This is 2013, and Web 2.0 is no longer a hot buzzword because just about everything’s nice, shiny, and interactive. Your average netizen (does anyone even use that term?) has at least two email addresses, three or more social media accounts, a mobile device that can access the web, and possibly a gigabyte or more worth of other kinds of data stored in various online cloud-based services. So, should an internet user nowadays still opt to make his or her own website and a hosting package to go with it? Well, as matter of need… no, you don’t need to get yourself a domain and sign up for a web hosting account in one of the many cheap unlimited web hosting providers all over cyberspace. But, I would ask you to reconsider and get yourself an actual internet homestead if you do plan to do one of the following things I will be enumerating:
Web blogging can be about anything, for anything, because of anything. You like cars? Blog about cars. You are an ecological activist that wants to expose the big corporations’ Earth-destroying activities? You can blog about that, too. While it is true that you can just hop onto some free blogging platform such as Blogger and WordPress.com, nothing beats having your own hosted space and domain where you have near-total free reign and control over what you post (except if you’re actually doing something illegal, of course).
You like selling things, or buying things so you can sell them. A merchant at heart needs his or her own independent storefront, especially since eBay and other online merchant sites are starting to tighten their policies and piling up more fees. There are so many easy-to-use e-commerce platforms that will help you setup your electronic storefront, and there’s always PayPal to send and receive payments with. Having your own site might mean that you have to be a little more vigilant in keeping it secure and running, but hosting providers nowadays are more than ready to help their subscribers with the technical aspects of maintaining a site, so you shouldn’t worry too much.
You stand for a cause, and you’d like to proudly announce it to the world in the hopes that more would take notice and also share in your convictions. Your site wouldn’t just be a simple blog; it would have to be packed full of information and resources, forums where people can discuss important and relevant topics, and of course, lots of pictures and videos. The more functionalities you want to cram into your site, the more you’ll definitely need your own hosting plan.
Creator of the Next Big App
You don’t think Facebook and Twitter are all that. You think you can come up with a better social media platform that will trounce these established brands! Or, maybe you just want to write code that will integrate all your existing accounts and make them accessible via just one mobile application. Whatever internet service you have in your mind, you will definitely need to host the thing somewhere. It’s a no-brainer to get yourself your own piece of internet real estate to run the thing on.
Stacey Thompson is a professional writer, marketer, entrepreneur, and a lover of weird little animals. She is based in San Diego, California, and has just acquired some cheap VPS hosting for her next online project. Stacey and her friends have a blog, Word Baristas.