In order to understand the different types of web hosting plans that you can find out there, it is essential to first get an appreciation of how web hosting works. You are probably here because you have been carrying out research on the best companies with which you can host your website, right? Along the way you have probably come across companies such as DreamHost, Bluehost, HostGator, Network Solutions and GoDaddy. These are the big names in the web hosting and related services field.
For beginners, understanding the differences between the available types of hosting plans can be difficult. Things are not helped by the fact that each of the types can have sub categories. Web hosting services providers have adopted arbitrary naming standards when it comes to hosting plans. Whatever name companies such as Bluehost, HostGator, DreamHost and GoDaddy have given for their products, traditional web hosting comes in three basic types:
So, what differentiates these hosting plan types and which one is the best for you?
As mentioned earlier, when you sign up for a hosting plan with a company such as Bluehost, you are essentially renting space on their servers. It is the nature of the space that you wish to rent that determines the type of hosting plan that you end up choosing.
Shared hosting is, arguably, the most popular web hosting plan type across the globe. This popularity can be attributed to the fact that it is also the cheapest. At Bluehost, the plan starts at $2.95 (for 36 months.)
Sharing a server with thousands of people may be the cheapest option, but it is not always the right one. To those who do not wish or are not able to share server space with other people, Web Hosting Services Providers offer Dedicated Hosting.
Virtual Private Servers are sometimes referred to as Virtual Dedicated Servers. Virtual Private Servers are servers that emulate dedicated servers. As with Shared Hosting, VPSs are still housed on shared physical infrastructure.
As mentioned at the beginning, the choices that you make with regards to a web hosting plan type will depend on your unique needs. Beginners often make the mistake of choosing the cheapest web hosting option that they can find without caring much about the effect that that will have on the performance and delivery of their websites. While it is not possible for us to prescribe which particular web hosting plan type is best for you without knowledge of what your specific needs are, we can go over each option in detail:
We have already discussed how dedicated hosting gives you an unparalleled level of flexibility. With it, you are free to manage your site however you want. You should, therefore, have the relevant technical skills to be able to set up and manage a dedicated server.
Virtual Private Hosting strives for a place somewhere in the middle between Shared and Dedicated Hosting. It offers all the benefits of having a Dedicated Server, including the flexibility that comes with having your own virtualized server environment.
And to the question, “Which web hosting plan type is best for you?” The answer is, as it is with many things, “It depends on what your needs are…”
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