Many people have issues with picking the right hosting, most suitable to their needs, and often opt for the cheapest available option.
This short guide is here to help and will explain what exactly hosting is, what solutions are available to you and what option is best for you!
What is hosting?
In short, hosting is where website files are located and can be accessed online. Single hosting is identified by an IP address, which is a string of numbers i.e. 184.108.40.206. However, due to IP addresses being hard to remember, domain names are used and they act as signposts providing directions towards the hosting.
Step 1: Learn about your Website and Who Visits it
The first step is to workout what size your website is. You need to:
- Identify which system was used to build the website, i.e. WordPress, Magento, OpenCart or Bespoke Software.
- Figure out how many megabytes the homepage is.
- Work out how much media content is on the website.
- Identify how many visitors, to the website, are expected daily.
The larger the website the better a hosting site is needed to ensure that your website runs well.
Step 2: Doing the Research and Making the Right Choice
The second step is to consider what choices are available to you and decide which option best suits your needs.
As you read this think about whether each choice could accommodate the growing needs of your business. Bear in mind that relocating hosting can take a considerable length of time and that your website will be offline, and completely inaccessible, until it is finished.
Shared hosting is a cheap option and each server is being usually used by between 200-300 different accounts, although this can sometimes be as many as 1000. For the majority of websites, which are very small, shared hosting is a very good option. However, it is worth considering that shared hosting providers restrict how many separate individuals can access your site at one time, usually between 18 and 25. If more than this number try to access your site at one and the same time your website may appear as being offline, and unaccessible.
A virtual server accommodates for those with larger requirements. Like shared hosting a virtual server will have more than one account to each server but this number is considerably less, generally less than 10 accounts to each server.
Unfortunately, for us, it is difficult to provide you an estimate as to how many can visit your site using a virtual server because there is much variation between providers.
A dedicated server, as it’s name suggests, has only one account per server and is a high end solution. However, we advise that you hire someone to manage this server for you if you are unable to do this yourself.
Once again, it is difficult to estimate exactly how many visitors a server can handle. However, for the sake of argument, let’s assume that a server has 100mb of internet connection (that’s 100mb available for use each and every second) and that your website uses only 1mb per second, your site could cope with up to 8,640,000 visitors each day!
But, If you think that Dedicated Server doesn’t offer enough power for your project then you might want to get two or more Dedicated Servers.
Step 3: Finding a Hosting Provider
Now that you know about your website and what you require its time to find a provider to complete this vital task for you unless, of course, you can do this yourself!
If you have already have technical support ask who they recommend and whether they might oversee the completion of this task for you. However, if this is not an option for you we fully recommend that you consider either ‘Dreamhost’ or ‘1and1’.