Essential for any website wanting to go online, the right web hosting can be hard to pick considering the huge amount of services offered. To make sure you choose the right web host for your business, it is important to know the main basics. In this article, we are going to talk about the different types of web hosting and their specificities.
What is web hosting and how can it affect the performance of a website?
Hosting is one of the essential steps in creating and putting a website online. By hosting your site on a host’s server, it becomes accessible to everyone at any time.
In addition, a web host allocates a certain number of resources such as an IP address, a database, storage space, bandwidth, site management tools, etc.
Web hosting is one of the technical optimization levers that can be improved in parallel with more strategic levers such as content creation, offer customization or communication/marketing.
Indeed, some criteria related to web hosting can influence the performance of a site, including the page load speed which is taken into account by Google for SEO. Website speed can be optimised and improved using specific types of hosting services (a VPS over a shared hosting for instance.)
Therefore, using a professional hosting provider ensures optimal access to the site and its content. It also gives companies the opportunity to enjoy certain benefits, such as reduced operating costs and reduced material and human investment.
The choice of a host is made mainly based on criteria related to storage and usage: disc space required, operating system and speed. It is therefore essential to think about the goals to be achieved with your website to ensure the host you chose is suitable to your needs.
What are the main types of website hosting?
There are three main traditional types of web hosting on physical servers. The role of all three is, in any case, to guarantee their users a broadband connection, the necessary bandwidth and a secure server.
– Shared servers: they group several hosting spaces on a single server. Even if they have a similar configuration, the hosted sites can be very different from each other. The shared servers offer the most affordable plans. Easy to use, they do not require any particular knowledge regarding server administration and software configuration.
– Dedicated servers: a server entirely dedicated to one website/client. The advantage of this type of server is that it allows complete access to software and gives you the possibility to host several sites. In addition, it offers great performance in terms of speed and page loading time. If it requires a minimum of technical knowledge in terms of administration (to update the operating system, security patches, data backup monitoring, etc.), it is however possible to call on experts to assist you. The dedicated server is particularly well suited to sites with high bandwidth requirements.
– VPS (Virtual Private Server): several virtual servers created from a single physical server. Beyond the complete control of hosting (rights on folders, software installation, etc.) made possible by this type of server, it offers the same advantages as a dedicated server. However, the cost is much lower. VPS are particularly interesting when a website exceeds 300 daily visits. It is a real compromise between the dedicated server and the shared server.
In addition to these 3 hosting types, there is another entirely virtual type known as Cloud hosting. Particularly flexible and affordable in terms of costs, clouds are very large virtual server farms.
Spread over several datacentres themselves located in different geographical areas, they allow data to be downloaded from any location at any time. Indeed, the only condition required to access it is to have an internet connection.
For professionals, there is the private cloud option to access data from an intranet network. Companies, perhaps even more so than individuals, should choose their web hosting carefully in order to guarantee a completely reliable and secure server.
In the case of an e-commerce for example, it is essential that the site is available 24/7 and that the loading time of the pages is fast, at the risk of losing many visitors. Hosting must also be able to absorb a large traffic.
To conclude, you should choose your web hosting carefully as it guarantees both access to your website content and good technical performances, thus contributing greatly to the comfort of the user experience. That is why it is not recommended to choose a web host according to its price.