Wednesday, 21 August, 2013
After acquiring a domain from GoDaddy, many people want to switch over to another hosting service. Transferring to BlueHost is easy, and the customer representatives are quick to respond and provide helpful advice in a friendly manner.
This article is the first in a series that will explain the process for you.
I kept my Website on Wix for four months, but although they provide some amazing HTML5 apps (including Dropbox) I found their hosting options either expensive or advertisation heavy. My ideal hosting plan would also allow me to improve my site as I built my PHP skills and provide more options for scaling the website up for new purposes without switching hosts. Thanks to a tip from MakeUseOf.com, I found BlueHost and talked to their incredibly helpful staff. The first step, they said, is to built a website under a free domain using one of their most popular CMS options: WordPress, Weebly, Joomla, or Drupal.
WordPress users should know that BlueHost is one of the recommended third-party hosts that are presenting on the WordPress website. They have earned this spot by being one of the easiest platforms to implement WordPress and the one with the best customer support. My personal gripe with WordPress is that all WordPress sites look like WordPress sites, and it is hard to make them
I chose to go with Weebly at first because it seemed the fastest option to implement during my break from school at VFS. It is even more restrictive than WordPress, but it has many features that speed up the web design process. Their are lots of great templates to choose from, and with a little tweaking anyone can make a website that looks great. In comparison to Wix, the editor is more intuitive despite being more restrictive. Wix, just like the GoDaddy Website Builder, requires moving objects by dragging them as if you were using a word processor. This allows a certain amount of freedom, but requires a larger time investment to go from template to a decent looking version of what you want. Weebly only allows dragging and dropping website elements into the main canvas in the template. Only one element fits the canvas horizontally, unless you place a "Columns" element to place two skinny objects side-by-side (see Contacts). This makes organizing your site quick and simple because there is no worrying about margins or adjust elements in relation to each other. However, when you are ready for such a time commitment, it is easy to switch your BlueHost site over to WordPress or one of the more technical options described below.
Joomla is described as the middle ground between WordPress and Drupal. The major drawback is its lack of intuitive Search Engine Optimization (SEO) features, unlike Drupal which is built from the ground up for SEO. Many companies, including ebay.com, GE, and Ikea use Joomla but it excels for making sites for social networking. There is a strong developer community, loads of free apps and other extensions, and Joomla sites can handle much more articles than WordPress.
Drupal, on the other hand, is noted for having the steepest learning curve and a paucity of apps and plug-ins that are free to use. Complaints have been made about the speed of loading Drupal sites - which may take more than 16 times longer compared to WordPress sites. That being said, Drupal is perfect for the Web developer who does not need a large selection of starting themes and wants to create websites with unlimited flexibility. Some key websites made with Drupal include Sony, MIT, and a museum featuring 30000 works of art visible at all times on its website, http://www.dordrechtsmuseum.nl/
The best features are being the most developer and enterprise friendly open source CMS, strong SEO capabilities, and the fact that Drupal can serve thousands of users at the same time without any stability issues.
The next step will be connecting this Weebly site to BlueHost's server under my domain www.dodgethis.com, which is currently being hosted by GoDaddy. My understanding of that process is limited, but I understand it could take a few weeks!