What Is Web Hosting?
A website is made up of several files, for example HTML, CSS, images etc. and all of these require a place to live. A web host stores those website files on an internet-connected server, which allows them to load when someone logs on to the website. A web host allows you to make a website available on the internet by storing it on a system which is always on and always connected to the web. There are several companies who offer web hosting.
While looking for a suitable web host you need to:
1. Know your requirements.
2. Understand the web hosting products available.
3. Pick the right product for you.
4. Shortlist the companies who offer that product, and whittle them down to one.
1. What Are Your requirements?
To start your search of web hosts, it helps you to have a rough idea of:
1. What your monthly budget is likely to be
2. Your monthly unique traffic
3. Your technology requirements
4. Your technical ability
5. The location where you want the hosting to be in
2. What Types Of Web Hosting Are There?
There are several hosting available, and each one of them serves a slightly different purpose. The three most common hosting solutions are:
Dedicated Hosting: In dedicated hosting you are allowed to lease an entire server, which provides more flexibility and space. Although this type of hosting needs a more significant investment and a higher level of IT competency, it can turn out to be the best choice if your website is very dense and requires a lot of system resources. It is also a great option for sites that need a high level of security.
Shared Hosting: In this, your website is kept with others on one server. It is an affordable option comparatively because you share the cost of the server with other website owners. If your website is large then you may feel that shared hosting leads to slower load time, because here the server is catering for multiple domains and files simultaneously.
Cloud Hosting: It is relatively a new hosting model. In cloud hosting the resources are allowed to be consumed as a service via the internet. This means that you can host the website on the cloud’s server and can add or remove resources like memory and storage as and when they are needed.
3. What Product Is Best For You?
The four criteria listed below (budget, traffic, technology, ability and location) can be used to determine what product would suit you.
Shopping for hosting by budget
If your monthly budget is around $10
If your monthly budget is around $50
If your monthly budget is around $100
If your monthly budget is around $1000
Shopping for hosting by monthly traffic
If your unique visitors is about 1,000/month
If your unique visitors is about 10,000/month
If your unique visitors is about X/month
Shopping for hosting by technology requirements
If you require a particular programming language
If you require a particular server architecture
If your custom requirements are very specific.
Shopping for hosting by technical ability
If you’re new to web hosting
If the idea of using web hosting without a control panel frightens you
If you’re comfortable using a command line
4. What Makes A Good Web Host?
• Support should be free of cost – that would indicate a reliable host.
• Evaluating overselling.
• Evaluating support time. Actually try to file a ticket with a few hosts which you have shortlisted and see what their response time is like.
• Look at the Status board to see the recent problems the provider has been suffering from.
• The access to the hosting Control Panel should be appropriate to your, letting you complete everyday tasks without the need to always approach the Support team.
5. Hosting Forums And Review Sites
Sometimes, there are websites which claim to offer hosting reviews and are really out to make money from affiliate links or through other channels, and as such those websites will not offer an honest review. Never get trapped there and never trust just one site, and always try to check multiple sites before buying.
6. Adequate Disk Space
The meaning of adequate disk space can vary greatly from one site to the other. However, if you get a hosting provider who promises to add extra space when you are in need of it, then you do not have to worry. Before you start out, you should know the amount of space that you would require, and you should make sure that you get more than what is required by you.
7. Reasonable Bandwidth
The measure of data that flows across a network over a set period of time is called bandwidth. This means that if you have 20MB of web page content which to be viewed at once on a monthly basis, then your bandwidth would use 20MB. However, you would want your web pages to be viewed more than a single time in a given month; you should look for monthly bandwidth of at least 10GB.
The Bottom Line
While selecting the web hosting requirements, one has to look at different aspects and then only choose the one which suits the most. It is necessary that one does proper research before choosing a web host. Not only will this help in easing the things in future, it will also help you in saving money!