When a CMS is used to create a website, you will inevitably have to wonder: Which is the best web hosting for your website or an online store? The main difficulty arises as there are 1000s of options: paid, free, VPS, foreign. Without experience, it is difficult to understand what type of hosting to use ? virtual, VPS, dedicated server?
We have prepared a mini-guide to give answers to the basic questions regarding the selection of hosting.
Choosing the Best Web Hosting Company
First of all, you need to decide which hosting company you have to work with, and only then choose specific conditions (plans, type, location, characteristics) of using its resources.
Pay attention to the following paramaters-
- Specialization. It is recommended to choose companies for which hosting is their primary activity.
- Form of ownership, availability of office, landline telephone in the settlements where there is a representative office of the company. Studying this information will help to make sure that the host is not a one-day host and you can trust it.
- The period of existence, the appearance of the site, the date of registration of the domain, the number of supported payment methods ? all this helps to form a more or less objective perception regarding the reliability of the host.
After selecting several options for the above parameters, you can begin to study them more deeply, including from the point of view of technical details of the organization of work.
Best Web Hosting: Location of Data Centers
The closer the data centers to users, the faster they get access to sites hosted on servers. Ideally, if the hoster offers the services of a distributed network of data centers and technology for accelerated delivery of content based on CDN (Content Delivery Network ? ?content delivery network?). However, the very presence of servers in close proximity to clients does not guarantee stable operation.
Requirements that Data Centers must meet:
- It is worth giving preference to the new infrastructure since it should be laid a large capacity. However, do not forget about the problems of growth ? any project needs time to debug.
- Servers must have good connectivity. It depends on the number and quality of Internet channels and is checked using the ping command.
- Data centers should be equipped with additional means of ensuring fault tolerance ? for example, by connecting via several transmission channels of electricity.
If we are talking about purchasing a dedicated server, then it is useful to first visit the data center to study the organization of its work and the security system. It is unlikely that someone will do so in reality, but if the big money invested in the project is at stake, then this is quite a reasonable approach.
Best Web Hosting: Technical Support Plays an Important Role
To evaluate the work of technical support, you need to face it in practice. Feedback from other users and various reviews can provide information for thought, but do not blindly trust them- you will always see the situation on one side only.
Criteria to pay attention to:
- Operating mode ? should be around the clock, at least through separate channels.
- Communication methods. It?s good when technical support can be contacted through mail, instant messengers, or online chat. The main thing is that everything really works.
- Accounting applications. If you leave a request, it is advisable that it be duplicated along with all correspondence by e-mail. This avoids the situation when you and a technical support specialist misunderstood each other that sometimes ends in financial losses.
When choosing a web host, carefully look at what technical support services are included in the tariff. For example, the minimum tariffs for shared hosting can only support through tickets, and the maximum ? online chats, Skype, phone calls, etc.
Best Web Hosting: Reviews From Other Users
Not all reviews need to be taken into account. They can be bought, offended, incompetent, simply inadequate. For example, someone bought a VPS but could not configure it, and technical support for this requested additional money. There may be a reason for righteous anger and reports of fraud, but first, you need to find out all the details of the situation ? in most reviews, there are very few specifics.
Read the recommendations for choosing to host on the forums devoted to CMS, which you are going to use to create a site. This will bring much more practical benefits than any ratings, tops, and reviews.
You can choose a good hoster using the link ?rating + recommendations on forums + personal verification?. Therefore, it is very important that the hosting provider provides free test access for at least 7 days, ideally for 30 days. During this time, you can really assess how much the site is working, and how much it is idle due to various hosting problems.
Choosing The Type of Hosting- What Are They?
Hosting is a general concept for space where the future site will be hosted. It includes several technical solutions that differ in cost and purpose.
After choosing a host, you have to choose between types of hosting ? and for this, you need to know what they are, what they offer, which one to use.
Shared hosting is the most common and economical type of hosting on which the site is hosted. This is a special section on the server, which the hoster allocates for your and other sites, they all use the same system resources of one server.
The main features of shared hosting are the placement of your site on one server along with hundreds and thousands of other sites and the absence of the need to configure something manually. This is the simplest and cheapest solution to launch a project on the Internet.
- Favorable low cost, ~ 1 $ / month.
- Administration is entirely on the side of the hosting provider.
- Providing a hosting control panel ? ISPmanager, Parallels Plesk or cPanel.
- Technical support that is ready to answer any questions regarding the site?s performance.
- A large number of pre-installed applications ? for example, a set of CMS engines that are deployed on a hosting in one click.
- Creation and storage of site backups on the host side.
- Possible problems with access to the site and its loading speed due to the greed of the hoster, which hosts more projects on one server than it can handle.
- The collective responsibility that manifests itself in blocking sites by IP address: if your server neighbors have violated the law, then you will be blocked simply because of imperfect technology.
Shared hosting is great for small sites, however, there are situations where projects with thousands of visitors work fine on it. The result depends on who the resources will be shared with. Shared hosting can produce very good results in terms of performance, because, for example, it is designed to host 1000 sites, and so far only 200 are working on it, of which almost no one goes to 100, that is, does not create a load. However, this is a rare situation. Therefore, for medium and large projects, you need to choose other solutions.
Virtual Private Server
A virtual dedicated server (VPS) is a virtual dedicated physical space. In fact, this is a transition between shared hosting and a dedicated physical server. The hoster provides you with everything you need, but some work may already become your area of ??responsibility. Therefore, to configure VPS special skills are already required ? or at least time to read forums and manuals. This is the best choice both for new sites and for promoted projects with traffic up to 5 thousand/person per day.
- When paying a tariff, you clearly understand what services you will receive. If on shared hosting the available space or download speed can change due to the actions of neighbors, then there is no connection on the VPS.
- Full control over the paid part of the server.
- High level of security in comparison with shared hosting.
- Low price when it comes to large projects: online stores and sites with thousands of pages are cheaper to place on VPS, rather than at maximum hosting rates.
- Freedom begets responsibility: full control implies that you yourself can adjust everything. The host gives access to part of the server and makes sure that it works. The rest is your problem.
- High price when used to host small projects. Need a simple business card site or landing page ? take shared hosting, VPS is useless.
The advantages and disadvantages of VPS demonstrate for which projects it is reasonable to use this approach to site placement. Making a large online store or information portal ? go for VPS. Starting a personal blog or a business website of a company ? start with shared hosting resources.
A physical dedicated server is the most expensive and powerful option for hosting a site. It is a rental of a separate server (or a whole cluster), on which there is no one but you. The entire setup at the same time falls on the buyer, although you can entrust it with the technical support of the hoster, but only as additional paid services.
The advantages and disadvantages are the same as those of the VPS, only without any restrictions. The server is completely at your disposal, you can configure it and use it as you want. To work with a dedicated server requires qualified professionals.
The purpose of dedicated servers is the same ? the creation of large projects that lack resources even VPS. It is unlikely that an ordinary user will sweep at this scale.
Paid or Free? Which Hosting to Choose?
If you are creating a project that other people will go to, then there are two options ? paid hosting for free CMS or website builder with hosting out of the box. In both cases, you have to pay for the operation of the service, but in exchange for the money, you get stable operation of the servers, high speed of loading the site, and high-quality technical support.
When paying for hosting services, you can count on receiving the resources indicated in the hosting plans. Paid offers also allow you to make a choice between different types of site placement; free hosting can only be virtual.
You can use free hosting services on an ongoing basis only for verification or as a workout. The main disadvantages of such proposals are serious restrictions (there is little space, no access to the code, advertising, it is impossible to connect your domain, etc.). If the hoster offers free access, this does not mean that it is trying to trick you and make money in some other way. In most cases, a free tariff is needed so that the user can get acquainted with the capabilities of the hosting / website builder before investing in it.
Domestic or Foreign ? Which is the best web hosting?
When choosing between the best domestic hosting services or foreign hosting providers, you need to answer at least two questions:
- Where is my target audience located?
- Are you ready to interact with the hosting company in a foreign language?
It is not necessary to choose a foreign company even if you are doing an international project and have no problems communicating in English. First, you need to evaluate the advantages and disadvantages of both approaches.
Advantages of domestic hosting:
- the location of the servers next to the potential audience of the site, if we are talking about creating a local rather than an international project;
- compliance with the requirements of the legislation on the storage of personal data of users in the country;
- low prices;
- understanding of the features of runet and user requests;
Not all domestic hosters can boast of a developed network of data centers, including those located in other countries. Business representatives are also concerned about the possibility of unauthorized access and illegal blocking due to imperfect technologies in the execution of court decisions. But the phenomenon cannot be called massive ? the vast majority of sites that do not violate laws do not encounter any problems.
The advantages of foreign hosting:
- the location of the server next to the potential audience of the site, if it comes to creating an international project;
- additional protection against unauthorized access ? including from government officials;
- flexible rates.
The main danger when choosing a foreign hosting company is a decrease in the speed of loading the site due to the remote location of the data centers. If the company has the necessary infrastructure in your area, then this problem will not be. But another may arise ? linguistic. Not all large foreign hosters support the Russian language. This also applies to technical support and various important documents. Another drawback is the higher cost due to the difference in exchange rates. You can find inexpensive options, but domestic companies will offer more options at a comparable cost.
Which Hosting is Better to Choose ? Our Recommendations
SiteGround? Best Web Hosting
SiteGround is the most powerful and high-quality hosting with fast servers located in several countries of the world: UK, USA, Holland, Germany, and Finland. It offers an all-inclusive system that allows you to quickly launch large projects even on dedicated servers. The best part about SiteGround is its amazing 24?7 support.
SiteGround provides shared hosting services, VPS / VDS, and dedicated server rental in Europe and the USA. Supports a one-click installation of nearly two hundred applications, among which there are popular CMS. It features a high level of security and excellent technical support, the work of which is noted in almost all user reviews.
BONUS- You can find some amazing offers of SiteGround here.
Bluehost?is a popular overseas server hosting service in North America. One of the market leaders recommended for creating sites on WordPress, Drupal, and Joomla. It offers the easy installation of a large number of applications, including CMS, and the automatic creation of backups.
One of the main advantages of Bluehost is its high performance and reliability, based on the use of its own technological developments. Files and databases are stored on SSDs. The speed of content delivery to site visitors increases due to free connection to CDN. Servers demonstrate failure-free operation over 99.9% of the time, that is, access to the site is almost never a problem.
BONUS- You can find some amazing offers of BlueHost here.
Best Web Hosting: Final Check List
Use this checklist when you are planning your next hosting purchase. By following the steps, you can answer the question, what kind of service is needed specifically for your project.
- Explore ratings and top hosting collections. You can immediately narrow the circle by adding parameters: only for Russia, for CMS WordPress, etc.
- Choose a provider in the country the site is focused on. If the project is international, you can use foreign hosting, but then you have to put up with English-speaking technical support.
- Before you look at hosting plans, take a look at the company that provides site hosting services. Pay attention to its fame, the location of data centers, reviews of other users, experience in use.
- Decide what resources will be required to create the site, and based on this, select the service: virtual shared hosting, VPS, dedicated server. Most newcomers have enough of the capabilities of conventional shared sharing hosting.
- If there is a free period, use it for testing.
Best Web Hosting: Conclusions and Recommendations
Choosing the best web hosting for your first website can be a very difficult task, so you need to spend some time solving it. No one forbids subsequently to back up the site and move to another web hosting or transfer to the site designer. But, it is better to initially try to choose the right solution.
What type of hosting do we recommend?
Based on personal experience: for a serious website that is promoting and generating revenue, it is best to use VPS hosting ? a fast, powerful, and reliable choice for a reasonable price! Virtual dedicated server (VPS) is the most balanced option for both small young sites and large projects with the traffic of ~ 5 ~ 10 thousand / day. Further ? only the Dedicated Server.
In order not to make a mistake with hosting, you must first determine the parameters of the future site: type, target audience, creation tools. This information will help to quickly identify the circle of the best web hosting companies that meet the criteria.
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