How To Setup Your Small Business Website, Email… For $5.99 per Year

By Angsuman Chakraborty, Gaea News Network
Monday, September 11, 2006

I am talking about setting up a full featured website for your small business or personal use with your own domain and receiving your address.

You can setup emails for yourself and your employees. It comes with high quality spam protection. You have unlimited bandwidth on your website and potentially unlimited disk space. You can IM between your employees at remote locations. You and your employees can setup one or more calendars which can be shared. You can also sell your products for free.

There is no catch. You do not have to pay more than $5.99 per year and you do not have to display any ads or other advertisements on your site or anywhere else. And if you own a domain then it is all free. Interested?


  1. How to get your domain name?
  2. How to register your domain name?
  3. How to get free website and email addresses for your domain?
  4. How to create your free website?
  5. How to setup your free email accounts?
  6. How to setup IM for your employees & company calendar?
  7. How to reliably accept payments online?
  8. Summary

How to get your domain name?
First you need to find a domain name that is available. For your business you should try to get your preferred name in the following order: .com, .net, .biz. Do not use .info as it is infested with spam and dubious sites so many internet users consider all .info sites to be of dubious nature. You can use one of the free AJAX enabled domain name search engines for faster search and suggestions. I like instantdomainsearch.

How to register your domain name?
You can register your domain with one of the several available domain name registers. I normally use GoDaddy. However, for this article, I would suggest using 1 & 1, which offers cheaper domain name registration at $5.99. You have to make no further payments.

How to get free website and email addresses for your domain?
Apply to Google Apps for your domain (review). It will ask you to sign-up with your Google account. If you do not have one, you can create one for free. After you signup with your Google account you will be asked few basic questions including your organization name, domain name, no of accounts needed etc.

Provide a reasonable number for number of accounts needed. 50 is fine for a small business.
On submission you will be asked to select your services. Select all. Now you have to setup your services.

How to setup your free website?
To setup your website click on Domain web pages in Google App Dashboard. To setup simply click on Continue. Note the CNAME destination provided by Google (for example:

You can set up CNAME record as follows:

1. Log in to 1& Control Panel at
If you have only one contract, you will be taken to Administration area. If you have
multiple contracts, click the Package you want to access. You will then be taken
into Administration area.

2. Click ‘Domains’ under ‘Package Features’

3. Select your domain or subdomain. Click the arrow next to ‘DNS’ and select
‘Edit DNS Settings’

4. Choose ‘CNAME’. Enter the cname address. check the box and click ‘OK’

5. A confirmation is displayed.

The cname change will propogate in 24 hours or less.

Now you can create your web pages by clicking on Domain web pages in Google Dashboard and then clicking on Edit your web pages. The instructions are intuitive and very easy. You can create dozens of web pages in minutes, I know I did. You can choose your theme from several professional themes and choose your layout (can easily be changed later). You are absolutely free to add your content and even your advertisements in these pages. Page editing is pretty intuitive using their WYSIWYG editor.

How to setup your free email accounts?
To setup your email you will need to point your MX records (as detailed below) to the addresses provided by Google. Delete any existing MX records before entering new MX records.

  1. Log in to your account at
  2. If it’s not already selected, click the Administration tab.
  3. Click Domains. The Domain Overview page appears.
  4. Select the checkbox next to the domain that you will be using with Google Apps for Your Domain.
  5. From the DNS menu, select Edit DNS Settings.
  6. Under Advanced DNS Settings, select the Other mail server radio button.
  7. Enter MX records as provided by Google.

Now you can add all your email accounts by clicking on Create new accounts in Google Apps Dashboard. For each account you will be provided with a temporary password while creation. You can then provide the account details to your employees.

You can access the emails either through their GMail web interface or from your desktop email clients like Microsoft Outlook.

How to setup IM for your employees & company calendar?
At this point, assuming you have followed the steps above, your IM and calendar should be activated for you. Simply access them from your Google Apps Dashboard.

How to reliably accept payments online?
You can signup for a free PayPal account which allows you to accept payments online. I would recommend setting up a business account. They charge 2.9% + $0.30 USD for transactions below $3000. Another reliable option (for US merchants only) is using Google Checkout (review).

Most of the services above is provided for free by reputable service providers. What is important is not just the cost but the ease of use of these services. Using them as described can make it very easy to create an online presence for your company and sell your products and services.


May 21, 2010: 2:02 pm

I am getting many information in the wikipidia wepsites

May 13, 2010: 1:57 am

Thank you for sharing this helpful guide startup with 1and1. Hope i won’t have a hard time with setting up domain with google app anymore. thanks

February 28, 2009: 4:35 pm

Good article. I also would have suggested 1and1 a couple years ago, but their customer service has gone downhill, especially if you try to cancel.

I know of a couple people that did not renew their credit card information on file (for domain name auto renew). Rather than just canceling or suspending their account, 1and1 sent the bill to collections. These were both good customers beforehand.

I would strongly advise doing business elsewhere to avoid very big hassles (and credit score dings) for an easy to make mistake.

On another note, I really like the advice on Google Checkout and Google apps. That is a very useful piece of information that a lot of people do not know about.

May 25, 2008: 2:43 pm

Very good ‘Howto’. Helped me getting started ;)

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