Webbit is all about helping others teach themselves how to be successful in their digital endeavours.
Heard of Cloudways? Maybe you have but are unsure how to install and set up WordPress on their platform? Secure, and reliable managed cloud hosting makes a lot of sense for serious website projects. It's easy-to-use, has rapid server response times and offers easy scaling of resources if your traffic increases.
If you're seeking out the best Wordpress hosting then look no further - it's Cloudways! By the end of this post, you'll know how to get set up on their platform properly, including connecting your domain.
Whilst this is straight forward, there's a number of steps to cover so take it slow and stick with me.
Let's crack on.
Go to the Cloudways sign up page for a free trial.
Step 1. – Click on ‘Start A Free Trial‘:
Step 2. – Complete the form, then click ‘Start Free‘:
Verify the email used on sign-up is yours (check your inbox) to ‘activate’ your new Cloudways account.
Step 3. – Ensure WordPress is selected, then name the three fields along the top accordingly:
Now, it’s time for the interesting bit.
Choose a provider – I went with Digital Ocean which has been truly awesome. Others I know have gone with AWS and Google Cloud and are very happy too; although whether there are any performance benefits for the extra cost remains to be seen.
Vultr High Frequency is said to be even faster than Digital Ocean. It wasn’t available when I signed up, but for an extra $3 per month I think it’s worth considering.
Choose the server size – For a brand new website start small then add resources when necessary. If you're migrating an existing site, I would pick the same server size and see how it goes.
Choose a location for the server – typically the nearest place to your location, and/ or audience.
Step 4. – Check all the details carefully, then click ‘Launch Now‘:
That's it - sign up is complete. Now for the slightly more technical bit.
Let’s recap. You’ve signed up to the Cloudways cloud hosting platform, created your web server and installed WordPress on it.
But, that's not all.
We need to finish setting it up which means a few more steps: add a payment method, enable your free migration (if applicable), connect your domain and install an SSL certificate.
Add a payment method. This is very important because if the free 3-day trial expires, your server and everything on it will be removed completely. There is no warning, so if you’re happy with everything do this immediately!
Click ‘Upgrade My Account‘ to add a payment method:
Get your free migration. Once you’ve added a payment method you can claim your free migration. Go to the grid icon at the top of the screen, then click on ‘Add-ons‘:
Find ‘Application Migration’ on the list, then click the pencil icon on the right to initiate it:
You will now be taken through a series of prompts for information that enables the migration to take place.
It’s self explanatory, but you might not be familiar with certain aspects. If this is the case, just hit up customer support who will gladly explain everything to you (i.e. they're awesome).
Buy a domain (if you haven’t got one already). I’ve used most of the registrars over the years and there is little difference between them.
GoDaddy is the biggest in the world and whilst I would never host anything with them (or much else), their customer support can definitely help you with the next step so they’d get my vote.
Connect your domain. This is a straight-forward task that takes no time at all if you know what to do. It involves a simple edit of the DNS settings (specifically the A record) of your domain name.
Altering the A record on your domain means you can make it point to the new web server you just created at Cloudways. This means the associated website content (on said Cloudways webserver) is shown when someone types your domain name in a web browser
Step 1. – Add the domain name to your WordPress installation.
When logged in to your account, click on ‘Applications‘ (top of the screen) then click on your WordPress installation as named on sign up.
Ignore any pop-ups, then click on ‘Domain Management‘ in the tabs to the left. Add your domain name under ‘Primary Domain’, then click ‘Save Changes‘:
Once it has finished ‘updating the primary domain’, click on the ‘Access Details‘ tab on the left to check the change has taken effect:
Step 2. – Get the IP address of your Cloudways web server.
Remain in the ‘Access Details‘ tab. You’ll find the IP address listed under ‘Application Credentials’ on the right:
Step 3. – To finish, the IP address of your Cloudways server needs to be added to the A record of your domain.
Fundamentally, there is only one way to do this but domain registrars have user interfaces that differ slightly meaning you need to follow their specific instructions:
Registered your domain elsewhere?
Simply search Google for ‘How to alter an A record?' along with the company name where you bought the domain. If there is no obvious walkthrough, just contact their customer support to do it for you (they’ll just need the IP address of your Cloudways server).
Once an A record has been changed it can take up to 48 hours to take effect but in my experience is much quicker.
Install an SSL certificate – This is essential and Google does not like a site without one. The good news is Cloudways provides them for free and it’s a one-click install.
Like the previous tasks, click ‘Applications‘ (top of the screen), then click your WordPress installation. Under application management, click the ‘SSL Certificate‘ tab on the left.
Add your email and primary domain then click ‘Install Certificate‘:
All done! Set up is complete.
If you’re keen to get cracking you can access the WordPress login screen directly from your Cloudways account:
Hopefully, you’re still with me and have managed to install WordPress on Cloudways hosting.
If so, good move! It's the best choice for any serious WordPress website project. Poor performance, and the associated stress, doesn’t happen with the best WordPress hosting; it’s possible to focus entirely on being successful.
Right now, I’m focused on growing the Webbit blog – what about you?
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