When you're just starting out online - be it for a company website or a simple personal page - getting started can seem overwhelming. The first step to creating your website is to find the web hosting service right for you.
A web hosting service is the home of your website, this is where your files will be stored, protected, retrieved, etc. With a web host, you can purchase the physical disk space on the server in which your website will operate. A proper web host will offer you disk space and bandwidth - the network connection for your website - and will keep your website active online and available for all to see.
Before you begin your search for the web host that will provide your web page the platform it needs to thrive, there are a few things you should understand about web hosting.
Different types of web hosting services
First, you should know which web hosting service your website will be employing. There are four different types of hosting services available, and each has a stark contrast to the other. Some hosting services are perfect for individual use while others are meant specifically for larger companies who need their own server.
This is the most commonly used and affordable options on the list. Shared hosting servers are the types of services you might find offered online to anyone who wants to join. Something along the lines of Wix, GoDaddy, or WordPress. These are dedicated servers that can host millions of sites at one time and offer bandwidth and disk space to anyone who wants to buy it. Shared hosting services are perfect for anyone who is creating a website for a small company or personal use.
This is a service that can be done by almost anyone. Essentially, you're adding a middleman who will facilitate taking care of the server and keeping your website healthy and safe. Reseller hosting is the practice of buying server space, and then selling it to someone who wants to get their website live. You're becoming a website landlord and the server is your building. The benefit of this option is that you get a more personal interaction than you would via a shared hosting service.
Virtual private servers
The next step up in size and hosting ability. A VPS is a private server specifically meant for hosting your website. This option gives your website a more personal feel as you're not sharing a server with a whole host of other clients. The VPS is a larger server that can handle more traffic than the previous two options.
This web hosting service is the biggest and strongest option, as well as the most expensive. Typically, reserved for large corporations who experience heavy traffic on their websites, a dedicated server is meant only for you, and is built and run with your website as the only one it's servicing. A dedicated server is an upgrade to the VPS and can host the greatest amount of traffic of all services.