Everything You Need to Know About Web Hosting: What Is It and How to Choose One
What Is Web Hosting?
Web hosting is the place where all the files of your website live. It allows you to store content offsite, reducing local storage costs and the associated physical footprint. Besides that, it also makes it easier to build a genuinely durable web presence, with built-in advantages like back-ups for security and support. With this, you can make a website that is presentable via the World Wide Web.
A hosting provider will provide a place on a webserver to store all of your files and are responsible for delivering the files of your website as soon as a browser makes a request by typing in your domain name. When you pay for hosting services, you are simply renting storage space on the internet — just like you would rent a physical store for your business.
You can either choose between a self-hosting website or managed website. If you go with the self-hosting one, it means you have to handle everything about building websites. Therefore, it will cost higher and need more manpower compared to a dedicated facility and provider. That’s why you can just go with the managed website on a web hosting provider that can guarantee certain features and services on a 24/7 basis.
What Are The Components of Web Hosting?
Before choosing which web hosting is suitable for you, you need to understand the core components that build web hosting. Here are the crucial components that are often mentioned in every hosting plan:
Storage & RAM
Building a website requires disk space to store all of your content, including images, videos, HTML, and more. If you plan to keep a lot of content then you should evaluate the storage required along before purchasing a web hosting plan. Usually, each plan varies from the number of disk spaces it offers.
It’s better to choose an SSD (Solid-state drives) storage as it’s much faster and more reliable, but they come at a higher price. As for RAM in web hosting serves a similar purpose: quickly processing stored data. The number of RAM determine your page load times.
The size of bandwidth or data transfer you need for your website is important because it’s impacting your site performance and how quickly visitors can access your site’s information — the higher the bandwidth, the higher number of people who can view your site at the same time.
If you have lots of rich media files like videos, audio, and photos on your website, then you need a hosting plan that has more data transfer capacity for your website. You should keep a check on the bandwidth consumption by your website or application and the charges and provisions your web hosting service provider can give when you exceed your bandwidth package.
Exclusively for the VPS or dedicated server hosting, which computes the processing speed of the server, you can choose the processor and its speed that’s suitable for your website. Unlike shared hosting, VPS and dedicated server hostings allow you to compute the processing speed of the server.
Web hostings usually provide a specific number of business accounts for free for you to use. The email accounts are associated with your domain. You should get IMAP, POP, and e-mail forwarding options available with your domain email accounts. All the necessary settings required should be configured along with incoming and outgoing email limits appropriately defined.
Server uptime is a crucial thing as it is essential to make sure your website is always ready to welcome visitors or customers with good performance. You should choose a web hosting service that offers you at least 99.5%-99.995% guaranteed uptime SLA (Service level agreement).
In case your service provider does not comply with the stated uptime clauses as per the SLA then he must ensure that you are compensated as per the downtime.
Backups are the primary core components of any web hosting package. With this service, you can save important data from your website to avoid upcoming disasters. You should ensure your web hosting offers the backup service with your desired frequency: hourly/ daily/ weekly/ bi-weekly/ Monthly/ Yearly.
Control Panel acts as a backbone in managing the server for you. It helps in maintaining your hosting account through a UI-based interface. This is easy to use and very helpful in managing the basic operations of your server. You can assign the rights to the server users as per the requirements they have like Administrator, Manager, and many more.
To avoid any difficulties or confusion when building your website, make sure your web hosting provider has excellent and proactive customer support 24/7. If you are not technically sound in managing the server from the backend, then good customer support is a must for you. Before finalizing a web hosting service provider, you should check the support services available to them by email, ticket, chat, or phone.
What Are The Types of Web Hosting?
There are at least 5 types of web hosting services:
It is the common and economical option when it’s the first time you create a website. Shared hosting services manage multiple clients from the same server system. Therefore, you will get a cheaper cost with the basic features needed for your website. The downside is there’s more of an opportunity for disruption because the server’s resources are distributed between multiple users.
Virtual Private Servers (VPS)
Virtual private server (VPS) hosting is similar to shared hosting, but your files are stored in a dedicated space with dedicated resources. Therefore, it can be a solution to reduce the risk of server crashes but this also comes along with a higher cost as well.
Dedicated server hosting is similar to VPS hosting as you also get a server all to yourself. In addition to that, it provides you with software & hardware customization, full control of your website, and unlimited resources. Therefore, it has a rather higher price than the VPS.
Managed hosting is suitable for you who have access to a dedicated server, but don’t want to deal with the administrative options. With this hosting, you can leave security and maintenance responsibilities to your provider, leaving you to manage content via FTP (File Transfer Protocol), the rules that networked computers use when they “talk” to each other.
Cloud hosting is web hosting that uses resource sharing and scale to drive down costs and reduce the risk of noticeable service disruptions. It has more advantages in terms of features scalability and cost flexibility. Therefore, it can be more affordable compared to other options, but make sure you understand how your plan’s pricing works before committing to one. Read more about cloud hosting here.
How to Choose a Web Hosting?
To help you choose the most suitable web hosting for your website, there are 5 tips to consider before choosing a web hosting:
Know which type of hosting you need
Before start looking for the best web hosting providers, you must know what types of hosting are needed to build your website.
Shared hosting is suitable for personal or small to medium sites. VPS offers more flexibility to follow your website growth. Dedicated hosting offers maximum server resources and security. While cloud hosting offers great flexibility through the clouds.
Define what type of site you’re building
Websites with different purposes need different hostings too. If you’re building an online store website then you should choose web hosting that offers e-commerce features. Meanwhile, if you just want to create a personal blog then a regular WordPress is enough. Besides that, you can use a website builder to build an online portfolio or resume site.
Confirm what features & resources you want
Instead of choosing a web hosting plan that offers the most features for the fewest dollars, you can find one that is compatible with your specific needs. As mention in the What Are the Components of Web Hosting above, you can now decide what features & resources you want. Businesses might prioritize email functionality over storage, for example, while a developer might prefer high bandwidth rates and stringent security.
Understand how web hosting pricing works
Costs must be a big factor when choosing web hosting, however, don’t sacrifice support and performance. Also, don’t forget to budget for services such as domain name registration and any themes or plugins you might need to add. Hosting itself can cost as little as a few bucks per month, and most providers will give you a discount for signing up for a year or longer.
Choose a host that could follow your growth
Some of the more budget-driven web hosts concentrate solely on shared hosting, meaning you’ll have to part ways and take your chances out in the hosting dating pool when you’re ready to move forward with VPS or dedicated services.
Top 10 Web Hosting
There are many providers that offer various web hosting services. We have review the Top 10 Best Web Hosting to help you find your suitable web hosting.
Top 5 Best Control Panel for Cloud Hosting
As mention above, Control Panel is one of the major components in web hosting. However, most cloud hosting providers do not offer a user-friendly control panel. Therefore, we have compiled the Top 5 Control Panel for your cloud server website.
SpinupWP – Best UI interface & useful features
SpinupWP is a powerful control panel for cloud-based servers (cloud hosting) by Delicious Brains. It’s specifically designed to run on WordPress.
This control panel might be the best in UI interface and has great features to give you a better user experience while running your cloud server website with a control panel from SpinupWP.
GridPane – Most popular cloud hosting’s control panel for professionals
GridPane is the first hosting control panel build exclusively for professionals. Similar to SpinupWP, GridPane also can run on WordPress and other cloud providers. It also offers great features and integrations to other apps. However, it costs higher as you can have limitless servers and websites.
RunCloud – Powerful cloud hosting control panel for any PHP softwares
Unlike GridPane and SpinupWP that are completely for WordPress websites, RunCloud runs well with any PHP software, even though it does have WordPress-specific equipment, like a WordPress plugin that is helping you arrange cache purging, exclusions, and so on. Generally, RunCloud’s pricing is the cheapest choice if you want to make use of greater than 3 servers.
ServerPilot – Cost-effective cloud hosting control panel
ServerPilot is one of the older cloud web hostings that offers a control panel for WordPress that makes use of a combo of Apache and Nginx for its tech stack. Even though it doesn’t offer a user-friendly UI compared to SpinupWP and GridPane, ServerPilot may be a little bit extra barebones in its options. It offers a cloning feature and no devoted third-party backup like the entire different equipment be offering.
Cloudways – Simplest control panel for cloud hosting
Cloudways offers a simple control panel with no learning curve. It’s the most beginner-friendly control panel to use. With this, you can manage your cloud server with 1-click simplicity and suitable for you who don’t want root get right of entry to.
Web hosting is a solution for you who want to create websites where you can get more storage and other web-related services from web hosting providers. There are many things that you need to consider before choosing one. You need to understand what components are required in your website, what types of websites you build, and many more. You can read our review of the Top 10 Best Web Hosting Providers to help you find the suitable one.
For a special case in cloud hosting, where usually there is no user-friendly control panel, we have reviewed the best 5 control panel if you have a website running on cloud hosting.