One of the first and most important things to consider when starting your website is to have a web hosting provider. Now if these words are new to you, don’t worry! In this beginner’s guide to web hosting and for you to get a basic idea what web hosting is, let’s have a game! Imagine you’re going to have your dream coffee shop in the middle of a busy city. You’ve hired an architect for the overall design, interviewed some potential staff, and finalized your overall brand. But, you don’t have the official contract for the building! It means you don’t have the physical coffee shop yet.
In this article, we’ll talk about a complete beginner’s guide to web hosting: what web hosting is and why you need it.
What is web hosting?
As an introduction to this beginner’s guide to web hosting, let’s first talk about what web hosting is. Web hosting is putting your website files on a server. Then this server makes your website files publicly accessible so that anyone on the Internet can visit it.
This is why web hosting is like the building contract of your dream coffee shop. It’s like all the necessary things are available, but your customers can’t find your shop. Simply put that your customers can’t visit you because you don’t have the physical shop to begin with.
So, in simpler terms, web hosting is the process of using a web server to host a website. It enables every website to be accessible to customers around the world through the internet.
What do you need to host a website?
There are 2 basic things needed in hosting a website:
- Use a web hosting service provider.
Using a web hosting service provider can be the easiest way when you start to host your website. You can subscribe to a monthly fee wherein it’s not really that costly, and technical support is readily available. You can also rely on the service provider’s systems, so there’s no need for any hardware maintenance.
Website hosting service providers can provide different types of of hosting services and offers depending on the website needs. Same as going to a coffee shop and looking at a menu with different types of coffee, these web hosting service providers come in different types as well. Here are the most common web hosting options:
- Shared hosting
A shared hosting service is suitable for small websites and blogs that are still starting out. This is a bit cheaper because this is done by allowing multiple websites to share similar website resources.
- VPS/Cloud hosting
Virtual Private Server or VPS hosting is still considered as shared hosting, but you get to have a private server so that you can have your own hosting control panel/
- Dedicated Server hosting
A dedicated server hosting is an entire server to your website. You will manage all the resources, advanced tools, and installation of your own software and operating system. This requires expertise and a lot of technical skills.
2. Getting a domain name.
A domain name is your website’s address. It’s what people type in every browser to get to your website. It basically starts with www, so in simpler terms, this is the exact address needed for customers to find your coffee shop.
You may check with your web hosting service provider if their package comes with a domain name for free. But if not, you’ll need to buy it separately.
Now, remember that the Internet is a network of computers communicating together. An IP address, in the form of numbers, is assigned in each computer. It will be quite difficult to remember when we want to visit a website inputting numbers on it. Hence, the birth of domain names.
The most common domain name extensions is .com. Yet there are also other options such as .net, .org, .net, .info, and many more.
How much does it cost to host a website?
Hosting plans come in different pricing. So you need to choose a plan that suits your budget and needs.
Here is a guide that will help you know when it comes to web hosting cost:
- Determine what type of hosting you need.
- How much will this type of hosting cost.
- Check out different providers so that you can get an average price.
- Extra costs do happen!
You may start with cheaper plans, and then eventually upgrade when your website grows over time. Always be ready with extra budget as soon as you start a website because you might be spending some on templates, software extensions, and other services.
But if you’re still looking for something free for you to get an idea how it works, it is also possible. However, free hosting plans mean that services are only available for a limited time.
Need help with web hosting?
Not sure where to start? Choosing a good web hosting service with all the necessary updates and upgrades is essential in growing your business. We at www.mobilefirst.com.au can help you with your beginner’s guide to web hosting. Send us a message now!