Web Hosting Tutorial For Newbies

Web Hosting Tutorial
If you’re in business, you need to be part of the largest information and advertising resource in the world – the Internet. Since the Internet is a collection of networked computer systems, it may sound imposing to the non-technical person.

Additionally, it can be challenging. This web host tutorial for newbies will explain web hosting in layman’s terms. When it’s all said and done, you’ll have a better grasp of web hosting and what it entails.

To find the right hosting provider, you need a plan before you start the vetting process. Once you have prepared your plan, your business can be online in as little as 10 minutes! Of course, that might not be a fully-fledged online business, but it’s a start.

Planning

Start by defining why you are presenting your business online. This objective will guide your decisions through the rest of the elements and ensure you’re making the right choices to achieve your goal.

Avoid a goal like: Get more customers. The Internet is a vast collection of servers, computers and nodes. Consequently, a childcare center in New Jersey is not going to benefit from parents in Chicago looking for childcare.

Strive to build SMART goals:

For example, an off the road, out of the way specialty seafood restaurant (let’s call them Seafood Sal’s) may want their objective to be:

“Offer our menu and provide for an interactive way to get directions from any location to our restaurant to increase return customers by 10% within 6 months”.

That SMART Goal breaks down like this:

Once you have your goal, refer to it in every other step you take in order to ensure you stay on target. There are a lot of options on the Internet, if you come across one that does not support your goal – drop it and find one that does.

Web Hosting Tutorial - Shared Hosting

Like most, you may be best suited to start off with a Shared Hosting Account

These accounts are approximately $10 to $20 per month and are more than sufficient to start with, (when your website traffic explodes, you can always upgrade).

Shared Hosting Accounts Have Several Primary Elements:

Disk Space

The amount of storage space you have for pictures, web pages, databases, and email messages. Web content is generally not high capacity, so 10 to 15 GBs of storage space should be enough.

Data Transfer (Bandwidth)

Represents the amount of data visitors to your site are downloading per month. 500GBs or more is going to be plenty to start.

The amount of storage space you have for pictures, web pages, databases, and email messages. Web content is generally not high capacity, so 10 to 15 GBs of storage space should be enough.

Unlimited Bandwidth

Even the Shared Hosting Plans that state or claim unlimited Bandwidth – come with certain restrictions. Usually, you will need to read the small print concerning Usage Policies, to understand those restrictions. This is especially true if you are planning on your site increasing in traffic. Or, if your site has traffic spikes.

Email Accounts

This represents the number of individual email accounts you can assign to your domain. Most hosts are offer unlimited email accounts. That means you, your account manager, your employees, etc., can all have separate and private email accounts.

Email Forwarders

Not to be confused with Email Accounts, Email Forwarders represent additional email addresses that go to one email account.

For example, you can have [email protected] as your email account and then have [email protected], [email protected] and [email protected] all send their emails to your [email protected] email account. The forwarded emails are not considered separate email accounts.

Web Hosting Tutorial - Databases

A method of storing information and interacting with online applications like a Content Management System. The most popular databases are MySQL, Oracle 12c, Microsoft SQL Server, PostgreSQL, MongoDB, and MariaDB. You likely won’t need more than 10 or so databases to run your business applications. Duly note , some web hosts do offer unlimited databases. But again, rea their usage policies.

Domain Name

A domain name is what people will type into their browsers to get to your site. Some shared hosting accounts will allow you to have more than 1 domain attached to your hosting account. This is a great feature to look for if you expect to have more than 1 domain name tied to your business. However, in most cases for your business will only maintain 1 domain name.

Sub Domains

Sub domains are domains are needed in such scenarios as having a eCommerce store, a blog, or an intranet, separate from your primary domain. Or, maybe you are a web designer and you create subdomains for your clients. Let’s say your primary domain is MyDomain.com.

Your subdomains would look like this:

eCommerce.MyDomain.com
Intranet.MyDomain.com
Blog.MyDomain.com
WebDesignClient1.MyDomain.com
WebDesignClient2.MyDomain.com

Free Domain

I don’t recommend that you take advantage of any free domain offers no matter what hosting company is offering it. Typically, the terms state the domain must stay with that hosting company.

Which means you will not be able to move that domain to another registrar later if you decide to switch hosting. Standard domain names are priced between $9.00 and $20.00 per year per domain, so it is not a significant expense to have a separate account for your hosting and domain name registration.

Support

A good web host will offer technical support to all of their customers regardless of size. Try to assess testimonials, search the company name online to see if there are other articles about their business history and assess their ability to provide support.

Key Features for Non-Technical People

Look for a host that offers additional programs for free (sometimes called “auto installed) to manage your website content like Joomla, Drupal, and/or WordPress. These are free content management systems (CMS) that allow you to build your website just like you were in a word processor.

You can upload pictures, write your pages and change the layout of your site without knowing a lick of HTML (the programming language the Internet is mostly based on). By researching and reviewing potential web hosting companies in light of your SMART plant, you will stay on target and get the best hosting plan available for your business.
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Web hosting services come in many different forms.; if you’re not sure of what you need, speak to one of our Tech Support personnel to help you figure out your needs.