Choosing a Web Hosting Provider for Your Blog
Another important part of establishing your weblog is choosing a reliable web hosting company. If this is your first time to establish your own first websites or blog, you could be asking yourself what a web hosting is. A web hosting company provides a server space where you can store the files that make up your websites and make them available and accessible to internet users.
Determine Your Web Hosting Needs
Before you can actually choose a web hosting company, you should first determine your exact web hosting needs. Some of the things that you should determine before choosing a webhost are:
- Number of sites you are looking to host or store in your webhost – this is important because this will determine the amount of storage space and domains allowed that you require or need in a web host.
- Estimated amount of traffic – it is understood that a new website or blog will receive minimal number of visitors. However, you should also anticipate the increase of your traffic. Determining your estimated traffic is important to know the amount of bandwidth that you need.
- Programming Languages, Scripts and Databases to use – this is important to know what operating system your web host needs to run, scripts and programming languages that it supports and number of databases that it allows.
- Additional Features or Services – determine what additional features or services that you require for your websites or blogs.
Choosing Your Web Host
After determining these things, you are now ready to search for a good web hosting service provider. Here are the things that you should take a look at when comparing hosting packages from different companies:
Disk Space is the amount of storage that you are allowed to use. You should choose the hosting company that can provide you the amount of storage that you need plus a little allowance for future expansion or adding more websites.
Check how much bandwidth or amount of traffic your web host is allowed to receive per day or per month. Exceeding the allowable bandwidth will make your website temporarily inaccessible. You should get a web host that offers high or unlimited bandwidth.
Another important consideration is the number of domains allowed in a hosting package. Of course, the more domains allowed, the better.
Price is one of the major considerations in buying any product or service but it isn’t necessarily the most important. Some good things in life are free but I’m afraid a web host is not one of them. There are companies that will offer you web hosting services for free but in exchange, advertisements in the form of banners, pop ups and PPC ads will pollute your site. I recommend that you get a cheap web hosting services rather than a free one.
You should also check the companies’ hosting payment plans. Some web hosting companies offer cheap monthly prices but they will require you to pay for 3, 6, 9 months or even 1 year upfront. It is lighter if you buy a hosting package the will require you to pay on a monthly basis.
There are 2 different operating systems that a web host runs: Linux and Windows. The two differ in the programming languages that they support. Windows support Active Server Pages or ASP. On the other hand, Linux supports Personal Home Page or PHP, Java, Perl, and Ruby. Future tutorials will focus on establishing WordPress Blogs that uses PHP so you will need to choose a web host that runs in a Linux server.
A database is where all your blogs’ content is kept. Choose a webhost that will meet the number of databases that you require. A hosting company can offer from 5 to an unlimited number of databases to be set up in a hosting account.
Reliability is a major concern when choosing a web hosting service provider and it goes beyond the measure of numbers. A good and reliable web host should offer you:
- 99% uptime for all your Websites
- 24/7 sales and technical support
- Instant or scheduled backups
- Money back guarantee
There are two web hosting companies that provide services for my blogs and websites. These are GoDaddy and Hostgator:
GoDaddy is well known company in the domain name industry and it has also become one of the most reliable web hosting providers. $6.99 can give you 150 Gigabytes of storage, 1,500 GB of bandwidth, 25 MySQL databases and host unlimited number of websites. They also provide a good email support to help you with web hosting related questions. However, there is one downside of using GoDaddy as your web host. It has a complicated interface that could give newbies a hard time in using. This webhost is more recommendable to more advanced webmasters.
Host Gator is the web hosting company that I can recommend to new webmasters and bloggers. This is because it uses a user friendly Control Panel. For as little as $7.95, you can get 600 GB of disk space and allowed up to 6,000 GB of bandwidth. You will have no problem for future expansions and increase in your weblogs’ visitors with this amount of storage and bandwidth. You are also allowed to host unlimited domains and database. This is the best hosting provider for new bloggers looking to set up a wordpress blog.
When choosing a webhost, or any product or services, keep in mind that “good” is defined by meeting your needs plus a little extra features.