Finding a web hosting provider can be tough, and we know that. There are so many options and pricing plans to choose from it can be hard to see the wood for the trees. First, determine what type of hosting you will need.
Below are some of the most popular types of web hosting and what they are best for. More details can be gleaned by talking with a hosting provider (they’re usually more than happy to help you in picking plans).
- Shared Hosting – Great for single websites and for people that don’t need the resources of a full server. If you only need one cPanel account and don’t use a lot of traffic or bandwidth this plan would be great for you. Tip: A lot of people tend to think shared hosting means you’ll have to share your website with someone else, that’s not true – it means that you’re sharing the server’s resources with other websites. No one can access your files but you and your hosting provider!
- Reseller Hosting – Great for people who host multiple websites or host on behalf of their clients. Most web designers and start up hosting providers use these plans to get a kick start to their business. This option is more like a shared plan though, the resources are very limited and you’ll need to upgrade eventually if you plan to scale your business.
- Cloud Hosting – Great for people that need a scalable solution, meaning you expect your website to grow at a fast pace and don’t want to be bothered with upgrading servers every month. Cloud Hosting allows you to upgrade your hosting immediately from your web hosting provider’s client area (depending on the hosting provider). A lot of hosting providers are moving from VPS’s (see below) to Cloud Servers are they are pretty much the same thing nowadays.
- VPS Hosting – Great for people who need more than a Shared or Reseller plan, but don’t yet need a dedicated server, or are on a tighter budget. VPS stands for Virtual Private Server. This means it is your own server, but virtually there are more VPS’s on a single machine. VPS’s are also great for learning server management.
- Dedicated Servers – Great for larger websites which use a lot of resources (Diskspace, Bandwidth, RAM etc), web designers or hosting providers that have a bigger client base and need their own dedicated resources to ensure the best uptime and performance possible. A dedicated server can be expensive, but if you’re looking for good performance it’s the best way to go!
Be sure and ask yourself if you do plan on scaling in the future. If you do, you’ll want to find a hosting provider that offers a variety of plans so that you can upgrade with ease if you ever need to. It might be difficult to imagine that one day you’ll need a dedicated server, but if you work hard on your website and start getting a substantial amount of traffic, you’re going to need to upgrade eventually. If the provider doesn’t offer a variety of different options feel free to ask them if they have sister or parent companies that do offer other plans – some hosting companies have multiple companies for different types of hosting.
Quick Tip: If you don’t know how to manage a server you’re going to need to find a provider that offers server management. Managing a server can be very tough and takes lots of knowledge. If you don’t know what you’re doing you could potentially harm all of the websites on your server. Management can be expensive, but trust me, in the long run it could save you serious problems. Please note that this only applies to Cloud Hosting, VPS Hosting and Dedicated Servers.
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