In my previous post I wrote about Domain Registration. If we have done our homework correctly we should now have a little bit less than $10 invested in our domain name so now it's time to look into web hosting. Although it is possible to run your own internet server for the most part people at this level of the game use a web host. Your data resides on their server and people communicate through that server to access your data.
Hosting packages like domain names offer a wide variety of choices (and you saw in the previous post how companies like to bundle domain registration and hosting together). Since we are just a Dude and a Dog and we want to keep the Dog in biscuits and gravy train we are going to look for a free hosting package.
Most companies that offer free web hosting do so so that they can plaster ads all over your 'free' website. Your content draws visitors, those visitors sometimes click on ads, those ads generate revenue. These free websites range from the mildly obnoxious to the completely obnoxious. Not exactly the atmosphere that you want to showcase yourself and your artwork.
There are two brilliant exceptions. They allow you to redirect you domain name to their servers for free, they place no ads on your site (and in fact allow you to earn revenue should you decide to place ads on your site) and are completely free. How do they do it? Volume ;-)
Weebly is a San Francisco based company whose mission is to enable people put to their information online quickly and easily and without any specialized knowledge with a drag and drop style webpage editor.
Google Sites is Google's answer to putting content creation in the hands of content creators. Create your own page or a group page simply and easily with no required knowledge of html or CSS. Dozens of prebuilt templates that can also be customized. Google sites is also integrated into the complete Google toolset enabling you to integrate such tools as Google Maps and Google Calendar easily into your website. Although you probably won't want ads on your artist website but Google Adsense also integrates nicely into Google sites.
For you Apple users out there, check out iweb - a simple to use website editor that is well integrated with everything Apple. You will have to find web hosting to use iweb but the ease of use might make it worth it for you.
Give it a try and see what you think.