searching for a week (I guess NOTHING is simple in this life...) I must admit I am even more confused now. I am thinking about choosing Host Gator for hosting (is it a good choice?)

    My questions are:

    1. As far as I can see I need to choose Linux web hosting for my wordpress site and not Windows web hosting – right?
    2. What is important for hosting my simple wordpress website? I must admit that all the features and specifications specified on Host Gators site only makes me more confuse.. “Ruby On Rails”.. Chilisoft ASP.. etc. what the hell is all that for? Do I need to know it all before I can manage a web site?? I guess my question is - what do I need to learn?
    3. Isn’t a shared server good enough for me? (instead of a dedicated server). Could a “Host Gator Business Linux Web Hosting Package” be the right choice for me?
    4. Would it be better to use Host Gators website builder instead of using wordpress and Host Gators shopping carts features instead of e-junkie? Anyone use those options? What is important to me is security, SEO, ease of use..


    I know my questions are all over the place...

    Any help is much appreciated - Thanks!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2006
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    San Francisco
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    Welcome to WHT!

    1. Linux web hosting is generally preferred around these parts if you don't have anything that specifically requires Windows (which you don't).

    2. Since all you need to run is a WordPress site, you don't need to know much. Most hosting companies offer 1-click installs of WordPress so you can get setup right away without having to figure out how everything works.

    3. Shared hosting is absolutely fine. I don't have any experience with HostGator, but they have a good reputation here. Do a search on the forums here for reviews about them.

  3. #3
    Join Date
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    You seem to be on the right tracks so far.

    HostGator is certainly an alright host, they seem to do good and they try and rectify any problems which come up.

    For Wordpress, you will need to use Linux hosting. Most applications are designed to run on PHP/Perl; something which does not generally go for with Windows.

    As you said, it is just a simple Wordpress site. You don't need any fancy hosting, just some normal shared hosting will do you fine. Wordpress doesn't take much resources at all, in terms of diskspace / bandwidth; it won't interfere in terms of cpu/ram restrictions too. Wordpress is very easy to use, you don't really need to learn anything to use / manage it. Ruby on Rails is used in some programs, it's included in most hosts which you will fine, Wordpress doesn't need it. ASP is a language similar to php/perl but is generally for Windows.

    Personally, I think sites which are off generic site builders look tacky, other software can do you fine. Since you are wanting to run something for a business, you might want to look into getting an SSL Cert if you are doing anything which handles peoples personal details or financial details *on site*.

    ---

    I wish you good luck in finding a host, check out the shared offering section along with finding information about that specific company - but Hostgator have a good reputation at any rate.

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  4. #4
    Thanks! I already like this forum...

    Okay, so that means that shared hosting is fine and wordpress should do.

    I want my site to be secure (from hackers) and I want it optimized for search engines - can I just ignore all the different tools and options offered in cPanel or would that compromise the security or make my site less attractive for search engines? It would be great if someone could point out some of the more important options in Host Gator’s Control Panel (as far as I can see some of the options are the same no matter what host I choose) – I mean, the things that I should focus on right from the start, before I make my site public.

    I don't think I need an SSL Cert because E-junkie will handle the payment but I could be wrong...

    Is hacking a big problem or does the host protect me enough from that?

    Thanks again.

  5. #5
    Join Date
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    I guess my question is - what do I need to learn?
    Backing up your files and databases should be top priority. Restoring them would not be a bad lesson to learn while in the testing phase, just so you become familiar with it all. You could do a full backup of your account, or you could try the more complicated route (if one can really call it that) of using phpmyadmin for the database dumps (backups).

    My own experience with Hostgator you should be fine there. My -- admittedly still limited -- experience with some of their main competitors (Godaddy, Netfirms, Fatcow (part of the Endurance International group), Hostmonster) suggests that HG's performance and uptime combination is very good indeed.

    I don't think I need an SSL Cert because E-junkie will handle the payment but I could be wrong...
    That would be correct, if you don't handle payment yourself.

    Is hacking a big problem or does the host protect me enough from that?
    Typically yes, the host does protect you, but you should keep your applications (e.g. Wordpress) up to date. Upgrade when new versions are released, as they often take care of vulnerabilities.
    Last edited by ldcdc; 07-20-2009 at 08:46 PM.

  6. #6
    Wow, that was fast! Thanks.
    I have wordpress installed on my computer and I have tried building a site and I also tried backing up files... themes and database from wordpress... must admit I had a hard time figuring out what files were important because it all was very new to me. I have little clue about what files I should upload to my host but I am probably not allowed to ask about such things in this forum – I wish there was a beginner guide that would explain it all... It takes such a long time to figure it all out.

  7. #7
    Join Date
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lipoic View Post
    Wow, that was fast! Thanks.
    I have wordpress installed on my computer and I have tried building a site and I also tried backing up files... themes and database from wordpress... must admit I had a hard time figuring out what files were important because it all was very new to me. I have little clue about what files I should upload to my host but I am probably not allowed to ask about such things in this forum – I wish there was a beginner guide that would explain it all... It takes such a long time to figure it all out.
    upload any and all files that came with the original wordpress zip file. along with any modifications that you made. missing one file could mess up a lot of it. Just read the documentation on wordpress.org for help with wordpress install

    you could also look for a host with fantastico or installatron - they allow wordpress to be installed automatically to the hosting account - very easy and it's easy to update too when the time comes

  8. #8
    A handful things to remember when hosting Wordpress websites...

    http://wordpress.org/extend/plugins/...cache/....make use of super-cache to make your website preform better as well as allow for more amount of users on your website before your provider asks you to upgrade...


    You need a provider with PHP and MySQL.....

    Make backups of your own data! Do not trust your hosting provider to do this for you!

    Do your research, don't just jump for the cheapest provider.

    You get what you pay for.

    Avoid Unlimited Space/Bandwidth, its not possible.

    Best of luck.

  9. #9
    Hi
    I have got a WP site, and it took me a while to find the correct theme, I would strongly suggest taking some time to ask around and have a look for a theme and even an engine to run your WP site. A good engine may cost quite a bit and often over 50 pounds.
    Good luck

  10. #10
    Join Date
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    I just wanted to mention that if you're looking for a Wordpress host then just find a host that offer Fantastico or Installatron. Each are pieces of software that allow one-click installation of Wordpress as well as upgrades.

    There are tons of shared hosts available that would suit your needs. I'd recommend finding a low-cost host and just going from there. Test the waters and learn. Definitely Linux is your best bet.
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  11. #11
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
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    Hi,

    I'm a bit, what's the word?, flabbergasted at what is being thrown around here. How do you get these complicated ideas?

    A shared host is entirely sufficient. Take a good one, instead of a cheap one (good ones mean around 5-10 USD per month and usually provide quite enough ressources for what you plan to do), choose a blogging software which keeps well abreast security challenges, possibly has a one-click auto-update function in the admin interface, choose a pleasing theme, personalize it a bit and you're set to go.

    Unless your e-book is of adult content (which could mean quite different bandwidth requirements) or is attacking someone (which could mean trouble for your site and the host), there's no reason to assume that anyone is so interested in the site as to try to hack it or to demand enormous ressources.

    Indeed, I have suggested the WP-blog Wordpress supplies upon registration for free to authors for such purposes and it works well for them, they simply point their domain at it and have no trouble with maintainance.

    @Aus-ar: engine???

  12. #12
    Hi

    Sorry, I may have misunderstood, a piece of software I bought. I bought software that helped me to create a review site, the software was called reviewEngine , I think I may have misunderstood that it was the name of the product and not what the actual "item" is. Sorry, if I've confused anyone.

  13. #13
    As wordpress requires Linux-based serve, which most host can offer. In fact most of web application requires Linux, and the general consensus is that servers most stable and better suited to hosting websites. So make sure you can get a Linux-based server.
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  14. #14
    Shared hosting is fine for a web site that does not take a lot of the server resources. Unfortunately most shared web hosting companies never explain what that and try to sell offering "unlimited". As you know WordPress is great and easy to use web publishing platform but if any WordPress based website receives thousands of daily visitors and uses plugins which requires a lot of resources, shared hosting doesn't work. So it really depends of your project.
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  15. #15
    All comments are appreciated – thanks!

    Host Gator got Fantastico so that is great - I think I will choose the "Business" package instead of "Hatchling" or "Baby", not sure if I need to though. "Business" is more than twice as expensive as "Hatchling" but I still think it is a reasonable price ($12.95) and I get a dedicated IP. So what if I pay a little more... I can only hope that I will get a good service when I pay a little more (a bit naive perhaps?).

    So you can have a shared host with a dedicated IP but that is not the same as a dedicated host - correct? I read somewhere that if you share an IP (shared host) with someone who gets banned from Google (because of illegal stuff etc.) then it will affect you too because you share the IP... bad page ranking etc. Will I avoid that if I get a dedicated IP or is it something completely different?

    I am concerned of hacking, not because my e-book will offend anyone but because I will have a "pay button". I imagine that it would be quite easy to steel a costumers credit card details if someone could change the code in that link, so that people are being redirected to a fake site instead of the e-junkie/paypal site - I guess it is my responsibility to make sure that such things won't happen and that is why I ask about security. I just need to know if my host will protect me enough through default settings (I will keep my wordpress files up to date) or if I have to do something special in the cPanel or add anything else?

  16. #16
    Join Date
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    I can only hope that I will get a good service when I pay a little more (a bit naive perhaps?).
    For better or for worse, the support will be the same. What you get are some features that the other packages don't have.

    I read somewhere that if you share an IP (shared host) with someone who gets banned from Google (because of illegal stuff etc.) then it will affect you too because you share the IP... bad page ranking etc.
    There are a lot of SEO myths going around. I think this one pretty much qualifies for the term. It would have to be something very serious for Google to use IP ban as a "solution" -- which it really isn't because the SEO spammer can get another IP/chhange hosts just as easily as anyone else.

  17. #17
    Join Date
    May 2007
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    Chester, UK
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lipoic View Post
    Host Gator got Fantastico so that is great - I think I will choose the "Business" package instead of "Hatchling" or "Baby", not sure if I need to though. "Business" is more than twice as expensive as "Hatchling" but I still think it is a reasonable price ($12.95) and I get a dedicated IP. So what if I pay a little more... I can only hope that I will get a good service when I pay a little more (a bit naive perhaps?).

    So you can have a shared host with a dedicated IP but that is not the same as a dedicated host - correct? I read somewhere that if you share an IP (shared host) with someone who gets banned from Google (because of illegal stuff etc.) then it will affect you too because you share the IP... bad page ranking etc. Will I avoid that if I get a dedicated IP or is it something completely different?

    The only thing a dedicated IP will do is place your sites on a different IP to the default, you will still be on the same server as others though, still get the same level of service. Google 99% of the time take negative action against the domain of a site rather than the IP.

    The only difference I see between the first and third plan, is that the third has unlimited domains / dedicated ip / ssl certificate. You don't need a SSL certificate though, so that might be wasted, along with the IP. You'd still get the same level of service and quality of service from the Hatchling plans compared to the Business plan. If you are concerned about the amount of domains you can host, many other hosts will offer more addon domains for the price of the hatchling plan.

    I am concerned of hacking, not because my e-book will offend anyone but because I will have a "pay button". I imagine that it would be quite easy to steel a costumers credit card details if someone could change the code in that link, so that people are being redirected to a fake site instead of the e-junkie/paypal site - I guess it is my responsibility to make sure that such things won't happen and that is why I ask about security. I just need to know if my host will protect me enough through default settings (I will keep my wordpress files up to date) or if I have to do something special in the cPanel or add anything else?
    For your concern of security, just make sure you have strong passwords and keep all of your scripts upto-date, that is where problems come from. Your host should of done the stuff on their side to make sure it is secure.
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  18. #18
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    Hi,

    I still have trouble wrapping my brain around what you write

    You have written an e-book, may I inquire as to how many customers you expect to have?

    I do quite a few sites for authors of various kinds, and for the most part all I will and need to do is help them personalize their site a bit, if they have no idea how to do that. None of them are megasellers, the usual author not represented by a publisher sells between 10 and 200 books per year, whether e-books, self-published or published on demand. That's the realistical take. A few special interest authors (e.g. writing esoteric software guides) may sell between 500 and 1000 copies per year, and with that they already are topsellers among the self-published authors.

    None of them even go to the extent as to set up some merchant account, PayPal or a like service appears to be entirely sufficient for the majority (even with 500 copies an author has to ship merely 10 books per week). Past a regular sale of 500 copies/year the publishers tend to become interested enough to contract an author and usually do all the related publicity, marketing and sales for them.

    So I really have a hard time understanding why you go to lengths which would practically qualify you for publishing as a publisher instead of selling e-books as an independant author. I'm afraid of you spending all your income instead of something nice on your hosting/merchant solution.

    c.

  19. #19
    Not sure I understand you chortaj.

    It seems to me that you are answering your own questions. The reason why I try to set up my own site is because I really don't know if this will be a big success or not (just like any other business). I think and hope that it will be a success but I am also trying to be realistic. You start out small to see if it is something you should invest more money and time in and as you said it yourself, publishers are only interested if you have success and they take their share. That leaves me, as far as I can see, with no other options than what I am suggesting here. A simple website with a "buy now button". Domain cost $10, monthly cost for hosting $5-13, e-junkie $5, wordpress are free.... no big deal to me. I don't think I will spend all my income although I am aware that I need money to promote my site and book.

    I really don't see how I can make it any cheaper but please explain - you seem to know more about this business than me and any suggestions are welcome. Thanks.

  20. #20
    I think he may be misunderstanding entirely on what you are wanting/needing. I'm having a hard time understanding what he's trying to tell you.
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  21. #21
    Okay, thanks.

    English is not my native language (pretty obvious I guess...) so I thought I explained myself in a wrong way.
    No matter what, I am still interested in suggestions that leads me in the right direction.

  22. #22
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
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    138
    Hi Lipoic,

    I am simply and indeed saying that you should start "small".

    A nice, cleanlooking blog can be hosted on less than 150 MB (instead of GBs), a solid and truly good host can offer you such for around 5-7 USD even with enough bandwidth thrown in to cover quite many downloads. An e-book commonly will have some 5-15 MB size, so unless you get thousands of buyers each month, bandwidth is no real problem.

    Instead of a 5 $/month solution for a merchant/shop account or some such thing, you can start by directly accepting Paypal or Moneybookers payments yourself and depending on where you live also such things as bank transfer or money orders.

    This way your starting costs would be like 10$ (domain) + 60$ (1 year hosting) = 70$

    The way you set this up, it would be like 10$ + 156$ (hosting with the host you detailed) + 60$ (shop) = 226$

    See the difference?

    Now, I have no idea for how much you want to offer your e-books, but as an unknown author you won't be able to charge a lot in the beginning and for your first book. Say, you charge 6$$ per e-book. With the first solution you would have earned back your outlay with 12 sold books and then start earning some money. With the other solution you would need to sell 38 books before you earned anything.

    Now, I don't know your financial situation. Perhaps you're well-off and eat out at dinner every other night with a bill of 300$ on wine alone . Then what I say doesn't matter.

    However, if 226$ are quite some money to you, then I'd try to save money and use a less expensive way to present yourself online at first until you are sure you will be selling 40 books within a month at least.

    I hope you now understand better what I tried to tell you.

    c.

  23. #23
    Your best bet is to ask around and find someone who has a good reputation and have them set you up with what you need. You can get lots of info on how to do it yourself online but if you really dont know what your doing and you want to pursue a commercial interest then you just need to do it right the first time. I recommend hiring a consultant to set you up. To sell a product your gonna have to spend a little money up front.

  24. #24
    Thanks for clearing that up c.

    I must admit that whether it is $70 or $226 a year means little to me... and no I don't spend 300$ on wine!
    Sure I don't want to throw money out the window but I actually think I get something from such services as e-junkie - they handle the delivery of my e-book and the PDF stamping secures it (partly) from copying. I can also host several domains if I choose the hosting that cost a little more...

  25. #25
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Posts
    138
    Hi Lipoic,

    whether it is $70 or $226 a year means little to me
    Then no problem - I just hate to see people taken advantage of through reading too many commercials.

    c.

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