What is web hosting?
When you create your website, you need someone to store all of its information that is running 24/7 so anybody can access the website, from anywhere, at any time. That’s where web hosting comes in. Web hosting is the process of storing all of the files of a website on a server that remains constantly online, allowing constant access to the website through the world wide web.
Why is web hosting important?
Web hosts allow you to keep your website available every second of every day. This high uptime allows your business to maximise traffic and increase sales – and if your site is international you’ll make sure you aren’t missing out on any potential customers across the time zones.
Good web hosting services can also create a knock-on effect on your Google rankings. A site that is always running and accessible will rank higher than a site that is constantly down and not providing any value to visitors.
How does web hosting work?
Web hosting provides stable and secure storage space for websites and their files. Whilst this is not the only service web hosting provides, it is the core part of their functionality.
Normally, An individual or organisation will upload their website files onto a web server from a local computer, the server will then dedicate resources, such as RAM, hard drive space, and bandwidth to the website to keep it up and running
How do I choose the best web hosting provider?
There are now thousands of web hosting providers offering a range of services from cloud hosting to virtual private servers or “VPS”. So much choice can make things difficult, especially when all the “different” hosting packages sound the same. That’s why we’ve put together some quick guidance on what to look out for:
Web host’s Uptime
You don’t want a web server that is constantly going down. When looking at different hosting providers, keep an eye out for guaranteed uptime and fair terms of service. Most promise 99.9% uptime but on average you’re looking at around 99.56% (which is still great). Any less and it is a definite no-go.
Using a confusing hosting company can lead to you struggling to get any information on your site. Make sure the web host that you choose has an easy-to-navigate panel that allows you to easily manage your website’s files. The best way to understand this would be to look at YouTube reviews of your planned hosting provider.
The easiest way to get a quick understanding of a web host is through their customer reviews. When checking through their reviews don’t just look at the stars (like we all normally do), look for comments regarding their uptime, speed, and security so that you’re able to build clear views of how these services perform in the eyes of its customers.
24 hours customer support
Your website is going to be running 24/7 and it could go down at any time, that’s why you want to ensure your hosting service offers 24-hour customer support either through phone or live chat so that they can respond quickly to any issues. If all you have is an email, good luck waiting 3-5 business days to have an issue resolved.`
You want to ensure that your website’s hosting provider has advanced security controls. This can include secure access, DDOS protection, and backups.
What are the best web hosting services?
With thousands of hosts to choose from it’s easy to get a bit lost when searching. To help make things easy we’ve put together 3 – extremely popular – high-quality web hosting services:
DreamHost is a widely used hosting platform that provides a varied pricing level to match different website needs. DreamHost provides great flexibility allowing you to start on their more basic packages and upgraded as your site grows. DreamHost also provides excellent support and a highly secure cloud hosting package for sites that plan to scale.
NameCheap is popular due to its affordable pricing and its full-service offering. With NameCheap, you can do everything, from purchasing your domain to hosting the site. With their security updates, specialised apps, and constant support, NameCheap offers a good, flexible solution that most people will feel comfortable with.
HostGator is a premium solution at an extremely affordable price. They offer excellent support, great security, an easy-to-use panel and are a great choice for any website. If you’re struggling to pick a host, we highly suggest starting with HostGator, their wide range of plans fits any budget and hosting plan. They also come with a 45-day period, so you can test without making a commitment.