So you want to publish a web site do you? Welcome to the club. Today it appears that just about everyone includes a web site of some sort, and thousands more continue being launched every day. It’s challenging enough to create a site and fill it with interesting content, nevertheless when all is said and done another challenge still remains – where you should host it?
A favorite choice for newbie webmasters, and even experienced ones, is to secure a free hosting plan with a business such as for instance Yahoo! Geocities, Tripod or Angelfire. While they’re easy to setup and free of charge, they do have limitations. Most free hosts don’t offer all the nice features that paid hosts do such as for instance FTP access, CGI-BIN, or your personal personal domain name. Instead you’re stuck with minimal features and a general URL such as for instance [http://www.freewebhost.com/marcswebsite]. This somewhat limits your web site‘s potential. Most free hosts also need you to run banners or pop-up ads on your own web site to make it worth their while – these banners and pop-ups can obstruct the view of one’s web page and ultimately annoy visitors and drive them away. Lastly, most free hosts have a regular bandwidth limit that is very small, so should you get lots of traffic you’ll most likely exceed the allotted bandwidth and your site will be temporarily disabled. Overall I’d recommend free web hosts for people which are a new comer to web hosting and would like to get a feel for how it works. I’d also recommend them for web sites which are personal in nature (such being an online journal) along with web sites that don’t want to generate any revenue. Free web hosts are a great stepping stone to paid web hosts – I myself starting building web sites 4 years back using free hosts , and today I run several high traffic web sites which are hosted on paid web hosting plans.
Now it’s time to find yourself in the nice stuff – paid web hosting. Web hosting firms that charge money because of their services are plentiful on the Internet, and feature a wide array of hosting packages at various price points. First we start with so called “budget” web hosts website hosting who claim to give you the planet for only $1 per month. Having used numerous such companies I’m I must inform you to proceed with caution here, as these companies aren’t all they are cracked up to be. Many claim to offer 24/7 e-mail support, which within my experience turned out to be 0/0 e-mail support. My e-mails were either never answered or answered per week after I sent them. Even when I got an answer it had been generic in nature and completely unhelpful. Also, expect frequent outages with your budget web hosts as they rarely have their particular web servers – often they are reselling space on someone else’s web servers over which they have no control. One budget web host I used transpired unexpectedly for 6 days, and they didn‘t even bother to notify their customers. As a result, my web site was down for 6 days and I lost most of my visitors along with my hard-earned search engine rankings. Lesson learned: if the reliability and success of one’s web site is important to you, budget web hosting mightn’t function as answer. However, this really is not saying that all budget web hosts are bad – 1dollarhosting.com is among the leaders in the budget web hosting arena and has quite a good reputation.
Another kind of paid web host is what I make reference to as a “mid-range” web host , and thus they provide prices and service that may satisfy nearly all web sites out there. Mid-range web hosts like PowWeb, Your-Site.com and iPowerWeb offer packages which range from $5 to $8 per month and provide the tools that most webmasters should run a web site , such as for instance: CGI-BIN, tons of e-mail addresses, FTP support, visitor statistics and more. These hosts do have monthly bandwidth limits, however the limits can be high , and most web sites will never reach them. However, if your web site features a huge selection of file downloads and gets decent traffic you might be shocked at how soon you’ll reach those bandwidth limits. Whenever you do, your site may be temporarily power down or you’ll have to pay for bandwidth overage charges, that may get pricey. Overall though, mid-range web hosts will be satisfactory for 90% of the web sites out there, and generally offer excellent uptime/reliability. In fact, many web-based businesses are successfully run utilizing a mid-range web host. However, as previously mentioned previously, web sites offering large files for download or sites that get a large number of traffic could find that a mid-range host doesn’t quite suit their needs. These kinds of web sites may require “high-end” web hosting solutions, the following topic within our discussion.
High-end web hosts typically service web sites which are extremely popular, have a high number of traffic, and/or require pretty much 100% uptime. Most businesses depend on high-end web hosts to host their web sites. Rackspace.com is a good example of a favorite high-end web hosting company. Pricing for high-end hosts varies, but typically runs from about $50 per month to several hundred dollars per month. Many high-end hosts give you your personal dedicated server (which they support) that is reserved just for you and your web site. The mid-range hosts I discussed earlier typically host a variety of web sites for a passing fancy server – this is called “shared” hosting. High-end web hosts offer stellar reliability, bandwidth, and just about every tool you’ll ever need to perform a successful web site. Another feature that some high-end web hosts provide is “co-location” hosting. In this scenario, YOU configure and provide the web server, but you can plug it to their data center/network. This can be quite nice because their data center usually has a fiber-optic connection right to the Internet, offering blazing bandwidth and stellar reliability. People who run web-based businesses or extremely popular, high traffic web sites are good candidates for high-end web hosting.
Hopefully this brief overview offers you a good picture of the different types of web hosts that exist, and which might be right for you. Whenever you begin your visit a web host , always keep in mind the old adage “You get what you pay for” because it surely does hold true in this case. Before you make the commitment to host a web site make sure to take a moment and analyze what you need from the web site , and decide which factors are most important to its success. Answering these questions can get you many steps closer to choosing the web host that’s right for you.