Web hosting is a tool you need to make your website accessible to users when they try to find you using your domain name. Imagine you are about to start your own business. You have hired employees, bought furniture, found out the space for your office, decided the name of your company and registered it. You are all set to go, but wait…you have not signed a sale and purchase agreement. Unless you own physical space, you cannot run your company.
Likewise, your website cannot exist without web hosting. Even though you have decided a domain name, visitors will not be able to find you without web hosting. If you want to grow online, you will need to understand everything about web hosting.
Web hosting is a tool you use to make your website appear on the internet when a user types the domain name in the search bar. To avail of web hosting services, you will need a web hosting service provider.
When a user uses the domain name of your business to find you, the website appears on the browser. It happens because the domains are connected to the servers that can be either dedicated or shared. All the files will be stored in the server so that a user gets information immediately when they want.
Before you contact a web hosting service provider, you will need to finalize the domain name. You can purchase your domain either from a domain registrar or from a web hosting service provider.
Find out the hosting you will need
As you know that your customers cannot find you without any hosting, it becomes essential to choose a good server. A promising server ensures that it will not shut down and your website will show up every time a user tries to find you. Underperforming servers can take a toll on your business. Web hosting service providers generally ensure that the website will remain operational 99.99%. If the efficiency is not as promised, your users will close your site and move to your competitors, leading to a significant loss.
Here are the different hosting plans you can consider for your website:
Shared hosting is a cost-effective option because you will be sharing the same server with multiple other websites. Although it can help you save a small fortune, one of the drawbacks is you may face difficulty with your website operation. Shared hosting will be an ideal option if your website does not consist of a lot of images and videos.
A dedicated server is the most expensive option. Since you will not be sharing the server with any other website, you will have full control over your server. The dedicated server generally requires websites with a large amount of traffic. If you are looking to opt for a dedicated server, make sure that the hosting service provider has the expertise to operate such types of servers.
VPS (virtual private server) hosting is a bit more expensive than shared hosting but cheaper than dedicated hosting. This hosting plan is an idea if your website is receiving a high amount of traffic regularly. VPS hosting mimics as a dedicated server but technically it is more or less like a shared hosting plan. However, it offers better performance than shared hosting.
Cloud hosting is entirely a new type of web hosting server. It allows separate servers to work together as one large server. This type of server is better for growing companies. As the traffic to the website increases, the cloud space also increases. Unlike other hosting servers, cloud hosting servers are based on the pay-by-use method. Your cost will rise as you will need more space.
Decide the type of website you need
Knowing the kind of website beforehand can help you choose a hosting server easily. The kind of website depends on your business.
- Is it a blogging website that needs to provide information to users?
- Do you have an ecommerce store to sell products ir services?
- Is it a business website?
Once you have identified your website type, you will have to make sure that the server supports all features to operate your website smoothly. For instance, if you have an ecommerce, you should choose a server that has ecommerce capabilities.
Based on your business, you will only decide whether you would like to have a static design or a dynamic design of your website. Since a static website does not require you to know codes, it is delivered to the user as a printed page. On the contrary, a dynamic webpage accesses content from a database. It means as you alter the content of the database, the content of the site automatically gets changed.
The cost of web hosting
It is not so easy to determine the value of web hosting. It depends on several factors like:
- the hosting service provider you choose
- the hosting plan you need
If you are a start-up, you should begin with a shared hosting server. It is cheaper than other hosting plans. It will be easy to afford when your business is at the beginning stage. As you see, the traffic is growing, and you can upgrade it. In the beginning, you will need money for various other functions like marketing. You will not be able to afford any upgraded servers.
You should invest in a tool that your business needs. As long as your business does not suffer from the hosting plan you choose, you do not need to shell out money. However, you should delay switching to an upgraded server if the traffic has increased. The shortage of funds should not stop you from choosing an advanced server. If your budget does not allow you to do so, you can take out 12 month loans. While taking out a loan, make sure that you have a repayment plan.
Web hosting is essential to run an online business. Therefore, you should choose a reliable web hosting service provider. Shop around and dive into details before taking the plunge.