Ever wonder what happens when a website goes live? It is easy to see why people put off getting a new website. There are a lot of moving parts. A web designer or web host can handle the heavy lifting so you can focus on your business. Still, it’s helpful to know what happens in order to bring your website to the Internet. No matter what your website contains, there are three essential parts that have to work in harmony to make your site go live. (Going live is just the beginning, by the way. After your site is live, there are numerous best practices to follow to make sure your website engages and brings in customers.)
Here is what happens when your website goes live:
1. The Domain Name
When you buy a domain name, you are basically buying an easy-to-remember shortcut. LTnow.com is much easier to remember than 22.214.171.124/usr/bin/gtxpr13/ltnow/sites/www.ltnow.com/web/content/. Domain names cost $8-$20 per year and end with a TLD like .com or .org. Most domain names are very easy to buy, except for those that require special permissions or releases, such as .gov. Domain names are available through an organization that manages the reservation of domains, known as a Registrar. Some registrars offer free email, hosting, websites, etc. They also handle the DNS, which is the part that comes next.
2. The Domain Name Server (DNS)
The DNS is like a yellow pages phone book (only still useful) and tells the internet where to point your domain name. Your DNS is usually but not always at your registrar. The DNS looks like ns.lieberman.com and ns2.lieberman.com. Once that points to the right name server, the name server will deliver an A record (Ay-Record), an MX record(EM-EX-record), a Cname record (SEE-Name record) or more. These tell the different kinds of web traffic what to do and which server to go to. For example, the A Record usually points to your website, while the MX Record tells your email where to go. Your customers won’t see this process as it’s happening, but it’s how your site gets delivered from your web host to a user’s computer.
Updating your DNS is the only thing in this business that isn’t instant. Since there are DNS all over the world, they have to relay the information to each other to point people to the right place. Your website might go live on your home internet that is using one DNS, while your data plan on your phone won’t show your website until tomorrow morning. It takes about 48 hours for the whole world to have updated DNS. Depending on how that information propagates, your cousin in Florida might see your new website before you do!
Once you have your domain name pointing to the right DNS and the right A record, people can find their way to your web host.
3. The Web Host or Web Server
Website hosting is a very important part of this process. Your web host is where your website actually lives. The files and databases used to display your website are on a web server. When we design a WordPress site, we create several different kinds of files that all work together to display your web page. PHP files process commands and data from a database that is converted to HTML. The HTML is styled with CSS and they all come together to display every page on your website.
The Simple Way to Make Your Website Go Live
There are numerous web hosting companies out there to choose from. However, it can be a challenge to make your website go live if the various parts of the process struggle to connect. Purchasing a domain name and web hosting from a single source is appealing to many businesses, and can help the process happen more easily. Lieberman Technologies offers business class web hosting and can help your business to secure a domain name if you don’t already have one. In addition, we offer web services such as website design, WordPress development, and SEO (Search Engine Optimization) to help your company website be the best it can be.
Contact us and let’s talk about the website you have or the website you want.