There are over 4 billion people using the internet every day. If you want to attract people to your website, you need to find a good web host company to help you start your journey.
Part of choosing your provider to host your own website, you need to decide what type of web hosting you want to use. This can be a tricky process. If you are in Ireland, or in other parts of the EU, this guide can help you figure out which type of web hosting best suits you for hosting your own website.
Let’s start off with the basics. Web hosting is when a company will provide a server for you so your website can be on the internet.
How about we use a real-world example to better explain this. Convention centers will rent out space to a multitude of companies. The convention center would be the web host and the renters would be anyone who wants to create a website. The type of convention will determine how many renters you have and how much space will be available. The convention center has a finite amount of space. The more renters you have the less room you will have in that space.
For this article, we are going to focus on two forms of web hosting. We will be discussing shared and virtual private server (VPS) hosting. They are two of the most popular forms of web hosting.
It sounds exactly how you imagine it would. You are sharing the server you are putting your website on with up to thousands of other people.
Let’s look back at the earlier example of convention centers. If you had a large convention in one shared space it would be like shared hosting. You have many companies crammed in on small space all trying to sell you their products and/or services.
Shared hosting is best used by people who are looking to create a personal webpage, or if they are a small business. This is the best option when you know you won’t have a lot of foot traffic. The more foot traffic you have, the harder it will be to run your website through shared hosting.
Let’s take a look at some advantages and disadvantages to this type of hosting.
For shared hosting, we have a few gems worth looking at.
Cheap! Cheap! Cheap!
With this option, you share your expenses with other people on the server (meaning you pay less out of pocket). On average, you will be paying €3 – €10 per month for good shared hosting. This will help your website get its foot in the door without you having to break the bank.
Not only is it cheap, but you need very little knowledge to run your website. This option is great if you are creating your first website or starting up a company. Hosting providers will maintain the server for you. If anything goes wrong you contact your web host provider and they will take care of the issue(s) for you. It requires very minimal technical skills.
If anything goes wrong you contact your web host provider and they will take care of the issue(s) for you. It requires very minimal technical skills.
You may be sharing a server with many people, but you are still free to customize your website any way that you like. No one is going to personalize your website for you, this is where your unique perspective comes in.
Yet, with all these great upsides there must always be downsides.
Cons aren’t necessarily a bad thing, they are something you need to be aware of and keep an eye on. Constant vigilance!
You could have hardly anyone on your shared server, which would be great. In the real-world you tend to not be so lucky. You are more likely to have hundreds or thousands of people sharing the same space. Generally, one server will have about 1,000 people and no more.
Since you are sharing a server, all the resources available to you are being shared with everyone. That means your storage space, RAM and CPU are being shared amongst many people.
If a lot of people are using the server and/or a large amount is being stored in the servers, latency can be an issue. You will have too much traffic going through the server. This will lead to performance issues on your website. The latency could get so bad that your website will crash.
As an example, when you have many people coming from different directions it turns into a traffic jam. Everything halts, no one is going anywhere.
Be that as it may, if you choose to use a web host in your country of origin it will help with some of your latency issues. You will find your website loading speeds will improve. Always look for silver linings where you can.
With so much traffic it makes it easier for people to hack into your server space. They can slip in and out unnoticed. Look for web hosts that provide security protocols.
Any provider that offers extra website hosting services will be beneficial to you. Look for web host providers that deliver beyond a simple shared host product. This could mean more data protection, great customer service, offering more applications, etc. This ensures more safety and less worry for you.
When you have so many people on one server, you have a tendency to notice one another. Not in the normal sense, mind you. What you have in this instance is the noisy neighbor. This is anyone who takes up the majority of the resources that are available to everyone on the server. This issue is what causes most of the disadvantages you will have when using shared hosting.
Let’s play this out. Say you are at a friend’s party and a bunch of people are at the house. You can have someone at this party known as a party crasher. They are loud, breaking things in your house, and eating everything in sight. This individual is now disrupting the party that was going smoothly. No one is having fun anymore except the party crasher. They are blind to all the chaos they are creating for everyone around them. The best thing you can do is leave and come back when they aren’t so disruptive.
The noisy neighbor may not be aware that they are taking all the resources from everyone around them. They may be unaware of all the issues they are causing. As with the party, you may have to wait them out until you can get more traffic on your site. If it becomes a normal occurrence you may have to contact your web host provider.
That wraps up shared hosting. Maybe you are already on board to start using shared hosting, but let’s see what VPS hosting has to offer first.
With VPS hosting you are still sharing a physical server. Even so, it is with a finite amount of people and much fewer people.
Let’s review the convention center example once more. If you were to have a small event where they are only hosting one or two companies, it would be VPS hosting. You have the room you need to get your work done and you can easily see what is going on around you.
VPS hosting is most useful for growing smaller companies, or for medium-sized companies. Places where you know you will have a little more traffic.
Let’s start by looking at all the positives VPS hosting has to offer.
The beating heart of VPS hosting. Pros that you can walk away with feeling happy and satisfied.
You may be on the same physical server as a couple of other people, but you have your own storage space. You have your virtual server all to yourself.
To make better sense of this, you are sharing one larger server with a group of people. This server is broken up into individual virtual servers. This virtual server is dedicated to you alone.
Now that you have your own storage space, you don’t share resources such as CPUs and RAM with anyone else. Each person on the server will get an allotted amount of server space. This means you won’t have anyone encroaching on the space you need.
Since you aren’t sharing your server with loads of people, you will have fewer issues with latency. You won’t have people clogging up the works, so to speak.
Lower latency allows for more foot traffic on your website. More foot traffic leads to more sales of your products and/or services.
If you don’t have to share your space with so many people, it becomes easier to protect your information. Your server doesn’t share the same resources which, makes it easier to protect. Even if someone on the same server as you became compromised, your server would not be affected.
Like shared hosting, you are free to customize your website. There are no restrictions on what you can do with your website. Your imagination is your limit.
While the advantages are great to have, you will always have the other half of the coin (disadvantages).
We meet the cons once more. Think of them as something to conquer. If you persevere you will feel accomplished once your quest is complete. With hard work comes greater rewards.
For VPS hosting plans you pay anywhere between €5 – €120 per month. The better the plan the more expensive it gets. The more expensive plans are being used by people who need more traffic coming in and out of their website.
If you are using a VPS hosting plan you will need much more experience managing it, no one is going to run it for you. You have to set up all your own services and make sure you are updating the server software you are using.
On top of that, if anything goes wrong you need to fix it yourself. If you can’t, you will need to hire someone else to do it for you. You may be able to contact the web host provider for some help, but there is only so much they will aid you with for free.
You may be lucky enough to have a web host provider that gives some support as part of their package. If you do, this is a great option if you are using a web host from your country. You will be in the same time zone, which makes reaching them much easier. On top of that, you could even visit their location if the need arises.
Picking a web host goes beyond the type of web host you want to use. Once you know what web host style that is right for you, you need to pick the web host provider. As you have seen sprinkled throughout this article, it is a good rule of thumb to pick a provider close to you.
You will have many providers to choose from so it is important to choose the one that is a right fit for you. You need a reliable and trustworthy company that will help you on your road to success. A company that you can contact night or day if any issues arise.
The great thing about hosting your own website is that there are many options out there! You can choose a web host that fits your unique style and is within your price range.
If you are excited to learn more about web hosting check out our blog. Whether it is to learn more in the matter of web hosting in general, or about the other types of web hosting out there. Read more, learn more, and have fun doing it!