If you are looking to set up a website, then you will need a web hosting package. Whether you are starting up a small online business, info portal, blog, or anything else, a web hosting service allows you to make your website visible to everyone else connected to the Internet.
What is hosting?
Establishing a website works by setting up an account with a web host, who will provide you with server space owned by a given client. Servers are the backbone of the Internet. They are responsible for all Internet data storage and transfer, and are used for activities of all sizes and scopes, from sending an email and using free web page hosting, to operating a major global eCommerce website. One of the best things about web hosting is the amount of space and tools you get for a comparatively small price. For a modest monthly price, you can often get very large or unlimited web space, and multiple domain names to utilize, with many now supporting cloud hosting.
The types of hosting
The major question that most people setting up an online business ask, is what web hosting package is right for them. Depending on how much service usage you will require, you will either opt for shared hosting, reseller hosting, virtual hosting, dedicated hosting, or cluster hosting.
Shared hosting is the most common type of hosting, offering a small amount of resources, but at the cheapest prices. Shared hosting will host many domains on one server, and this makes them ideal for small scale personal or eCommerce websites that do not need much web space, database space and bandwidth. They are also the most common option for Internet users setting up a personal domain.
Reseller hosting is for those looking to sell on hosting space of their own, or start up their own web hosting company. Reseller hosting offers a low risk solution for anyone looking to test the waters, and the hosting space can still be used for anything the owner wants, not just reselling.
Virtual server hosting
Virtual server hosting is the best choice for larger websites, or a number of smaller websites, which need a fair amount of service usage. Virtual server hosting bridges the gap between dedicated hosting and shared hosting, offering much of the same power and versatility of having your own dedicated server, but at a lower cost. You will share the server with other websites, but unlike shared hosting, the server is separated into a number of private virtual servers, which run independently of each other.
Dedicated server hosting
A dedicated server is by far, the most reliable, and secure option for many high resource websites or major commercial ventures. These require more hosting space and bandwidth, than can be provided with shared or virtual hosting. Cluster hosting is an option for the most demanding and resource heavy websites, which ensures high performance at peak times and natural scalability.
Once you have an idea of the scale of coverage you will need, you should next consider what domain name you want, and whether you want data storage, email, and around the clock support. Shared hosting will include different packages to choose from, with you paying more for extra services. For websites that have a lot of data, (for example a download website), storage servers can be rented alongside a virtual or dedicated server.
Once you have decided what you need form you website hosting package, it's probably best to do some back ground research on the providers quality of service, as you want none or as little down time as possible. It is highly recommended that you read web hosting reviews on trusted website and ask questions regarding particular web providers in web hosting forums.