What is a web hosting service and hints to get the best one
Web hosting service is an internet service provided by hosting providers aiming at making web content of the users accessible online.
The services mentioned below are definitely the top four hosting services:
- shared web hosting;
- VPS hosting;
- dedicated server hosting;
- domain name registration.
There is a number of others internet activities and services that different organizations are ready to offer. For example, cloud technology rocks nowadays, but not all hosting providers deliver that.
Web hosting services in details
Shared web hosting is the one you have already heard of, and it costs near to nothing. However, it is quite simple, but mighty tool to get a website online with just a few clicks.
VPS hosting is almost like hosting a real physical server. You get guaranteed resources and complete access to tweak and tune the system exactly the way you need it to be. The price is higher than for a shared hosting, but it’s still quite affordable both for small business and for private persons as well.
Dedicated server is utterly vigorous and fully customizable solution, hence you will have to pay some extra money compared to other services. With no sub-users or software limitations, it can perfectly fit whatever goal you’re up to. Just pick the hardware you need and get full access to install software and tune the system.
Domain registration often comes along with shared hosting plans, but it’s an independent service that helps to get a website online. Many providers use free domain registration to attract new clients.
How to find the best web hosting services?
Deciding on which service fits your requirements and your budget most is only the beginning. The next thing you will face is finding a hoster that can deliver a service of high quality and for an acceptable price. A good idea is to find a few companies and compare their offers. Pay attention to the following key points:
- uptime is a complex parameter that generally can be used to evaluate quality of the services offered by a hosting provider. Basically, it’s a time frame when your server is constantly available online, without any breakdowns or emergency maintenances carried out by your hoster during a given period of time.
- hardware is one of the main aspects that is of a great importance to how your online project will be functioning. Whether you’re using a dedicated server or just a shared hosting, it’s the hardware that provides needed resources to your applications.
- SLA (stands for Service Level Agreement) – normally, there is some basic level included in all services by default. Nowadays, most providers have 24/7 online customer support and different ways to contact them. Any issues with your service can be solved by qualified personnel within a reasonable amount of time. However, if your project doesn’t tolerate a smallest breakdown or unavailability, then it’s a good idea to ask for a premium service level from your hosting provider.
- connectivity and locations - latency is often a major point for online services, and choosing the nearest location to the internet users of your project can play an important role in winning your customers. Lots of providers have more than a few points of presence in different parts of the globe, like the UK and the USA, or Asia.
- additional features are some extra services that you can get free of charge. It can be software tools, DDOS protection or one-year registration of the domain name. Most web hosting providers have different discounts depending on the prepaid amount.
Consider the options given above to get a decent hosting company providing web hosting services that will satisfy needs of your project. Don’t rush at once for cheap web hosting services, because usually, it’s not what it seems to be. Before making an order, try to compare what you can get for the same money from different companies.
Choosing a website hosting service that fits you best
To be more specific, let’s look closer into choosing the best shared hosting solution. There are few things you should be aware of while making your choice:
- resources – estimate HDD volume and bandwidth that your online project requires, and take some boost coefficient to be on the safe side. Once you have your numbers check out what your favorite hosting providers offer and compare prices, limitations (see below) and extra features. Speaking about resources, it’s also worthwhile to ask what hardware is used for shared hosting nodes. Obsolete hardware can spare a few dollars from a start, but it won’t take you far.
- control panel is a very useful tool that can help you to manage your website with a touch of a button. Sometimes, it’s not transparent whether some control panel is included in your tariff plan by default or offered for an extra fee. It’s better to find that out before making a deal.
- easy-to-install software is a bunch of free popular software that comes with every shared hosting plan. Nevertheless, better check twice to save your time on downloading and installing your favorite applications.
- backups – there are two kinds of people: those, who have already lost their data once, and the lucky ones, who are only about to loose it. Making regular copies of your files is the only way to deal with all kinds of unpredictable data corruption issues. Feel free to inquire about automatic backups and what it takes to make them on your own.
- limitations – sharing common environment with other users requires some activities to be prohibited or limited to grant normal operation for all users at the same time. It’s better to get information about restrictions, especially if your project is much more than just a one-page website.
There are definitely a lot of other things you probably should take into account to make a decision. But, we believe that the key points listed above can give you the minimum required information to find a qualitative hosting service for a reasonable price!