Understanding Hosting

Which Type of Hosting Do You Need?

If you’re looking into creating your own website for your online business, you’ve probably heard the term “hosting” a good bit. But do you really understand what hosting is and why you need it? You may need a better understanding of the different types of hosting and which would be the best fit for your site. Let’s take a look at a useful beginner’s guide to hosting!

Generally, there are four different types of web hosting:

Shared, Virtual Private Server (VPS), Dedicated, and Cloud Hosting. While all types of hosting servers will act as a storage centre for your website, they differ in the amount of storage capacity, control, technical knowledge requirement, server speed, and reliability. Let’s dig in and look at the main differences between a shared, VPS, dedicated, and cloud hosting.

Shared Server Hosting

Introduction

In shared hosting, one’s web site is placed on the same server as many other sites, ranging from a few to hundreds or thousands. Typically, all domains may share a common pool of server resources, such as RAM and the CPU. As cost is extremely low, most websites with moderate traffic levels running standard software are hosted on this type of server. Shared hosting is also widely accepted as the entry level option as it requires minimum technical knowledge.

Disadvantages

No root access, limited ability to handle high traffic levels or spikes, site performance can be affected by other sites on the same server.

Virtual Private Server (VPS) Hosting

Introduction

A virtual private server hosting divides a server into virtual servers, where each website is like hosted on their own dedicated server, but they’re actually sharing a server with a few different other users. The users may have root access to their own virtual space and better secured hosting environment with this type of hosting. Websites that need greater control at the server level, but don’t want to invest in a dedicated server.

Disadvantages

Limited ability to handle high traffic levels or spikes, your site performance can still be somewhat affected by other sites on the server.

Dedicated Server Hosting

Introduction

A dedicated server offers the maximum control over the web server your website is stored on – You exclusively rent an entire server. Your website(s) is the only website stored on the server.

Disadvantages

With great power comes… well, greater cost. Dedicated servers are very expensive and it’s only recommended to those who need the maximum control and better server performance.

Cloud Hosting

Introduction

Cloud hosting offers unlimited ability to handle high traffic or traffic spikes. Here’s how it works: A team of servers (called a cloud) work together to host a group of websites. This allows multiple computers to work together to handle high traffic levels or spikes for any particular website.

Disadvantages Many cloud hosting setup do not offers root access (required to change server settings and install some software), higher cost.
– via Web Hosting Secret Revealed (WHSR)

Avoiding Common Mistakes

Making rookie mistakes can definitely cost you when you’re shopping for web hosting. You’ll want to find the right hosting for your site without overpaying or picking services you just don’t need. Let’s take a look at a few beginners mistakes and how you can avoid making them!

Buying on Price

There are two competing narratives offered by web hosting companies:

All web hosting is basically the same, so buy the cheapest thing you can find.

Quality costs money so buy the most expensive hosting you can afford.

Neither one of these is really accurate.

The discount hosting companies promote the idea that web hosting is essentially a commodity, and so therefore price is the only thing that really matters. They fall all over themselves to offer the cheapest monthly rate, along with coupons and specials and discounts. It’s a race to the bottom that no one really wins (least of all the customer).

But the difference a few dollars can buy in terms of customer service support and technical expertise is really quite outstanding.

Another thing to realize about discount web hosts is that the only way they can afford to sell hosting for so cheap is to sell in volume and keep people on board for a long time. This means several things:

There will be more customers grouped onto a single shared server.
There will be relatively little attention paid to individual issues, because there are too many individuals to pay attention to.
There will be incentives to pay for long-term contracts.
There will be difficulties in moving or transferring.

The last one is especially troublesome, and seems to only come up with shared hosting providers in the under-$5 range. They will make URL transfer a complicated, multi-step process; they will provide no instructions for unlocking or transferring domains anywhere in the help files; they will require phone verification of cancellation; they will hide buttons for dealing with transfer and cancellation under vaguely-named menu labels; they will flood their FAQ and knowledge base with articles about transferring to their service, to push “transfer away” articles down the page in search engine results.

They say “you get what you pay for.” With discount web hosting you often get a whole lot more on top of that.

Of course, on the other end of the spectrum is the “you’ll be so proud that you could afford it” premium web hosting.

Sometimes this is deliberately over-priced for what it is — a hosting company sells a fairly standard VPS plan and dresses it up with words like “blazingly fast” and “white glove support” and charges twice as much as a similar plan from another company.

More often, the problem is simply overselling. If you are running a personal blog that will be read by a few hundred people, you probably don’t need the Turbo-Charged Premium 3000X ClusterRack Edge Server with Water-Cooled Multiplexing.

Exacerbating the marketing problem is the tendency of shoppers to compare on price, and buy something in the middle. Part of the reason for $2.50/month web hosting is that it makes the $5.50/month plan seem like a reasonable mid-grade solution, rather than just another cheap shared hosting plan.

A better approach is to figure out what type of hosting you need first (see the chapter in this guide on Types of Web Hosting), and then look for well-reviewed and highly-rated companies that offer that type of plan.

If it comes down to two options that have very similar features and are equally well-reviewed, then you can think about picking the cheaper one to save a few dollars. But most of the time, once you get to the two or three hosting companies and plans that will fit your needs, you’ll find they are going to be priced very close to each other
– via www.whoishostingthis.com

Have you chosen the right hosting for your website yet? Any tips for other web hosting shoppers?

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