Creating a great website on the cheap

The internet is overcrowded, full of information, but resourceful for headhunters. Nowadays, recruiters are not only looking for aptitudes, but also personalities, and having a personal website is undoubtedly an easy way to show one’s work and personality.

But many Millennials don’t make it a priority. Why? Well, money. Thinking about the student loan debts, finding an apartment, buying a car, and managing a tight budget, for most, it’s a no brainer why Millennials won’t put this task to the top of their to-do list.

However, a clear portfolio online, once set up, is easy to update, but most importantly, a useful career tool. Even when not looking for a job, a professional can catch the eye of a headhunter and land a dream job.

So, how do you set up a website when running on a tight budget? Here are our recommendations.

Hosting

Thousands of websites offer free hosting, but there is a catch: they come with advertisement. For those interested in free hosting services, we advise checking the number of ads displayed, as they vary from one host to another. Be careful to read the fine print, as some sites contain other criteria.

Our thoughts: we don’t recommend them. Though free hosting might sound like a good idea to save money, there are several common issues with it:

1. Losing your blog and hard work: free hosting providers can close their service any time at their own discretion. Remember Yahoo Geocities? Probably not. They closed their service in 2009, and the data are not recoverable as the website was deleted, not decommissioned.

2. There is no safety: because they’re free, these types of hosting companies do not offer security measures. Being hacked is common on the web, and this is a headache nobody wants.

3. The website can crash: a website owner, like a marketing expert, who’d like to blog regularly to show his knowledge, might get very frustrated with it. If one blog post becomes popular and get referred, the entire website can crash as there is no control on the blog server resources.

Our suggestions: opting for a paying hosting company doesn’t mean breaking the bank. As a matter of fact, the most popular one, Bluehost, is affordable. The company offers various hosting packages. We strongly recommend the shared hosting plan, which is the most affordable solution for those who want to blog and show their portfolio. Whatever the number of visits per day, Bluehost ensures the sites they host never go down. At MadlyJuicy, we’ve been using their services since our beginning, as a modest blog, to nowadays, as a magazine, and our owner, Erika Peter, has reported no issues with the company. “I’d recommend updating the chosen package, depending on criteria, such as website space, performance, email accounts, and email storage, she explains. As our content and visits grew, we had no choice but to upgrade.” There are a few other hosting companies offering similar packages. Based on their offers and prices, we would recommend comparing Bluehost to Hostgator and Dreamhost.

The design

The design can be the most expensive part of a website if a professional is hired. Though we recommend web developers and web designers to do their own website to show their aptitudes, those who don’t have coding skills should opt for a free content management system. WordPress is, with no doubt, the best around. The only downside is it doesn’t work with many free hosts, since most don’t support PHP. However, WordPress works well with paid hosts, such as Bluehost, Hostgator, and Dreamhost. The company offers hundreds of free themes, from those with a magazine look to those perfect for portfolios. Depending on the look desired, some would opt for paying themes. Though there are thousands of services offering a wide selection, creative Millennials will find what they need on website such as Themeforest or Elegant themes.

Creating a great website on the cheap

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