A simple web search for hosting providers can be overwhelming- pages and pages of options. Which one is right for you? Is it even in your budget? How would you get your site moved there? How is their service?
Of the millions of results, you will see free web hosting, shared hosting, dedicated server, cloud hosting, and the list goes on. Each one of these options serve the same purpose, which is providing a place for your content so that it can be viewed and accessed by people on the Internet. The major difference between these options is how each is structured as well as the benefits they offer.
Let’s take a closer look at each of them.
FREE WEB HOSTING
What could be better than a free web hosting plan? This is a good option for a person wanting to create a homepage or small website to share with friends and family. Free web hosting typically has limited features, security, and support, and has received criticism for downtime and lack of support. A few more reliable providers to exist- however, keep in mind that free web hosting is more geared to providing the user a taste of other services the host might provide. If your goal is to establish a strong web presence with an online business, you will need to consider a reliable paid hosting service that offers more control, security and reliability.
As the name implies, shared hosting is a platform where users are sharing space on a web server with a large number of other users. This is the most common form of hosting, especially when looking at the least expensive options. Since the cost of the server is shared among many clients, the cost stays low. This is a very popular platform for personal users and businesses just wanting to get a page on the internet. However, when hosting on a shared server, you are exposed to all the activities of your neighbors. If someone makes a coding error, the entire server can suffer. Also, since the server resources are all shared, if someone experiences a sudden burst in traffic, the entire server runs slower and your site would be affected. Ultimately, if the server goes down, so does your website, along with everyone else.
When your business is taking off and requires more than the typical sharing server resources, it’s time to move up to a dedicated server. Now you’re in the big leagues with an entire server dedicated to your hosting needs. However, without any experience, succeeding with this hosting option is nearly impossible – those who require a dedicated server but don’t know a lot about server administration can choose fully managed hosting. In this scenario, the hosting service provider handles all the management tasks which frees you up to focus on other areas of the business. Keep in mind that a managed service is generally more costly, but can be well worth it to have a full-time monitor of the server.
Cloud services are quite the buzz-word lately. What does it mean? It means your site can be on an array of servers located in various places. They provide speed, reliability, and scalability. Cloud systems are best suited for large or Enterprise website requirements, but some providers have scaled this down for smaller websites. However- just because a provider mentions cloud services, it doesn’t mean they actually provide true cloud services!
WHAT IS THE BEST HOSTING FOR YOU?
The best advice we can give about hosting is to know what you’re getting into, and to ask questions. Free services are geared for personal sites not concerned with speed or security, shared hosting can be suited for small businesses and a dedicated server is designed for larger hosting needs, yet is far more expensive. Cloud hosting may be an option for you but make sure you ask questions about their platform. By knowing what your site requires, it will be much easier to determine which is the best solution.
TechnicalRx can provide the solutions your business needs, regardless of size. We can help you scale your business and keep your site secure, from shared systems to full Enterprise cloud environments. Call us today for more information.