Why You Need Web Hosting
Web hosting refers to the service used to house your webpages to make them visible for people to view on the Internet.
Your content is stored on servers which are connected to the Web. Without this service your blog or website would not be visible online.
Why not just host your website yourself, on your own computer?
Well, you could, if you had a computer that was powerful enough. In fact, most computers are configured to allow networking between computers now.
The problem is, you probably want a lot of traffic. You want thousands of people a day to visit your blog or website.
Do you really want that many people having access to your own personal computer?
Not to mention the fact that, If you were hosting your blog on your own computer, it would literally blow up from that much traffic.
You could, if you had the money, invest in creating your own server.
But you’ll need a lot of expensive equipment, you’ll be constantly updating the programming and maintaining the infrastructure and you’d have to be there to monitor the system 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.
And that’s why you need web hosting. You need a system that’s powerful enough to handle anything you throw at it, and there’s no way you could afford to build that system yourself.
Free Web Hosting Options
Web 2.0 properties like Squidoo and HubPages are free to use and you can publish just about anything you want. You can create thousands of pages if you like and you can even use these for generating income with affiliate marketing or to promote your own products.
Free blogging platforms like WordPress and Blogger give you a few more options and bloggers everywhere are using these sites. Start a personal blog, an affiliate blog or set up a blog to promote your business.
You may also find some companies who sell ready-made blogs or websites with hosting included. Typically, with these packages, you’ll eventually have to pay for the hosting. This gives you time to find out if the site is going to be profitable before you invest in hosting.
You’ll often hear this referred to as Shared Hosting because someone else is hosting your site for you. And on the downside, with these types of sites your site is a sub-domain of the main site. Which means it’s not going to be easy for people to find your site using a domain name.
Paid Web Hosting
Free web hosting has it’s benefits. Obviously, it doesn’t cost you anything. Also, in most cases, you don’t have to worry about whether the site is going to crash. But that’s just most cases.
One of the major drawbacks of using paid hosting is that you have no control over what happens with your site.
Let’s say you’ve been running a really high-profile blog on Blogger. And you get thousands of visitors every day.
What happens if, for some reason, Blogger suddenly shuts down the site? Your blog is gone!
Or maybe you’ve built up a few hundred Hubs at HubPages and you’re raking in the affiliate commissions every month. And then HubPages decides to put through a policy change that says no more affiliate links?
THAT’S why you need paid web hosting.
So you can control your own business!
What To Look For When Choosing A Hosting Plan
Server: For simple text-based websites the server type isn’t really that important. You’ll see Windows, Linux and UNIX, though. Windows is the most user-friendly and UNIX offers the most security.
Disk Space: Most of the dedicated hosting programs offer unlimited Disk Space but keep in mind there are some hidden limitations. If your site is going to have a lot of graphics or videos you’ll want to make sure you have plenty of disk space included in your plan.
Bandwidth: Bandwidth has to do with the data transfer rates on your site. If you’re expecting a lot of traffic or you’ll be offering a lot of downloads you’ll want to be particularly careful about bandwidth.
Type of Hosting: Share or dedicated hosting? That is the question. When you start comparing plans you’ll see that’s there’s really not that much of a price difference between shared and dedicated hosting plans. Ante up the difference and get your own dedicated hosting. This is your business we’re talking about. You don’t want to be ‘sharing’ it with anyone!
The Main Aspects Choosing Web Hosting Company
There are various factors that you need to keep in mind while selecting a good web hosting service provider. Following the right techniques is always essential to select the most efficient web host.
Having a perfect and well-built website is one of the best assets of any online business. The hosting of a website is important for its foundations and so you need to be highly careful while choosing the right hosting provider.
A large number of hosting firms have developed like mushrooms in the recent years and so you should know the right ways of selecting an appropriate service provider. You need to be aware of all the vital aspects that are related to website hosting.
Searching for a proper website can be a highly daunting task but by considering the right factors you will be able to determine a suitable company.
A smart way of figuring out a premium web hosting service is to ask 10 important questions and giving answers to them.
1. What amount of web space and bandwidth do you need?
You need to decide the correct amount of web space that will be perfect for your website. This way you will be able to buy the proper disk space on the server of your web host.
There should be enough space for your site and it is also a good idea to have some extra space keeping in mind the future development of your business.
Besides web space, unlimited bandwidth is also crucial. Fast transfer of your data will help the visitors in exploring your site smoothly.
You should also ask yourself about how much money you will be able to spend for the hosting services. This will help you in determining the type of hosting plan that you can afford. There are many low cost web hosting services that are available in the market.
Apart from that, various free hosting providers are also there. However, you must always ensure that you get the best quality and all the requirements are met. In case of serious business it is a good idea to avoid free hosts.
3. The features you get
It is essential to plan on the features that you need. Find out the company that will provide you with the necessary amount of domains and e-mail accounts. There are also many website developing tools that you can get. And when possible, get a dedicated IP address. Not a shared one.
4. Which control panel do you need?
While choosing a good web hosting company you should also decide on which control panel will be best for yourself.
CPanel is the most common control panel that is used in the world of hosting but there are other options such as Plesk and DirectAdmin.
I HIGHLY recommend getting a host that uses cPanel. Period!
5. Does your web host provide 24/7 customer support?
This is a vital thing that you need to know. While handling a website you will face various technical problems. In such case you need the help of your hosting provider. It is always a better idea to go for a company that provides ideal assistance to the clients.
6. Experience of web host
Before selecting a hosting company you should know for how long they have been working in this particular field.
7. Type of server
Ask your web host about the type of server which they use. This will help you to understand whether it is perfect for your website or not. Make sure that you are provided with fast web hosting.
8. Domain registration
It is essential for you to know the ways of registering your domain.
9. Upgrading your hosting plan
You must ask your hosting provider that how your hosting package will be upgraded on the basis of your future needs.
10. Special deals
You can ask a hosting company about any kind of special deal or coupons that may be available.
This strategy will be helpful in finding the best web hosting company.
Web Hosting Reviews
Sorting Through it All – How Reliable are the Reviews?
If you do a search for web hosting.. you will find there are about 300 million results.. with a lot of them being web hosting review sites.
The only problem with a lot of the review sites is that you may very seldom get a completely unbiased opinion. The review sites (logically) have affiliate partner agreements with the hosting companies.
In the interest of higher profits.. often times they will give the highest rating to the web host whose affiliate program pays the most.
There are those who do give honest and comprehensive reviews of some of the leading web hosting companies…but I have seen a lot of them who are listing mediocre web hosts at the top of the list simply because that affiliate program pays more than the others.
Free or Cheap Web Hosting
A lot of beginners start out with one of the free web hosting options. Free hosting may be fine if you are simply putting up a page with photos of the new kittens for friends and relatives to view online. However, using a free hosting service is not a good idea if you are intending to run an online business.
If you will be using your website to make money online.. cost should not be your number one concern when it comes to your web hosting provider. The most important thing you should be concerned with is reliability.
There are a lot of free and/or very inexpensive web hosting options.. however, it is important that your website be online when you need it to be and not down or unavailable for extended periods of time. Having your website unavailable when visitors come calling will cost you far more over time than you will be saving in using the free or cheap.. unreliable web hosting.
Nothing could be worse than having your site go down on Friday night.. only to find that your economy web hosting service is some tiny fly-by-night outfit being run by a couple of web host wannabees… Igor and his brother.. and they have gone fishing for the week-end.
For a few dollars more a month you can get completely reliable web hosting with 24/7 support. Choose from a full range of website hosting solutions with the web hosts we have listed beow. These web hosts have a reputation for being extremely reliable.. with excellent uptime and superior customer support.
After all.. these are the people who will have complete control of your server space and file maintenance.. so it is important to know you are in good hands and will have access to all the services and features you may need.
I have been in Online Marketing for more than 10 years.. having started my first online business in 1998. Over the years I have used many web hosts.
I was lucky enough to find Host Gator when it was a new company just starting out. I decided to give them a try and asked if they could set up my account to my specifications.
Brent (founder) called me back and personally set up my account for me just the way I wanted it. He gave me his personal cell phone number in case I had any further requirements.
After a few months.. I was so happy with the hosting and the exceptional support.. I called him back and had him set up three additional accounts for me.
That was quite a few years ago.. and I still have several accounts with Host Gator.. hosting a large number of my domains with them. Now that they have grown to the hugely successful business they are.. hosting something like 5+ million domains.. I doubt Brent is still giving clients his personal cell phone number 🙂
Host Gator is a full service web hosting provider.. offering shared hosting, reseller hosting and dedicated hosting solutions for personal use as well as for their business clients and Fortune 500 companies as well.
The Host Gator support team is available 24/7 via e-mail, instant message, live chat and telephone. Additionally.. they offer a support forum which is always accessible to their clients.
Whether you are looking to host one website.. or 101 websites you could certainly never go wrong with Host Gator
Another of My Favorite Web Hosts
Since I earn my living online and have multiple websites.. I like to utilize more than one web host.. and normally have more than one account with each host.. giving me a variety of IP’s on a variety of different C classes.
If you are still somewhat new to websites and web hosting.. this may sound a bit confusing to you right now. It will all begin to make more sense once you have gained some experience.
Basically.. when you have multiple websites you do not want them all hosted on the same IP or with the same web host.. particularly if you will be linking the sites to each other.
Links from other websites is an important part of SEO (search engine optimization). If all of your sites are hosted on the same IP address it alerts the search engines to the fact that the sites are more than likely owned by the same person. Linking these sites to each other would make the back links virtually useless.
However.. SEO is a whole different subject.. so for now let’s get back to the subject of hosting.
BlueHost is another full service web hosting provider.. offering shared hosting, virtual dedicated hosting and dedicated hosting solutions.
All plans include website stats, autoresponder, Google® webmaster tools, Free $100 Google® AdWords® credit, Free $50 Facebook® Ad Credits, Fotolia® Photo Credits and much more.
Also included.. free setup and free software.. dozens of free add-on applications with one click installation.. including WordPress, Joomla, Drupal, Zen Cart and more.
The BlueHost support team provides 24/7 phone, e-mail and web support and can even help you with getting traffic to your new website.
Check out my complete BlueHost review and even get some promo codes here s3.amazonaws.com/bluehost-promo-coupon/index.html and compare pricing and plans.
Hostgator’s name and logo comes from the idea that they would “eat up” the competition. Do they really? Well, they consistently make Internet lists of the Top 10 web hosts and have a 4 of 5-star rating on Consumer-Rankings.com. They’re a relatively new hosting company that was founded by a student at Florida Atlantic University (Gator territory?) and moved out to Houston, Texas. Hostgator is good for small or medium-sized businesses who aim to establish an online business.
GoDaddy is the largest web hosting company and also the one that offers the most supplemental services. The control panel is easy to use for first-time webmasters though it can mean an adjustment for people used to cPanel or vDeck. They are pricier than the bargain hosting companies but competitive compared to more well-known sites like Hostgator. Some of the “extras” can be useful depending on your needs, like eCommerce shopping cart functionality, extra e-mail accounts or help with SEO. If you don’t want to buy extra domain names or services, just breeze by these pages without selecting any options when going through checkout.
iPage offers some excellent bargains and plenty of features for bloggers and small business owners. For slightly over a decade, it lingered as a relatively unknown hosting company while it focused on improving its services and is now a leader in hosting for small businesses. It saves having to make a choice about hosting plans by offering only one plan, the “essential plan,” for rates as low as $3.50 a month. Be aware of extra services available at checkout, some of which will be checked automatically and you’ll have to uncheck them if you don’t want them.
MyHosting is one of the few companies that offers a 100% uptime guarantee. Most will say “99.9% uptime”. They have an interesting and informative blog that can help first-time webmasters get started and include entries like “The Most Infamous Computer Hacks and Hackers in History.” Take advantage of Hyper-V Virtual Servers, Linux servers, 24/7 monitoring and credits for Google, Bing and Yahoo advertising.
JustHost is designed for beginning webmasters who are looking for an intuitive interface for their first website. They don’t offer a ton of extras, but then, you probably find those extras bewildering when you’re just starting out. Their customer service is very good at answering questions from novices and newcomers like the uncomplicated design. They offer a single plan costing as low as $4.45 a month for a 48-month plan.
Dreamhost is kind of funky and fun as a business. The newsletters are, shall we say, “different”. There are real people at Dreamhost, just like the rest of us, and they do admit to making little errors from time to time. But behind that sense of humor there is a lot of web hosting professionalism.
Like the newsletters, some aspects of the hosting are a little quirky.
First, Dreamhost does not use cPanel as the user interface. They have their own interface. That puts some people off right away. That, in my view, is a mistaken viewpoint.
My websites are hosted in several places, including some using cPanel. They all work fine. It took me an hour or two to get used to the Dreamhost panel, but now going back to it from a cPanel host is a little like coming home – it just feels more comfortable, especially in the way it copes with multiple domain hosting. In my view, cPanel was not designed with multiple domain hosting in mind – it works, but is not as elegant a solution as the custom panel at Dreamhost.
Secondly, if your applications use fopen functions in php you will need to modify your code to use cURL to draw down external data instead. Dreamhost disables fopen for security reasons. I believe that is a good risk management thing to do on shared hosting, but for some older applications this can be a hassle if you are not a programmer able to do the modifications. Most recent php applications appear to have cURL built in to work fine on Dreamhost.
Thirdly, Dreamhost occasionally has had outages. In my experience over a couple of years they have been rare, but Dreamhost has a lot of users and a high profile, so the topic gets some air time. The thing is, each of my other hosts has had a similar level of downtime. In my view, if you need 100% uninterrupted uptime you must be on a dedicated server with backups. You should not be using shared server hosting. Sure, that solution is costly. It comes down to economics and the nature of your website. In my experience, Dreamhost is no better or worse than other shared server hosts for downtime, and it is a relatively rare issue in practice that hardly warrants much debate.
Each web host has unique issues. Taken overall, Dreamhost stacks up as very good value for money.