You can choose between setting up your own website and choosing from many of the free options online. One of the biggest problems with setting up your own website is that you might not know where to start. Words like “domain”, “FTP” and “URL” draw a blank look from you. One of the more popular options is self-contained webpages that belong to a main website. A good example to start off with is Google’s blogging network, Blogger.com. If you wanted to start your Internet Business from Blogger.com, your site would most likely look something like…
the slash after the “.com” implies that the folder, “yournamehere” is a subfolder that belongs to the main folder, “Blogger.com”. You can almost think of Blogger.com as a filing cabinet and “yournamehere” is just a single manila folder within a particular drawer.
Alternatively, you might get a subdirectory instead of a subfolder. An example is the site, Tumblr.com. It will look like…
So again, although the structure is not quite the same as a subfolder, a subdirectory still allows you to start your internet business; it’s just that you won’t technically own all of the content that is published. With the same analogy as before, you could think of a subdirectory as different drawers in the filing cabinet.
Also, with a lot of these sites, they have quite stringent rules about what can and can’t be published. Sites related to gambling, pornography and sexual enhancement drugs are not permitted. If your site is too “salesy”, it also won’t make the cut, which is the danger for a lot of Internet Businesses. For this reason, a lot of people suggest that you start off with your own website.
A good analogy to use for starting your own website is a house. If you want to send mail to a house, what does it need to have? A postbox. On that postbox, there has to be your house number and address. If you’re talking in terms of websites, the URL is the same as the home address. You might also hear the term “domain” being thrown around sometimes; domain simply refers to the name of the address. The terms URL, domain and web address are often used interchangeably. You buy domain names and that domain name becomes the web address people visit you at.
Now, if you want to build a house, what do you need first before you even start with bricks and mortar? The foundation. In terms of websites, website hosting is the equivalent of the foundation. If your website isn’t hosted on a server, you can’t build your own website. The server is sort of like the local council whom you have to pay yearly for that piece of land. An example of a server is GoDaddy.com.
Contrary to popular belief, that’s pretty much all you need to set up a website. People make it out to be something harder than it actually is, but that’s all there is to it. In terms of advantages and disadvantages, the main advantages are that a hosted website with your own domain is something you own. The server doesn’t own it. You have a lot more freedom with what you want to write as well, within reason.
Websites are sometimes called pieces of VRE or Virtual Real Estate. They do everything that “real” real estate does: they can appreciate and depreciate, can be auctioned off. Space on the site can even be sold to people who want to advertise there. Having said this, websites aren’t impervious to all damages. They can be hacked. They aren’t treated any differently from other webpages online when it comes to SEO and they are still policed the same by online authorities.