Webhosting and domain names are the most elementary drivers of your website’s success on the internet. While domain name refers to your website’s addresses, hosting platform is essentially a digital space of the internet where you place your website’s files. You need your audience to easily access your website, which is why a reliable web hosting is the major step in how your web pages are delivered to your customers.
It is important to understand how the quality of service, provided by webhosting companies, impacts your business, especially when it is an e-commerce one. As you know there are sudden occurrences known as “downtime” when websites are inaccessible to online visitors, which can last for a few seconds to several hours. Utilizing the services of a reliable webhosting company, therefore, means little or no downtime. Similarly, every minute your site down could mean losing another potential customer. Moreover, inadequate webhosting has adverse effects on your search ranking. It can also make your business appear unreliable and have a negative impact on your reputation.
So how do you know who you should get to host your website? Before you start looking for an appropriate hosting mate, take a moment to think what you need to know about hosting.
Types of website hosting
Shared Hosting is a particular type of web hosting service where websites share the same physical server with many other users, effectively reducing the cost of hosting. While shared hosting shares resources like CPU, RAM, bandwidth and disk space, your files are protected and isolated from others.It’s like having lots of programs running on your own computer – everything works fine as long as they all behave. Shared hosting is commonly preferred with small to mid-sized businesses or when you are starting a new business that requires an online storefront. It is affordable, easy to use, flexible, and can be fully managed. However, with shared hosting, your website can become slower; it can have negative brand association; also shared hosting means less security.
Virtual private server (VPS)
A virtual private server (VPS), also called a virtual dedicated server (VDS), is a virtual server that appears to the user as a dedicated server, but that is actually installed on a computer serving multiple websites. A single computer can have several VPSs, each one with its own operating system (OS) that runs the hosting software for a particular user.VPS Hosting is one of several types of web hosting accounts you can choose from to host your website online. There are many advantages of using VPS hosting: you can have full access to the VPS’s operating system, with unrestricted root or administrator permissions; you have increased privacy because you don’t have to share your OS with anyone else; it is customizable; you have complete control on it. The main disadvantage of using VPS hosting is its lack of performance because your site will be unable to cope if it suddenly experiences a surge in traffic.
As the name suggests, dedicated hosting is a hosting configuration in which a server is dedicated to a single client with dedicated resources. Dedicated hosting plans are ideal for WordPress websites with very large number of visitors. Dedicated servers are ideal for large organizations or websites with much higher traffic. Clients get full control of the server that allows them to configure it to meet their own needs. Although it is expensive, but there are many advantages of dedicated hosting: server space can be tailored to your specific needs; high performance and stability by ensuring nearly 100% of uptime; server congestion is much less of an issue, especially when compared to shared hosting options; you are able to deploy security measures such as anti-virus and firewall configurations; some dedicated hosting services come with a certain level of support.
Cloud hosting makes applications and websites accessible using cloud resources. Unlike traditional hosting, solutions are not deployed on a single server. Instead, a network of connected virtual and physical cloud servers hosts the application or website, ensuring greater flexibility and scalability. The main concept of cloud hosting is that the resources required to maintain your website are spread across more than one web server, which are then utilized as per the need. This greatly reduces chances of any downtimes in case of a server malfunction. It also allows you to manage peak loads easily, without facing any bandwidth issues. You get scalability with cloud servers. It is very easy and quick to upgrade by adding memory and disk space, as well as being more affordable. In recent years, in the domain of cloud computing, the industry standard management console for hosting accounts is cPanel. Thus, cPanel hosting becomes important for creating email accounts, resetting passwords, and setting up mail forwarders
Let us dive into the things that need to be considered before choosing a good shared host:
1. Determine which type of site you are building
Just as how the amount of expected traffic or server load affects hosting plan, the type of website you are building will determine which features are most important to have. Some hosting providers, for instance, focus on promoting e-commerce functionality while others are good for blogging or SEO.
- Blog: Consider a WordPress webhost, which is powering more than a quarter of all websites on the internet.
- Online storefront: Consider an e-commerce hosting service where security and customer payment information are taken care of.
- Online portfolio or Résumé: Consider a website builder, which is the fastest way to produce a professional online presence that showcases your work.
- Personal site: Consider a low-cost, high-value host. Keep an eye out for hosting providers that include high-speed solid-state drives or a content delivery network.
- Business site: Consider a host with which you can grow, and that stand by your side as you become more and more successful.
2. Bandwidth and data transfer
Bandwidth refers to the amount of data downloaded or uploaded from your website and it impacts your site performance. It is all about how quickly visitors can access your site information; that is, the higher the bandwidth, the greater number of people can view your site simultaneously. So if your website needs greater visitors and higher traffic, you need to choose webhosting accordingly.
3. Uptime rates and reliability
Most hosts guarantee a certain amount of uptime and will reimburse you for any unplanned outages beyond the service-level agreement. Guarantees typically range from 100% to as low as 99%, although most shared hosting customers will find themselves perfectly happy with the ultra-common 99.9% uptime threshold.
4. Security and support
It is believed that a website’s security is largely dependent upon an administrator’s behavior and the technology that is used. However, it was found that more than 40% of websites are compromised because of a host’s vulnerability. So be sure to look for the providers that include firewalls, monitoring services, and other security add-ons. Furthermore, hosting customers would be hard-pressed to find a provider that doesn’t offer 24/7 support through multiple channels, but actual execution varies widely. Therefore, customer service should be responsive and ready to assist.
Choosing a right website hosting service might be time consuming and tedious, but it is important for your business’s long-term benefits. You must determine beforehand the type of website you are going to build and what its requirements are. In view of this, the above mentioned tips will greatly help you.
Birbahadur Singh Kathayat is the founder of Lbswebsoft, where he helps his clients to build powerful brands through content marketing, search engine optimization, website development and web design. He is a writer and author on Socialmediaweek, Semrush, e27 and other publications. You can follow him online at Google+, LinkedIn or Twitter