Web hosting is very important if you wish to build your own website. If you do not know what it is, read further to find out all of the important things that you need to know about it.
What is Web Hosting?
Web hosting is where a company (a hosting provider) rents you a space in their servers so that your website can be accessed online.
A web hosting company is a business entity that owns plenty of servers. The money that you pay them is basically rent money so that you can borrow their server’s resources for your website to be ‘hosted’ (aka visible online).
If your website is inaccessible at any point in time, it can be attributed to server problems (but it can also mean other things as well).
Domain and Web Hosting
People lump both of the things together but they are actually completely separate things. I think that is due to the fact that most web hosting companies nowadays also offer domain registration as part of their core services.
Anyway, just think of it this way: your domain is your online address and web hosting just provides you with the lot where you can establish your website. Anyone who wishes to visit your website would have to know your address before they can do so. That being said, a domain name (your online address) should be registered in a domain registrar. However, as previously stated, some companies have their own domain registrar or they are partnered with one so you do not have to think about getting another similar service.
What is Uptime?
In your quest of finding a web hosting provider, you might have noticed the term ‘uptime’ being used. Uptime basically refers to server uptime and that is the time their servers are up. You want a reliable hosting provider that is able to deliver you top-notch performance, especially when it comes to server uptime.
Despite their claims, you want to go with a hosting provider that can promise you at least 95-99% server uptime because any time their servers go down, your website will go along with it.
Now, you might think, ‘why not get a company that promises 100% uptime’? Well, it is virtually impossible. That is because, at the end of the day, servers are just computers (and really powerful ones at that), but their components can fail at any time which means that the company would have to do the necessary maintenance and repair just to keep things in working order again.
Bandwidth and Storage
Both bandwidth and storage are two services that are commonly being offered by web hosting providers. The former just refers to the amount of data that goes to and from your website and storage is basically the amount of storage capacity you are given to store all of your website’s files.
You might come across unlimited offers for both, but you still have to read their terms of service. The reason why companies offer such is that they assume that you are not really going to maximize both services anyway, but if you do, you might incur penalties as a result. It is always good practice to not disregard the terms of service and to read it in its entirety so that you will be aware of everything.