Learning how to web host your website can seem like a daunting task if you’ve never done it before. Luckily, there are plenty of other web hosting companies that have made their way from novices to experts over the years, and you can benefit through the wisdom they gleaned from their successes and their business mistakes. This guide on web hosting will help you with everything from how to get your domain name to finding the right shared hosting plan for your needs so that you can get started with building your website today.
Free vs Paid Hosting
When evaluating web hosting companies, one of your first decisions will be whether you want to go with a free option or pay a monthly fee. If you opt for a free service, it will likely come with some limitations and you may encounter difficulties down the road when it comes time to scale up your site. It’s also highly recommended that you back up your website yourself since many free services won’t do it for you. Many websites are hosted on free platforms because they either have limited needs personal blogs, etc. or their owners don’t know what they need and/or don’t want to pay for something they aren’t sure is necessary.
Shared vs Dedicated Servers
A dedicated server is meant for a specific individual or organization. It comes with all of your resources, so you don’t have to share them with anyone else. The downside is that it costs a lot more than shared hosting, and it can’t be scaled down if you run out of bandwidth. A shared server, on the other hand, shares resources between multiple people and organizations – but also lets you scale up when needed (at least temporarily). Unlike dedicated servers, shared servers typically cost less than $100 per month. Most small businesses will want a plan somewhere in between these two options.
VPS (Virtual Private Server)
One of the most popular options you’ll see among web hosting providers is VPS, or virtual private server. Unlike shared hosting, where multiple websites are hosted on a single server, VPS utilizes its own server and resources. This can make them less affordable than shared servers but more reliable and more suited to larger companies with big bandwidth needs. To find out more about how a VPS compares to other types of web hosting, read our guide here .
Managed Vs Unmanaged Web Hosting
Managed web hosting comes with a variety of management tools and services that are included in your price. The biggest benefit is that you do not have to install or manage any software, databases, or even email systems yourself. Your site will still be yours (you won’t lose it if you switch providers), but you won’t have access to any of these services. If you’re not tech-savvy, managed hosting is almost certainly your best bet. It can save you time and energy while keeping costs low—making it one of your best choices overall. Unmanaged web hosting means that all of those things are up to you, but it’s going to cost more money than managed hosting.
How To Choose A Good Website Hosting Provider
Shopping around is a big part of buying a web hosting package, but there are some common pitfalls that beginners make. Here are a few questions you should ask before selecting your provider:
1) Do they provide a money-back guarantee?
2) How quickly can I get set up?
3) Are there extra charges for setup or installation?
4) Is their customer service accessible via email, phone, and/or live chat?
5) Are their packages customizable enough to fit my needs (i.e do they let me choose how much disk space I need)? 6) Do they offer any extras like free domain registration or free marketing tools?