By the end of this video, you’ll have a live WordPress website. Yes, you heard me right. We’ll cover a lot of ground in this video and you’ll actually have a live website by the time we’re done. If you watched my last video, you’ll know that you need a domain name picked out at this point. So go ahead and decide on a domain name now if you haven’t already, but don’t purchase it quite yet. In order to get your site online, the next thing you need is hosting. When someone visits your domain, your site’s content will be delivered to them by a server. Without a server, you would just see an error page like this. So in other words, no server means no website. A server is a piece of hardware. I’m sure you’ve seen photos of a server rack or something like this before. Well, only the biggest companies in the world use their own servers these days. Companies like Google and Amazon, for instance. For everyone else, we pay another company to rent use of their servers. When you rent space on someone else’s server, we call this hosting. So to summarize, you need to pay for hosting so that your site will load when someone visits your domain and that’s why the next step to create your site is to select a hosting company. When it comes to choosing a host, there are lots of options available. Since launching my first website nine years ago, I’ve tried hosting with Bluehost, Gandi, WP Engine, WPX, and Kinsta. I use Kinsta for all of my sites now and while I love their service, I’m not going to recommend them to you too because their plans start at $30 a month. Their hosting is excellent, but honestly I’d feel bad recommending that you pay that much knowing that it takes time to make a new website profitable. Once your website is making money, I think switching to Kinsta is an excellent idea, but to get started, I’m going to recommend the same host that I used to create my first WordPress website, which is Bluehost. Bluehost is very affordable with prices as low as $2.95 cents per month. Your site will load fast and the dashboard is pretty slick too. The one thing I don’t like about Bluehost is that they push a lot of upsells, which is how they’re able to offer such cheap hosting, but as long as that doesn’t annoy you too much that I think they’re the best host to get started with. The other benefits of signing up with Bluehost are that they’ll let you register your domain name for free and they’ll auto create a new WordPress site for you which is pretty cool. I have an affiliate link in the description below this video if you’d like to sign up with Bluehost and that affiliate part means that I receive a commission at no additional expense to you if you sign up with my link. If you appreciate these videos and you’re learning a lot, using my link to sign up is a cool way to say “Thanks for the videos.” When you get to bluehost.com click the Get Started button and you’ll be taken to the pricing page. All you need is the Basic plan. You’ll get more than enough storage for images and unlimited bandwidth and it’s good for one domain. If you plan on creating multiple websites, you might want to select the Plus option, but you can always upgrade later and save the money. Now click the Select button and on the next page you can use this field on the left to enter in the domain name you want to register. This gets you the free domain and Bluehost will auto-configure your DNS zone for you, which will get your site online faster. Click the Next button to move on to the signup page and everything that you see here is pretty typical for a signup page. But I just want to point out a few things. Like most hosting companies, Bluehost will ask you to pay annually. You can purchase one to three years of hosting at signup, but it’s not a contract or anything like that. So if you sign up for a few years and you decide in the future that you want to cancel your plan, you’ll be refunded for any of the time that you didn’t use. In the package extra section, you can research the security and SEO tools to see if you’d like them, but personally I don’t pay for them. The one thing that you definitely do want to pay for is the Domain Privacy Protection. If you don’t get privacy protection for a domain name, your full name, your email address, your phone number, and your billing address are all publicly available for anyone to find with a WHOIS lookup tool. To make matters worse, there are loads of companies out there with automated systems that track newly registered domains and add your contact info into a list so they can cold call you later. So trust me, you definitely want to turn this on or you’re going to start getting spam phone calls by tomorrow. Once you complete the signup, you’ll see this page where you can click the Create Account button and you’ll be asked to set your password. Type in a secure password and click Create Account to finalize the account creation process. You’ll be presented with this page saying your account is ready and you can click the Go to login button. We’re so close to finishing the signup process now, so just enter in the password you created and click Login to log into the Bluehost dashboard. Bluehost includes two onboarding steps when you first log in. First, you can enter your site’s title and tagline into these fields, but both of these can be edited later from the WordPress dashboard so you can skip them both right now if you’re not ready. Below, they’ll ask you if you’re going to use a blog or an online store, but all this does is install a few recommended plugins on your site. In my opinion, WordPress is a lot more confusing to learn when you start with a few plugins auto-installed, so I recommend that you leave both of these unchecked, even if you are going to make a blog or an eCommerce store. Once you’re done, click the Continue button to advance to the second step of the onboarding process. On this page, they ask you about your goals and all they do is recommend more plugins based on what you select here. So since you have to select at least one box, I’d go ahead and select whichever one makes the most sense for your website and then below they’ll let you know that they can set up your site for you if you select either of these two options. So I’m going to recommend, since you’re watching this tutorial to learn how to use WordPress, you can pick either of these two boxes and then click on the Continue to Theme Selection button below. On this page you’ll find hundreds of free themes you can choose from, but there are better ways to preview themes for your site. Also, it’s a little bit early to select the theme, so we’re going to put that off for now and come back to it in a future video. I’ll give you a detailed step by step guide to pick the perfect theme in a future video. So for now, click the Skip button at the bottom and you’ll finally be taken to the Bluehost dashboard. That felt like a lot of steps, but you now have access to your hosting dashboard and even better, you actually have a live WordPress website. In the next video, you’ll take a quick tour around the Bluehost dashboard and then log into your site for the first time. I’ll see you there.