Internet Services

Web Hosting for Dummies: A Beginner’s Guide

web hosting

If you’re looking to set up a website, you’re going to need to think about web hosting. Here’s a guide to what it is, what you’ll need and where to find the best deals using sites like

What is web hosting?

To put a website online, an individual or business must go through a web host. The website will be created then all the necessary files uploaded to the server of the web host for publishing on the world wide web.

Types of web hosting

Depending on the type of website you want to put online, you’ll need a certain type of web hosting. Here are some of the most popular and easy to use.

Free Hosting – If you want a very basic, or personal website that won’t be getting much traffic then you could go for free hosting. In most cases, you won’t get you own domain and you’re very limited when it comes to design and functionality.

Shared Hosting – This is the type of hosting most small businesses go for. The cost of the server is shared amongst different people, which helps to keep costs down. You can get your own domain name and there’s plenty of technical support. However, you are restricted when it comes to traffic and bandwidth.

Dedicated Hosting – This is an expensive option that is best suited to large websites that get a lot of traffic. There are very few restrictions and it’s a very powerful solution with unlimited software options.

Collocated Hosting – This is where you host your website on your own server on the premises of your service provider. It takes a lot of tech know-how to configure and can be hard to debug but you have very high bandwidth, up-time and security.

What to look out for

If you’re just starting out with a website you’ll want something cheap and simple, however, you’ll also want the freedom to grow if your website does start to get big. For this reason, shared hosting is the best step for new website owners. You’ll get your own domain and it’s not too difficult to move to better hosting if you need to.

The pricing structure for all types of hosts will vary depending on space, bandwidth, type of domain (although you can often go elsewhere for this), and email addresses allowed. A lot of hosts will offer a discount for the first year, take a look at what the price will be after this time to make sure it’s still reasonable.

Support is an important part of any web hosting package, especially if you’re new to this world of websites. Look for a host that has 24-hour telephone and email support.

Take a look at the down-time for the host you are looking at. This is especially important if you’re going to be on shared hosting. Compare your chosen host’s downtime with that of others.

If you’re new to the concept of web hosting, make sure you take your time to do your research and choose the best option for your needs.