Amazon, Google, GoDaddy, ... Even we offer hosting services... So which one should you choose?
Great! you're website is done, it looks great and you can't wait to show it to the world. You want to be first on Google for all relevant searches, you want your users to send you super nice comments, you want to be the next big thing online. We will cover all of that in future articles but for now let's solve the first problem.
How do I get my awesome website online?
Firstly you require a hosting provider. A hosting provider is usually a company that has huge warehouses full of servers and they sell you a portion of one of those servers so you can put your website on it. That sound simple right?
Unfortunately it's not so simple...
There are thousands of companies providing these services, and on top of that you can even have your website hosted on your home computer. So which one should you choose?
If your website consists of a few pages and images you can go for the cheapest option out there Shared Hosting. Shared hosting is when you buy a tiny bit of server space from one of these big providers.
If your website has a CMS (Content Management System), but with little pages, you can still go for Shared Hosting, but don't cheap out. Go for an intermediate plan. This is very important because a CMS will add a lot of work to your servers therefore you need a bigger portion of a server.
The next option is Dedicated Hosting. This is when you buy one or more complete servers. With this solution you'll be able to accommodate a website that has around 10,000 pages with a CMS and around 100,000 visits a month but of course is significantly more expensive then the 2 options above.
The last option is Hosting your own servers. This solution is going down in popularity quite a lot lately because Dedicated Hosting is becoming cheaper and cheaper. However with this way you have full control of the server hardware, location, internet connection, etc... making it that much more expensive to maintain and requiring a skilled System Administrator to handle it.
Scaling is a term used mainly in software to describe the increase / decrease of a particular software application such as a website. At this stage you have to understand that the more visitors you have at one time, the slower the servers will be and therefore the slower the website will be, so you have to determine how much are you willing to pay to have a server that can scale with your visitors if for example your articles about cats go viral.
Fortunately nowadays there are services which can scale with the demand, this is actually how our hosting service works. We automatically spin up new servers to meet with increased demand. Send us a message to learn more about this.
There are hundreds of companies out there providing hosting solutions with all possible tiers; shared hosting, dedicated, etc... however sometimes there companies try to cheap a little bit to offer a more competitive price and this is where you need to be super careful.
Company 1 can provide a shared hosting account for €6/month and Company 2 might can provide another type of shared hosting for €20/month so what should you go for?
As a rule of thumb you should try out different companies and plans to find what suits you best however there are a few pointers that you can follow to short list the companies you will try out;