You’re ready to put your website online. Now, you need to choose the best way to make that happen. How does that work?
Everyone should invest time to understand how a website operates, what it takes to publish it online, and hosting plan options. The alternative is waiting to run into a problem and dealing with issues after the consequences appear. Is that really an option?
We can bet you don’t want that because we wouldn’t want it either.
Table of Contents
You post your website or online platform in virtual space. The virtual space exists as a server and represents a really powerful computer. Web hosting provides this space and all the necessary tech tools and technology to make your website accessible to other people on the internet. It is the centralized place for all the images, files, videos, text, and other elements that make up your site.
The data center and web host are often mixed up and treated as the same thing. However, a data center is the physical place where the computer servers are located. A web host is a company that provides the space on a server, which is typically located in the data center.
Be aware an ultimate solution that fits every type of business need or request does not exist. Every case is a separate issue that must be approached and treated differently.
Generally, web hosting can be separated into four groups:
- Shared hosting is when multiple sites are hosted on the same web host. Technically, you’re sharing the same server space with other websites. Although cost-effective, you can run into problems once your website starts to gain more traffic. A lot of requests received from multiple places at the same time can block the system or make it go down immediately. Therefore, shared hosting works best for entry-level businesses and beginners.
- Virtual Private Server (VPS) is similar to shared hosting. The key difference is each site has its own virtual server despite sharing the same main server. VPS is faster than shared hosting, and page load times are increased. This is important because conversions are influenced by website speed. This impacts search engine optimization (SEO), too. VPS is great if your website has a lot of graphics and visual elements that can reduce loading time.
- Dedicated server hosting offers more control over everything you do because no other websites take part in the total resources. While more expensive compared to the previous solutions, if your website grows over time, buying a dedicated hosting just for your business is worth considering. Dedicated server hosting is great for websites with a lot of traffic.
- Cloud hosting is great for businesses or individuals who want to choose something between VPS and shared hosting. If you aren’t concerned about the technical aspects of VPS but still need to deal with a lot of traffic constantly, this might be the solution for you.
Before buying a web hosting for yourself, you need to know some key terms and phrases that can impact your decision.
Bandwidth: Bandwidth measures the speed of your network connection. Higher bandwidth allows more visitors to access your website while providing a satisfactory user experience for all at the same time. If you’re new in the business, you probably don’t need to purchase a high-bandwidth solution. However, you should invest in bandwidth if your user will view a lot of videos, images, or any other visual objects.
Disk space and storage: Some web hosts claim they offer unlimited data storage, but those are lies. At the end of the day, getting something unlimited for free is too good to be true 🙂
Customer support: A lot of businesses fail to put attention on customer support even though it’s one of the most important aspects of having and nurturing a successful business. Choose a company that can answer all your questions and has the expertise to advise what’s best for your needs. We do this at BankSITE every day!
SSL certificate: Having a secure website, especially for banks and credit unions, is a MUST. No excuses. No alternatives. Besides this protecting your customers and your business, using an unsecured Hypertext Transfer Protocol (HTTP) impacts SEO negatively. You can’t afford to lose your rankings and conversions game for nothing. Setup the HTTP over SSL or Hypertext Transfer Protocol Secure (HTTPS) version of your website today.
Backup: Backup. Backup. Backup. Disasters happen from time to time, so make a plan with your developers to back up all the necessary data or choose the right service that can do it for you. Having a backup plan protects both you and your customers.
Domain names: Your domain name identifies one or more IP addresses associated with your site. If you plan to host several websites under the same account, check the best options for buying domains. Ideally, choose ones that uniquely represent your business.
There are countless other things to know about, like email, uptime, and an overview of web hosting costs. We’ll leave those topics for another detailed explanation. Stay in touch with us and follow our blog to learn more about web hosting.