To get your niche website online you need to purchase your domain name and a web hosting package.
If you’re not sure what this means think of it like a physical shop.
To visit the shop, you need to know the address. In the internet world this is your domain name.
Once you know the address, you can visit the actual shop to browse the goods on display. On the internet this is your web hosting. It’s where all your files (blog posts, pages, images etc) are stored.
How Much Does Hosting Cost?
Web hosting typically costs $5-£12 a month depending on what package you choose and how long you commit for.
Best Web Hosting Service For Niche Websites?
It’s important to choose a good quality, established hosting company for you niche website. After trying several, I now personally host all of my sites on A2Hosting.
A2 Hosting is one of the best hosts I’ve found for a combination of site uptime, (99.9% commitment) speed, security and customer service.
I’ve used other hosts in the past and had issues with sites going down a lot, being hacked as well as being really slow. And I didn't get much (useful) help to get issues fixed.
I love the customer service at A2 Hosting, they are the quickest I experienced in responding to questions and issues… even at weekends! Their support is online 24-7 via email, online chat and phone.
They also have lots of features that make their hosting really easy to use for beginners and with the speed of their sites they are perfect for niche websites like ours!
-->> Click Here to Go to A2Hosting and hit the “Get Started” button.
Which Plan to Choose?
If you are just starting out, then their ‘Drive’ plan is probably all you need. This is what I use.
The major difference between this and the next plan up is the additional ‘turbo boost’. All of my niche websites are pretty quick on the ‘Drive’ plan and there are various ways to improve site speed using theme settings and plugins, so I haven’t seen the need to upgrade as yet.
Once you’ve chosen your plan, they will ask you to either register a new domain name or use an existing one.
Assuming you have chosen your niche website domain name (check out this article if not) enter the name in the appropriate field and click continue to see the payment options.
Here you can choose how long you want to sign up for. The longest option is 36 months which brings your price per month down to $4.99 (the 12-month plan works out at $8.99 per month.)
-->> Click Here to Go to A2Hosting to setup your hosting package
I don’t use any of the additional options for hosting and generally keep the following settings set to the default.
Lastly, if you are registering a domain name, they will offer you ID protection. I usually do take this as I’ve found that without it, I tend to get a lot of SPAM email from people scraping my name and email address from the WHOIS database.
Change The NameServers Setting (If you bought your domain name elsewhere)
If you already have a domain name, then you will need to setup your name server records to point to your new web hosting provider.
Here you can see one of my old niche websites that I am moving to A2 Hosting.
To do this, login to the account where you registered the domain and look for the option to change the ‘nameservers’. This is usually fairly obvious as shown in the screenshot below, but if you can’t find it just contact their support and they should be able to help you.
The above shows an example where I have 2 nameservers setup. In this case I will be changing the nameservers from Hostgator to A2 Hosting
After saving the changes, be aware it can take up to 24 hours to fully take effect.
A good way to check this is using a dns check tool such as whatsmydns.net.
In my case, immediately after making the changes you can see that the update is only showing in a few locations.
The second screenshot is a day later where you can see the propagation is almost complete.
There are various platforms available for setting up a website but don’t be swayed by the fancy marketing! The one I (and most other niche marketers) use is WordPress.
Why? Because it’s open source, free software and there are literally thousands of ‘plugins’ available to help you design your site exactly as you want it.
It’s flexible and easy to use and you don’t need any programming experience.
It’s really easy to get this setup. If you are using A2 Hosting then you can install this with the push of a button. Here’s how:
WordPress Install - Video Guide
WordPress Install - Written Guide
Login into your hosting account and go to your Cpanel. Under the “Softaculous Apps Installer” click the ‘WordPress A2 optimized” option.
Next click the ‘Install Now’ button
Enter your domain name (keeping it set to https) and fill in the Site Name and Site Description as appropriate
Enter an admin username and password (make a separate note of these) and enter an email address to receive a copy of all of the details you entered.
Once you filled in the fields just click the blue "Install" button and you should see something similar to this:
Once it has finished you will see a summary screen similar to the screenshot below.
It gives you 2 links. The first to the site home page and the second to you admin login page. Make sure you make a note of this and bookmark it!
If you click on your homepage it should look something like this:
And clicking on the admin link should automatically log you into your WordPress dashboard which will look something like this:
Next…. Do a little jig and pat yourself on the back (I’ll be impressed if you can do both at the same time!)
But seriously, congratulations! You now have your website online and have taken your first major step to setting up your very own online business.
Check out my next article in this series to find out how to setup and design your niche website to give you the best possible foundation for starting a profitable niche website