Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Finding Great Web Hosting - What to Look For

Choosing a web hosting service is a big decision. You put a lot of time and effort into your website and it is important that your site be up and running as often as possible. There are so many different web hosts that it can be difficult to narrow the selection and choose the right one for your website. Once you choose a company you will also have to choose a service package. Web hosts often offer a wide variety of different packages each with different service options. You can often get a free sponsored personal page, a basic package with limited options and a relatively low cost or a more advanced professional package.

If you aren't familiar with web hosting packages you may be wondering what exactly web hosting is and why you might need it. Basically web hosting is how you get your web page to the world. A hosting company will store your site on their servers and make it available for site visitors from around the world. You will rent a certain amount of space on the server's hosts.

If you are looking to host a personal website you can probably do just fine by having a small single page hosting package. These tend to be very affordable and will meet most basic needs. However if you have a complex page or if you will be needing additional support or options it may be worth investing additional money and getting a more advanced hosting package... Generally more advanced packages allow a wider variety of web scripts to run which will give you as the site administrator additional functionality.

If you have a business site you will have to do additional figuring to determine the scope of the web hosting package that you will need. Think about the size of the site that you intend to create as well as the overall purposes behind the site. Businesses often have very complex hosting needs and finding an ideal package is critical to being able to create a website that will meet your company needs. You also need to consider things like email, e-commerce and more.

You should also know that having a web hosting package is not the same as managing your own web hosting needs. You are essentially renting a space on their servers, and do not have full administrative privileges. As you look at packages you will find managed and unmanaged packages. If you choose a managed plan you will have less administrative responsibility and will not have to worry about the maintenance of the site or security. On the other hand if you choose an unmanaged package you will have increased maintenance responsibility. While these unmanaged packages do cost less than the managed packages they do require a lot more work, especially when it comes to maintenance and keeping your website secure.

Another option that you have is to acquire a collocation package. This allows you to purchase actual space on the server and then pay a small fee for maintenance and upkeep of the site. This is very expensive but will provide you with wonderful hosting speed, convenience and power. You can also look into cloud hosting which is only starting to gain in popularity and may continue to do so. This type of hosting basically offers users an opportunity to pay as you go and to only pay for the services that are in use. You will basically pay a usage charge similar to what you pay for your electric or gas bill. One reason that cloud hosting is so popular is that it allows you to pay for what you use and not spend your money on hosting services that you do not need.

If you have a website or are hoping to get one you need to spend some time learning more about the various web hosting options and to choose the proper hosting package for your needs. If you need hosting you will have many different options to consider and it is important to really weigh the pros and cons of each so that you can find the package that best meets your needs.

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