Jargon Busters #2: Understanding Web Hosting

Welcome to the second part of our jargon-busting series.

If you missed the first part, which deals with Domain Names, you can find it here.

Having a domain name is a great start … but it’s not the only thing you need in order to get your website online.

Your site needs to be “hosted” on the web. That means that all the files for your site have to be stored on a computer that’s connected to the internet, so that people can see your site when they visit it.

Now, technically, you could keep your website on your home computer and set things up so it could be accessed – but no-one does this.

Why? Because:

  • You’d have to keep your computer switched on 24-7 so your site never had downtime.
  • You’d have security implications (e.g. you’d have to switch off your firewall).
  • Your computer or internet connection might be slow, which would make your site run slowly.
  • Getting things set up would be a technical challenge; it’s much easier to buy web hosting than to set up your computer in this way.

There are loads of companies that offer web hosting, giving your site a permanent space on the web so it can be accessed by anyone, anywhere, any time. This space is on a special computer called a “server”.

(We’ll come onto WordPress in the third part of this series.)

There are plenty of excellent, good value webhosts out there. Daniel uses HostGator, and I use Dreamhost. To get the cheapest deals with any webhost, you’ll need to pay for a year’s hosting up-front – but you can normally pay monthly instead (it just ends up costing more overall).

Tips:

  • Shop around and read reviews before deciding on a web host. You can change to a different hosting company in the future, but it’s always easiest to stay in one place.
  • Look for a company offering unlimited space and unlimited bandwidth (both HostGator and Dreamhost do). If you have limited space, you may have trouble hosting videos or other large files. If you have limited bandwidth, your site might go down – or you might get hit with charges – if you get lots of visitors in a short space of time.
  • Avoid very cheap deals: chances are, these will limit you quite severely.Make sure you’ll be able to install WordPress. You can find a list of WordPress’s recommended web hosts here.

Further Reading:

The Hosting Plan You Need Depends on Revenues, and Not Only Traffic (Daniel Scocco, DailyBlogTips)

Why I Switched Blog Hosting Companies (and Who I’m With Now) (Darren Rowse, ProBlogger)

How to Pick the Best WordPress Web Hosting (Syed Balkhi, Balkhis.com)

Do you have a question about web hosting, or a crucial tip that I’ve missed? Drop a comment below…

Wanna learn how to make more money with your website? Check the Online Profits training program!


Source: http://www.dailyblogtips.com/understanding-web-hosting/

Category: General

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