Web hosting is essential for everyone who wants to build a website. There are a lot of hosting providers providing hosting service. Some provide quality service, some not. Some cheat customers. There are some factors you should keep in mind while buying a hosting. The factors are described below.
Let, the required space for the files be 25MB. The site has a database whose size is 1MB. So, the required hosting space is (25+1)MB = 26MB.
Most hosting providers claim to provide unlimited space. For most providers, it’s not true. They close accounts for excess space use.
Actually, if you want to run an ordinary site, you don’t have to worry about space.
The measurement of data transfer between server & client PC or another server is called bandwidth. When we visit a website using any browser, the browser downloads the whole webpage with all files contained in that page to our PC & show it. It causes data transfer from server to our PC. Again, when we upload image, video or any file to a site, it causes data transfer from PC to server. These data transfers are called bandwidth.
Bandwidth is measured in megabyte (MB) or gigabyte (GB) per month.
The required bandwidth for a site can be measured easily.
Consider, the size of pages of your site is 100KB in average. You expect 2,000 visits per day.
You have an ebook on your site for download whose size is 2MB. You expect that it’ll be downloaded 100 times per month.
Your site has a member section where members can upload profile pictures not bigger than 500KB. You expect that 30 people will upload profile pictures every month.
So, the required bandwidth for the site is-
For page visits: (100*2000*30) KB/Month = 6000000 KB/Month = 5859.3 MB/Month
For ebook download: (2*100) MB/Month = 200 MB/Month
For image upload: (500*30) KB/Month = 15,000 KB/Month = 14.64 MB/Month
Total: (5859.3 + 200 + 14.64) MB/Month = 5.93 GB/Month
So, the required bandwidth for the site is 5.93 GB/Month
Don’t fool yourself believing hosting providers claim on unlimited bandwidth. For a simple site, bandwidth is generally not a big issue to worry about.
Server uptime is one of the most important factors in web hosting. When the server PC is connected to the internet & functions properly & the sites hosted in it remains accessible on the internet, then the server is called ‘up’ & the time is called ‘server uptime’.
The time when the server remains inaccessible is called server downtime. During downtime, no one can visit sites hosted on that server.
Because of necessity of server & network maintenance & various software updates, it’s impossible to keep the server up all the time, But the downtime can be minimized by proper maintenance.
Most providers guarantee 99.99% uptime which means the server can be down for max. 43.2 Minutes per month. But don’t believe them before testing it.
There are a lot of sites providing server monitoring service. They monitor the server & alert website owners when the site goes down. You can try pingdom.com for monitoring your server.
Server speed is another important factor. When someone opens a site on a browser, the browser sends a request to the server to send the webpage with all necessary files included in the webpage. After receiving the request, the server executes necessary processes & sends the requested files. If the server PC has low resources (processor, RAM etc) or a lot of sites hosted in the same server, then processing browser’s requests takes time & the site loads slowly. Visitors as well as search engines don’t like slow sites. So the site loses both traffic & search engine position.
There are a lot of tools to measure server speed. Google it & you’ll find them.
Don’t forget the importance of a good customer service. It’s really intolerable when you buy a service but don’t get any help from the service provider when needed. So check the quality of their customer service before choosing a web hosting.
Finally, there are a lot of low quality hosting providers with attractive slogans & ads, You must educate yourself to find a quality hosting. You can try top 10 hosting list to find a quality hosting for your site.