Hosting your website is not a standalone process. Before you decide to host your website, you need to consider various factors so that you can build a robust website and efficiently host it. If it is your first time in the world of website development and you want to know about hosting your website, this article will help you.
There are many determining factors for choosing web hosting which may include your technical experience, the type of website you want to host, what hosting plan you wish to opt for, and your website/business size. But these are not the only factors. In this article, we will discuss all aspects in detail and how you can host your website.
Hosting a website specifies its online presence so that users can access it over the Internet using browsers.
What is Web Hosting
Hosting a website means that you are creating a space for your website on the Internet. All the files and documents necessary for the website are stored on the server. These files and documents can be accessed by the users visiting that website. Web hosting allows users worldwide to access the website with some installed software on the servers, known as web servers.
Every website requires a web hosting provider that rents out or sells the space for your website with many benefits to your business. Today, most big companies use third-party hosting to host their websites, whether it’s Netflix or PayPal.
Significant companies providing web hosting services are Amazon, GoDaddy, Google, etc. with enough technical and financial support to carry out a huge task.
Understanding the Functioning of Web Hosting
The web server will receive the incoming request to the website and send back the response to the browser with the details required by that user.
Well, you do not need to get into all technical terms here while hosting your website. You can find various companies that will handle your website along with offering many services, allowing you to focus more on your business rather than managing your website.
How to Host a Website Using a Hosting provider
You can host a website with the help of web host providers. You can subscribe to their services for some amount and leverage their benefits till your plan expires. It will include the below steps to host a website with host providers:
- Deciding the type of website.
- Decide the type of web hosting.
- Choose the right host providers.
- Domain registration.
- Moving your website to the designated server.
Advantages of Using a Hosting Provider
- Usually, it is a cheap option as a hosting provider can manage all the services.
- Technical support is readily available to resolve your website issues.
- You do not have to worry about installing expensive hardware at your disposal.
- High reliability.
Disadvantages of Using a Hosting Provider
- As you are dependent on a third-party provider, you may face some restrictions.
- As per the plans you choose, it comes with fewer hosting location choices.
How to Host a Website (Step-by-Step Guide)
Step 1 – Deciding the Website Type
First, decide the type of your website to be hosted i.e. static and dynamic.
- Static websites are simple, cheaper, and can be built using software like Dreamweaver on your system. You can upload the pages to the host server. As they are static, you need to make changes to the pages locally and upload them again. These websites come with limited features and functionalities and without an eCommerce option. They are informational but interaction-unfriendly.
- Dynamic websites are interactive and contain information that can be changed anytime. It allows you to use server-side and client-side scripts for making changes. Dynamic websites are CMS-driven that enable you to edit and add content.
Step 2 – Deciding the Type of Web Hosting
Web hosting is available in many types, namely Shared Hosting, VPS Hosting, Dedicated Hosting, and Cloud Hosting.
Before proceeding further, you need to decide which hosting suits your business needs. Once you get your website’s purpose, you can quickly determine what type of hosting you will require. We will discuss all hosting types in detail below:
1. Shared Hosting
It is a common choice if you are a beginner and do not want to invest much. You do not require any technical knowledge for leveraging this type of web hosting. It is best suited for small-scale websites that do not have much incoming traffic.
The website hosted on a dedicated server will share resources and services with other websites. It may impact your website’s performance if another website is consuming most of the resources.
2. VPS Hosting
Also known as virtual private server hosting, this type of web hosting partitions a server into multiple servers and assigns each partition to multiple websites, limiting the number of resources dedicated to each of them.
With VPS, you do not have to share resources with another website. It improves your website’s performance, bandwidth, and uptime. This hosting works well for websites receiving a medium level of traffic. It allows you to control the server settings too.
3. Dedicated Hosting
This type of web hosting is well-suited for large enterprises with a generous budget, massive traffic, and dedicated hardware and resources to handle the traffic.
You need good technical knowledge to benefit from this web hosting type to manage the server config changes and the hosting environment. But leveraging such benefits comes at a considerable price.
4. Cloud Hosting
Cloud hosting is very popular and ideal for a website with changing and growing business needs. It can handle even more traffic than dedicated hosting. It allows your website to run on multiple cloud servers and ensures continuous accessibility and availability of your website.
Step 3 – Choosing the Right Hosting Plan
Once you decide what type of hosting service you need, the next step is to finalize the plan according to your budget. You need to consider various factors as different plans offer different benefits.
You need to choose what services you want to apply on your website and go for that plan. Below are the most important factors influencing your choice of hosting plans:
It specifies the amount of traffic received by your website per month and the number of pages visitors visit. Check if your web hosting plan comes with the maximum bandwidth coverage managing thousands of customer requests at the same time without creating any downtime for the website.
Data can be static or dynamic when it comes to website content. If you have dynamic content, it will grow with time according to the changing business needs. Check if you have sufficient storage services provided by your web hosting plan.
It defines the server’s up-and-running time. If you have robust servers at your end, you will get high website performance. Check if your web host provides the exact uptime they mention in their plan. Because if the server fails due to any reason, your customers will face hours of a website outage.
4. Email Accounts
Check if your web host provider enables you to create a domain-associated email address within its plan without any extra cost.
It will enable you to upload files from your local system to the server directly. You might not require this function, but in some cases, it is useful for some users.
6. Tech Support
Check if your hosting provider offers you enough tech support to maintain and handle your website-related issues. It will save you from facing issues if you are not into technical work.
Some Additional Features to Look For:
These are not compulsory features but add value to your web hosting purchase:
- Free domain (usually for the first year)
- Free SSL certificate
- Free cPanel license
- Google Ads credit
- Free site builder
- Free site migration
- Unlimited email accounts
- Automatic backups
Step 4. Domain Registration
Web hosting is different from domain hosting. For your users to access your website, you need to have a domain name. A domain name is your website’s address that creates a link for your website to access via browsers.
The domain name has two parts separated via a dot specifying the brand name and the domain extension. Together, they will create a complete URL for your website.
Many web hosting plans allow you to create a domain name and register it. The domain name has to be unique for your website but make sure you want to buy a domain from the same provider. You can use any third party to create and register your domain.
Step 5. Moving your Website to the Designated Server
Once you are done with the domain name and web hosting provider and plans, you can now move your website. For beginners, it may be a complicated task.
Taking it a Step Further – Hosting your Website Locally
Hosting locally means you are experienced – and resourceful – enough to set up your own server, and location, install hardware, have a separate IT team to handle website issues, and you will be fully responsible for any website failure. Please note that it will require strong technical skills.
Advantages of Local Web Hosting
- You can control the complete hosting environment.
- You will get faster and more efficient turnaround times.
- You can choose any web hosting service provider.
Disadvantages of Local Web Hosting
- It can be costly to set up a complete backend for your website.
- This type of hosting may not always be successful.
- Strictly not for beginners.
If you are a beginner at hosting a website, then this article will help you get started with the process. Once you understand the web hosting process, terminology, and features, you can go ahead with the actual hosting process. Yes, it can be complicated to understand each technical term at first, but over time – with dedication – you will do it.
Web hosting is essential for any business to create and handle a website(s). Mind you, choosing the right web host provider will successfully let you increase website traffic and deal with massive traffic without any perceivable downtime.
Keep learning. All the best!
Frequently Asked Questions
1. Why do you need web hosting?
If you want to promote your business, product, or service online through a website then to make it accessible to your targeted or potential customers, web hosting is needed.
2. Can I host my website for free?
Yes, you can host your website for free on various web hosting platforms. These web hosting providers will provide you with the required space, and other basic things required to make your website live online.
3. How much does it cost to host a website?
The cost of hosting a website ranges from $5 to $50 a month.
4. What are the drawbacks of hosting my own website?
The drawbacks of hosting your website on your own include investing a significant amount of time, limited resources, lack of staff to resolve technical issues, etc.
5. Can I host my own website?
Yes, you can host your website on your own but you should have the knowledge to set up a WWW server software on your computer so that the targeted audiences can access the web files on your computer.
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