If you want to have a website of your own, you must find a way to keep it online all the time. Web hosting is an online service that allows you to buy space on a server that stays on throughout the day and night. In this way, your website can be accessed by anyone even while your computer is off and you are asleep.
Most people think that designing a website is all it takes to showcase your website to the world. You must know that apart from building your website, you must register your domain name and –most important- host your website.
In order to host your website, you would require a server that is linked to the internet and remains on all the time. Moreover you would require other hardware and software and the people to manage the whole setup. With a web hosting service, you do not have to worry about the technicalities, as all the handling and servicing will be done by the web hosting company. This will save your valuable time and money, and rather enable you to concentrate on your website content and its purpose.
A web hosting company usually has a high-powered computer, called a web server. This server is connected to a high-speed and superior internet connection. Furthermore, the company has its own technical staff to manage the server. A web server can either be dedicated to a single business or can be shared by multiple businesses.
So, accordingly, there is free web hosting, shared web hosting and dedicated web hosting. If you are a beginner and you are checking out things, you can go in for free web hosting. Although free web hosting will allow your website to remain online 24/7, you will be limited in what you can do. Your web address will not be unique, but it will be an extension of the provider’s domain. Moreover, the web hosting company will display its own banner ads in order to make money from your visitors. Therefore, if you are into serious business and require a domain name that is characteristic of your business, its best to go in for paid web hosting.
Shared web hosting allows many websites to share the same web server. In this way the cost is shared and becomes affordable for small businesses. Such shared servers are monitored around the clock by IT professionals in order to keep them running and provide maximum security. So, if you are in a medium online business, such a web hosting service can be ideal for you. You can control various features by a control area that the web host will provide you with. You can avail of such web hosting for as less as $4 per month.
You will be offered a specific allocation and a specific bandwidth as per your requirements. There are different packages that are priced differently. If your business requires emails, forums, guest books, and other scripts you can avail of these facilities.
Dedicated web hosting is for large businesses that have thousands of visitors on a daily basis, and that may require business to be transacted online. In this case, an entire web server is allocated to a single business and may cost as much as $100 per month or more.
Before selecting your web hosting company, you must determine the purpose of your website. This will help you ascertain the amount of disk space, the bandwidth and the services you will require.