If you decide to launch a website, you must focus on two critical components: domain name and hosting solution. Choosing a domain is rather simple and straightforward. If you already have a business, your domain name should be the same as your business name. If you do not, then you will need to do some brainstorming in order to decide on what is the best name for your website. Brainstorming is the hardest task when it comes to choosing and registering a domain.
On the other hand, deciding on a hosting plan is significantly more challenging. There are a lot of providers that offer a variety of plans with different features and prices. The chosen hosting solution will impact your website’s performance and ultimate success. That is why the following article will explain everything you need to know about website hosting.
Why Do You Need Web Hosting?
A domain is defined as the internet address of a website, linked to the IP address of the server where your website files are stored. In order to host a website, you need a server with more computing power than a standard PC.
It is possible to build a server at home, but this requires a significant amount of time and money. You’ll need previous experience with managing hardware and software settings, and the equipment alone costs at least 5 000 dollars. In addition, you have to take into account the cost of electricity and internet connectivity. Because of these difficulties, most website owners opt for the services of a hosting provider.
A hosting provider is a company that offers the service of storing a website on its servers and giving internet users access to it. There are several hosting types that we will cover in the next section, but before we do, let’s mention something else. Each hosting type can be managed or unmanaged.
What is Managed Hosting?
As mentioned above, your hosting solution can be managed or unmanaged. This refers to the task that you will have to undertake. Unmanaged hosting gives you a lot more freedom since you can choose how to configure your server space, what applications you want to install, what security measures you are willing to add, and so on. With this freedom comes a lot more work. You will have to maintain and update everything you choose to add to your server environment.
Since all the tasks fall in your hands, the price of an unmanaged hosting solution is significantly lower compared to managed hosting.
Managed hosting is the opposite of unmanaged. This means that your hosting provider will take care of all server maintenance, and any issues that may arise. You will have a lot less stress and optimal server performance since your hosting provider will assure the best software and apps are added.
You need to decide how much time you want to invest and what is your budget. Depending on this, you can go with managed or unmanaged hosting.
Now that we have covered this important aspect, let’s take a closer look at the types of hosting solutions you can choose from.
Types of Web Hosting
You have to understand the various types of hosting if you want to make the right decision for your website. There are 4 main types of web hosting and they are as follows:
- Shared Hosting
- Virtual Private Server (VPS)
- Cloud hosting
- Dedicated server
Each hosting type comes with its own unique features as well as a difference in resources and price. Here is what you need to know about these main hosting solutions:
Shared hosting is the practice of hosting multiple websites on a single server, each with its own amount of disk space, but sharing the server’s processing power. With shared hosting, users are not responsible for server management because this is handled by the provider, making it a convenient option for those without advanced technical knowledge. Furthermore, shared hosting is the most cost-effective option, which is one of the reasons for its popularity.
One significant disadvantage of shared hosting is the lack of control over your server neighbors, with whom you share computing power, IP addresses, and hard drive space. This can lead to problems like server overload caused by one site’s traffic or your site being blacklisted if your neighbor is blacklisted. If a neighbor’s site is hacked or infected, your site data may be compromised as well.
Because of these limitations and issues, shared hosting is unsuitable for large projects requiring more disk space and computing power as well as a high level of security service edge.
Virtual Private Server (VPS)
VPS hosting is similar to shared hosting in that multiple clients’ websites are hosted on the same server. With VPS, however, each client is guaranteed a certain amount of computing power and resources. This ensures that their website will not be affected if another client’s traffic spikes.
Furthermore, VPS hosting provides customers with root access to the server, allowing them to configure it according to their preferences.
VPS hosting is more stable, secure, and flexible than shared hosting. It is, however, more expensive. As a result, VPS hosting is typically preferred by website owners who have a high volume of traffic and the financial means to hire an administrator to manage and configure the server.
Cloud hosting is made up of multiple servers that can take over for each other in the event of heavy loads or outages. In comparison to a virtual private server, this results in a more stable website. However, the server cannot be customized as easily as with a VPS.
Cloud hosting is known as a nontraditional hosting solution since it utilizes a network of servers, rather than a single physical server which is the case for the other three hosting solutions that we have mentioned.
The price of cloud hosting is the most intriguing aspect. It is usually dynamic, with the owner paying according to resources used per day. Because of this adaptability, cloud hosting is appropriate for websites of all sizes.
Dedicated Physical Server
Renting an entire server from a hosting provider solely for the purpose of hosting your website is known as dedicated hosting. This gives you complete control over all server settings, ensuring maximum security. If you get unmanaged dedicated hosting you will need to hire an expert that will focus on maintaining optimal performance and fixing any technical issues that arise.
Keep in mind that this is the most expensive option and you may need it in the future. No one starts off with dedicated hosting, and most website owners don’t ever transition to dedicated hosting. This type of hosting is ideal for larger businesses.
The hosting service you choose can determine the future success of your website. For this reason, it is important to know which type of hosting is ideal for your website. This guide should give you a better idea of what kind of hosting you may need for your website.