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It would not be an exaggeration to say that websites are the best ways to widen your reach and make a global presence. However, just having a website is not enough. It should be easily accessible, uploads quickly and allows you an extended functionality in terms of back-end operations. The hosting plays a key role here. So, you need to keep a number of things in mind while selecting the best hosting provider for your site. Here are a few technical specifications you should know before you finalize a web host.
Storage is the most important feature you should consider while choosing a web hosting. If you are not running an MNC or a super-sized e-commerce business, a few gigabytes should be more than sufficient for your storage. It could even be less if you opt for an HTML site. However, if you are going for a personal site but it has loads of images or videos, then you would need a significantly huge amount of storage. So, it is always better to estimate the total space you would need for your site and then determine the storage you should opt for.
Bandwidth is another important factor to look for while deciding the ideal hosting service for your site. Bandwidth simply means the total amount of data you and your site visitors can upload/download. For example:
Your monthly bandwidth is 20MB and the entire data size of your website is 2 MB. So when you will launch your site initially you will have consumed 2MB of your bandwidth limit (the uploading size of your site).
Consumption- 2MB/Remaining- 18MB
Now assuming that visitors of your site find it irresistible to leave your site without visiting each single page (Voila!) that means each visitor will be downloading 2MB of space. In that first month, you got 9 visitors, each one visiting all the pages of your site.
Consumption-18MB (2MBX9)/Remaining- 0MB
Once you have consumed your entire bandwidth, the hosting provider will either not allow more visitors or will start charging extra for each visitor. The same is true in case if you would like to upload any new content. So, you should try to have a fair estimate of the number of visitors you expect or receive every month and the amount of data you would like to upload. It is especially true if your site belongs to the media industry and is accessed widely. Similarly, if you have a blog that you upload frequently using heavy data or many graphics then also you should be considerate about the bandwidth allocation of your hosting plan. Same is true in the case of the sites that are heavily supported by media like videos.
There are possibilities that you may start with the one site and then may add another. Depending on different factors you may keep on increasing the number of the sites. Now, having a separate hosting account for each site would be a trouble and can shoot up your budget. Ensure that you hosting account allows for hosting multiple domains. Though most of the decent hosting plans do offer this facility, there are limits on the number of domains. Multiple is a vague term. It could be 3 or it could be 10. So, ask your web host clearly about the total number of domains you can host on one account. Always prefer some margin.
For example, if you need 3 domains then you should check the plan that allows for 5 domains and if the cost difference isn’t much, go for the latter. In your admin panel, you will see a section to add the domain name and choose associated sub-folders. Sam applies on for sub-domains.
If you register with reputed web hosts and opt for a fairly decent hosting plan, then you can get domain-specific email account too. If your plan allows that then check the number of such accounts you are entitled to set up and the specific interface. You may want to go for the multiple interfaces to select the most appropriate ones. Be more specific and also ask for the integration with Google Apps. Whether it is only POP or do they offer IMAP for receiving the mail, also plays a great role.
A good web host also provides you a sufficient database on the back end. However, you should ensure that the database should comply with your business requirements. MySQL is the most widely popular database offered by the web hosts and offers a fairly sufficient space too. Apart from that SQL Server, PostgreSQL and Oracle can also be a good choice depending upon your requirements.