I know how difficult it can be to choose a web host.  In fact in my years of being online, I have cycled through at least five different hosts.  Choosing a good host can be a daunting task.  Here, I will outline all of the things that you need to consider before purchasing hosting for your website.

First off, let me explain the different types of hosting solutions available.

Shared hosting is the most common type of hosting that you will see, mainly because it’s cheap.  It means that tons of websites are hosted on the same server, which isn’t a good thing.  If one website uses up too many resources, it can bring down the entire server – with your website in the sinking boat.

Another option is dedicated hosting.  This means that you’re basically “renting” your own server.  So, you don’t have to worry about anyone else using up your resources since you will not be sharing the space with anyone else.  This is also an ideal choice if you want to have full control over your server and the software installed on it.

Lastly, there’s VPS hosting.  VPS stands for Virtual Private Server.  A VPS means that you share the same hardware (server) as others, but you get your own partition (piece) of the server with your own operating system.  It offers a lot of the same benefits as a dedicated server does, except you physically don’t have the server to yourself.  This is like the next step up from shared hosting.

So, what are the different features offered with each?  Here’s a basic breakdown.

 

Email Servers

Dedicated and VPS hosting give you access to your own email server for your domain, thus bringing beefed up security and more functionality.

Platform Control

For those of you who don’t know, platform control refers to operating systems – in this case, it means that with dedicated and VPS hosting, you can choose what kind of software goes on your server.

Performance and Security

Shared servers are best for smaller websites that do not need many features or strict security.

Dedicated and VPS hosting allow for a lot of server set up and customization options with the added benefit of increased performance.  With these hosting plans, you have full reign over most aspects of the server.  These are best if you need your websites to perform well with a great deal of security features.