To make a website you must own a domain name and blog hosting. But what’s a domain name? What’s a blog hosting? Aren’t they the same?
It’s important that you are crystal clear on their differences before you move on to create your first blog or website.
Many beginners don’t know that these are two separate things.
In this beginner’s guide, we will explain the difference between a domain name and blog hosting.
What is Blog Hosting?
Blog hosting (or Web Hosting) is the place where all the files of your website live. It is like the home of your website where it actually lives.
A good way to think about this is if the domain name was the address of your house, then web hosting is the actual house that the address points to.
All websites on the internet, need web hosting.
When someone enters your domain name in a browser, the domain name is translated into the IP address of your web hosting company’s computer. This computer contains your website’s files, and it sends those files back to the users’ browsers.
Blog hosting companies specialize in storing and serving websites. They offer different types of hosting plans to meet their customer’s needs.
What is a Domain Name?
Domain name is the address of your website that people type in the browser’s URL bar to visit your website.
In other words, if your website was a house, then your domain name will be its address.
Now let’s get into the detailed explanation.
The Internet is basically a giant network of computers connected to each other through cables. To easily identify them, each computer is assigned a series of numbers called IP address.
This IP address is a combination of numbers separated by dots.
Typically, IP addresses look like this: 62.547.32.1
Computers have no problem identifying and remembering these numbers.
However, it would be impossible for humans to remember and use these numbers to connect to websites on the internet.
To solve this problem, domain names were invented.
A domain name can have words or numbers which makes it easy to remember website addresses.
Now if you wanted to visit a website on the internet, you don’t need to type a string of numbers. Instead, you can type in an easy to remember domain name, for example, adollarearned.com.
So to clarify:
A domain name is like the address of your home. Blog hosting, on the other hand, is your house.
And inside your house (Blog hosting) is where you place your furniture (furniture being your website and blog content).
Instead of street name and area code, set of words or/and numbers “adollarearned.com” are used for the website’s naming’.
The Computer hard disk and memory of your host are used instead of instead of wood and steel for storing and processing data files.
Are Domain Names and Blog Hosting Related?
Domain names and blog hosting are two completely different services.
However, they work together to make websites possible.
Basically, all domain names are in a massive address book that is constantly updated. Behind each domain name, the blog hosting service is storing your website’s files.
Without domain names, it will not be possible for people to find your website.
Without blog hosting, you cannot build a website at all.
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What do I need to Build a Website? Domain Name or Web Hosting?
To build a website you will need both a domain name and web hosting account.
Buying a domain name alone only gives you right to use that particular domain name for a specific period (usually 1 year).
You need web hosting to store your website’s files. After you get hosting, you need to update your domain name settings and point it to your web hosting service provider.
You can also buy both the domain and hosting from the same company. Typically a domain name costs $14.99 / year, and web hosting normally costs $7.99 / month.
If you are starting your first website, then this may sound like a lot.
Thankfully, SiteGround, an official WordPress.Org recommended hosting provider, has agreed to offer our users a free domain name and over 60% off on web hosting.
Once you have purchased hosting and register your domain name, you can start building your website.
For complete step by step instructions, see our guide on how to make start a blog in 7 easy steps.
Do I have to buy them together? Or can I buy them separately?
You can buy a domain name and web hosting from two different companies. However, in that case, you will have to point your domain name to your web hosting company by editing its DNS settings.
On the other hand, if you purchase your domain name and web hosting from the same company, then you will not have to change domain name settings.
It is also much easier to manage and renew both services under the same dashboard.
If you want to buy domain names separately, then you can do so from top providers like Godaddy and NameCheap.
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