Hosting Company provides a web space as a home for the website's web pages. There are mainly six types of hosting web space: Share Hosting, Cloud Hosting, VPS Hosting, Dedicated Server Hosting, Managed Hosting and Reseller Hosting. There are Windows Server and Apache Server for those hosting spaces. Normally, Apache web space is cheaper.
- Share Hosting: The resources such as RAM and CPU are split amongst web spaces on a single server.
- Cloud Hosting: Your web space is on multiple synced servers all sharing resources.
- VPS Hosting: The resources are dedicated to your web space.
- Dedicated Server Hosting: Your web space is in a single computer/server.
- Managed Hosting: Hosting company has IT staffs who manage the system on your behalf. It is more look like a solution for t to maximizing your website's uptime and reliability.
- Reseller Hosting: Hosting company offers other company to resell its services for a profit.
Share Hosting is the cheapest hosting type for a particular server type. Share Hosting can be Linux Apache Server or Windows Server. Linux Apache Share Hosting is the cheapest hosting type.
Website Hosting Features
There are several key features of hosting plans: No of Website, Storage, Bandwidth, Email Mailboxes, SMTP/POP/IMAP/Webmail, FTP, ASP.NET/PHP, MySQL/MSSQL.
- No of Website: The number of different web spaces for different websites with different domain names.
- Storage: It is the amount of room on a server available to store your website content, for example, text, images, code, databases, etc. Storage can be from 50MB to unlimited. If the website does not have video and a lot of images, 100MB can be enough.
- Bandwidth: It is the total amount of data which all the internet users download from or upload data to the website server. You probably want at least 1GB data. Some plans offer more or even unlimited data.
- Email Mailboxes: They are the email addresses that receive email messages and store them on the server. It can be from one to unlimited mailboxes. You probably want at least 1 email mailbox.
- Webmail: Once you have set up the email mailbox, you can go to the particular web page of the hosting website. You enter the email address and a password and you can check or send emails. It is similar to Yahoo Mail or Google Gmail.
- SMTP and POP or IMAP: If you are using third party software such as Microsoft Outlook to send or receive emails, the third party software will need those information to set up the email address. Usually, it requires the SMTP and POP or IMAP servers’ addresses and the assigned ports.
- FTP: It is how you put the website web pages to the hosting server. You need third party software to do the transfer files to the server by FTP protocol. The third party software will require the FTP server address and the assigned port number. Some hosting companies plans have features which you can do the file transfer to the servers without third party software. Yet, usually the transfer speed is much slower.
- SSL: Many hosting companies offer plans with free SSL. If the hosting company offers free SSL, it is mostly likely from Linux Apache server. Other hosting companies consider SSL as optional. In this case, it will be additional costs per year.
- ASP.NET or PHP: It is for server programming. Microsoft Windows server has both ASP.NET and PHP programming tools. Linux Apache server has PHP programming tools. Normally, Linux Apache web space is cheaper. If the designed website has server programming, you will need to consider it. If not, you can ignore it.
- MySQL or MSSQL: They are database management systems. Microsoft Windows server has both MySQL and MSSQL database systems. Linux Apache server has MySQL database system. If your website is e-commerce website or requires data warehousing, you will need to consider it. If not, you can ignore it.
Hosting companies may not have all the hosting types especially the small hosting companies. They usually provide the Linux Apache Share Hosting or Cloud Hosting services. Some provide Microsoft Windows Share Hosting or Cloud Hosting services. Within the type of hosting, they usually offer different hosting plans: Basic Plan, Premium Plan and Business Plan. Below are imaginary hosting plans and they just give you some idea only.
- Basic Plan: Its features offer less extent. For example, $1.99 per month and you will need to prepay a year. It is just introductory price and after that it will go up significantly. Maybe 1 Website, 1 G storage, 10 G Bandwidth, 1 Mailbox, 1 FTP Account and 1 Mysql database with 25 MB.
- Premium Plan: Its features offer more compared with Basic Plan. For example, introductory $3.99 per month for prepaying a year. Usually, there are options of prepay period and it can be one and two dollar more if you prepay 6 month or 3 month period. For features, maybe 1 Website, 10 G storage, 100 G Bandwidth, 5 Mailbox, 5 FTP Account and 5 Mysql database (Each database may have more capacity.
- Business Plan: Its features offer the most. For example, introductory $5.99 per month for prepaying a year. Usually, there are option of prepay period and it can be one and two dollar more if you prepay 6 month or 3 month period. For features, maybe 3 Websites, 100 G storage, Unlimited or Unmetered G Bandwidth, 10 Mailbox, 10 FTP Account and 10 Mysql database.
Purchase A Hosting Plan
First of all, you have to decide the type of website you want and you should talk to your website designer or web design company. Your website can be for the Blog, Online and E-commerce Stores, Online Photo Portfolios, Individual or Small Company Websites, and Mid-sized or Large Business Websites. You can go to any of the hosting company website and select the plan and follow the instruction to make a purchase.
After you signed up a prepaid plan, you will be assigned an account for the hosting space with a login ID and password. They will also send you emails with the FTP ID and password and Primary and Secondary Nameservers. Your website developer needs the FTP ID and password to upload the website web pages to the hosting web space. You logon the Domain Name Registrar
website and set the Primary and Secondary Nameservers provided by the hosting company. Within 72 hours, you website goes alive. Every time, you switch hosting company, you will have to set the Nameservers.
WebDesignMonsters.com's Website for $100 promotion can do the website on the cheapest plan if you do not have any special requirement or effects.
Occasionally, the server is down or there may be some technically server issues. You need to contact the hosting company. You can call them directly if they have support telephone number. They may be able to fix it right the way. You may also chat online on their website.
If it is a difficult technical issue or they don't have a support telephone number or chat, you will have to file a trouble ticket. When you signup the hosting service, their welcome email should have Trouble Ticket support account with a URL web address, account ID and password. After you file a ticket, they will send an email once the issue is fixed.
Choose Website Hosting Company
There are several factors for choosing Website Hosting Company.
- Uptime Reliability: Many web hosts promise 99.9% uptime.
- Cheapest Hosting Plan: Is it an introductory rate? How much it is after the initial period? Website designer or developer will charge for the switching of the website hosting company.
- Company Founded: How old is the company. Will it go out of business?
- Domains Hosted: How many websites does it currently host?
- 24×7 Phone Support: Not all of them have phone support. There are other forms of communications. Phone support is an added value.
- Money-Back Guarantee: Does it have 30 days money back Guarantee? Suppose you don't need website server programming in the beginning. However, you find that you do need it when the website has been being created. You may need to change hosting company.