Nowadays, it is almost criminal not to have your business online. If you are on the fence about this, you shouldn’t be. There are no two ways about it. Whether the business is a small restaurant or a blooming multinational, having an online presence will do wonders for its growth and sustainability.
Let me tell you why. Consumer behavior has changed so much over the last few decades. Nowadays, when a consumer needs the services of a business, they do not pick up the phone or Yellow Pages. Instead, they go online. And it doesn’t matter what industry you are in, either. Chances are that your competitors are already getting their presence established on the internet.
So maybe you’ve finally decided to take your business online. Good for you. But now you are confused about the types of web hosting available, and undecided on which you should opt for. Don’t worry, this article will explain what web hosting is, its types, as well as the pros and cons of each of them.
What is Web Hosting?
First, we’ll discuss web hosting before moving on to its types. Web hosting is the process surrounding the housing of a website on the world wide web. Basically, when a web host provider allocates a server or some of the space on one to a website to allow it to store its files and use the server’s resources, then the website is being hosted.
Every website that you can visit on the internet is being hosted on a type of server. Servers are a type of computer that comes with the resources, services, or functionality to other programs or devices, called clients, over a network. The resources available to be utilized include disk space, RAM, and processor power.
Web hosting companies provide the connectivity, servers, and all other infrastructure and facilities that websites need to be accessed by their visitors. When visitors to your site want to access the site, they use a browser which to connect to the server the website is hosted on, and your web pages and content are delivered to them.
Types of Web Hosting
There are several options to choose from when it comes to web hosting. Your decision is a big one, and your choice should depend on a variety of factors which include:
- The size of your business
- Expected traffic to your website
- Your budget
- The level of resources and control you want
- The expected rate of growth of the website/business
These are the types of web hosting you will come across, together with their pros and cons.
This is the entry-level tier of web hosting. It is also cheaper than other types of web hosting. Because of its low cost, it is the type of web hosting perfect for individuals and small and medium-sized businesses. This web hosting type also suits beginners, as it is the easiest to set up and manage.
Shared hosting has to do with multiple websites sharing a single server, and the resources that come with it. It’s like a group of friends on vacation sharing a vacation home, and splitting the bills to pay for the furnishing and services that come with it. Except that in shared hosting, it is unlikely that you will know the other websites you share the server with.
For a quality shared hosting provider, you should check out Bluehost.
Pros of Shared Hosting
- It is the cheapest form of web hosting.
- It is also the easiest to manage. Shared hosting generally does not require a wealth of technical knowledge to configure and operate your website.
- Shared hosting can host dynamic websites.
- It is flexible.
Cons of Shared Hosting
- Resources available to your website are limited as they have to be shared.
- The actions of the webmasters of other websites on your server can severely affect your website security-wise. Misusing sensitive elements on the server may result in potential breaches that result in grave consequences.
- Spikes in traffic may affect your website’s performance.
Virtual Private Server or VPS hosting is the next step up from shared hosting and is rapidly gaining popularity. It is a sort of middle ground between shared hosting and dedicated hosting, borrowing elements from both. VPS hosting is great for website owners who want more control and resources than are available on shared hosting plans but do not necessarily require a dedicated server.
How does it work? VPS uses virtualization technology to create an emulated dedicated hosting environment on a server. The websites on a VPS server are allocated their own space in a server and are allowed more resources and control. It is ideal for websites with mid-level traffic and provides root access to the virtual server, with control to make changes.
If you think VPS hosting is the way to go, why don’t you hop on A2 Hosting for outstanding value for your money?
Pros of VPS hosting
- Websites are granted their own virtual servers.
- Significantly more server resources than shared hosting.
- It is cheaper than dedicated hosting.
- Many VPS plans are easily scalable.
- Root access to the server, along with more customization and control.
- VPS website owners get as much technical support as shared web hosting.
Cons of VPS Hosting
- VPS hosting is more expensive than shared hosting.
- Many VPS hosting plans do not have the resources allocated appropriately.
- More technical know-how is required than with shared hosting.
Dedicated Web Hosting
The highest tier of web hosting is dedicated hosting. As the name implies, this type of web hosting has a website being allocated an entire server. Together with the server, the website is granted all the resources that come with it. In other words, no sharing of server resources like storage, bandwidth, and processor power is required.
Dedicated hosting is the most expensive type of web hosting. It is suitable for websites that pull in very high traffic. The website owner is granted full root access and is allowed to fully customize and control the server according to their preference. As such, a high level of technical expertise is usually required to manage it. Some dedicated web hosting providers contribute towards the administration of the server.
For the best managed dedicated host out there, you could do no better than DreamHost.
Pros of Dedicated Web Hosting
- A full website and all its resources are allocated. No sharing.
- Excellent website performance.
- Full root and admin access is granted to the for customization and control of the server.
- Dedicated web hosting is generally very reliable.
- There is no chance of security risks from the actions of other website owners.
- Better customer support
Cons of Dedicated Web Hosting
- It is the most expensive form of web hosting.
- Dedicated web hosting requires a high level of technical expertise. Managed hosting is even more expensive.
Cloud hosting is relatively new and is currently generating a lot of hype on the website hosting space. It is a unique style of web hosting that has websites drawing the resources that it needs from multiple servers. An extensive network of servers provides the resources that are used to power the websites on a Cloud hosting plan.
Cloud hosting is ideal for medium or large website owners that want to focus on their business and content, rather than the technical side of administrating their site. It is very flexible and scalable. Webmasters are allowed to get as many resources as they need for their websites from several servers, instead of just one. They are not required to maintain their own server infrastructure.
A2 Hosting is the best overall provider you can trust for your cloud hosting services.
Pros of cloud hosting
- Excellent uptime and performance due to resource pooling from multiple servers.
- It is flexible and scalable.
- Strong backups and recovery.
- Cost efficiency.
- Easy website migration.
Cons of Cloud Hosting
- It is more expensive than shared and VPS hosting.
- Security risks relating to cloud computing.
Finally, we have reseller web hosting. This is a type of web hosting that has individuals, organizations, or agencies purchasing server resources from a web provider and selling them to third parties. Here, the web hosting provider leases out disk space and bandwidth to entrepreneurs who in turn assume the position of web host to other websites and businesses.
It is ideal for upcoming web hosting firms and web designers or developers who are seeking to offer additional services to their clients. Like the other types of web hosting, the reseller package also has its pros and cons.
HostGator is the reseller hosting provider you should be hopping on for cost-effectiveness and great value overall.
Pros of Reseller Hosting
- It is fairly cheap.
- It provides an extra income opportunity and can be lucrative.
- The reseller gets to build a brand at a fraction of the cost.
Cons of Reseller Hosting
- Limited access to a server.
- The reseller’s business is dependent on the performance of the actual hosting company.
- Migrating to a different hosting provider can be a tedious process.
So, what is The Best Hosting Type for You?
As you can see, there is a wealth of options for you to choose from. The pros and cons of the different types of web hosting will count in you arriving at a decision on which to opt for.
In the end, the best web hosting platform for your website comes down to what your preferences are, and which of the features will suit your website. Your budget is also a major determining factor, along with the expected number of visitors you can expect on your website.