Stepping into the world of web hosting but with a mind full of questions? Worry not, for this blog is a concoction of just the right amounts of knowledge you would need to understand the fundamentals of web hosting and how things run behind the scene.

Let’s begin with the definition of web hosting.

In a nutshell, web hosting is the practice or business of providing storage space for websites thereby making them available to be viewed by internet users.

You store all the files and data required to run and operate the website in a web hosting server. Generally, from a business perspective, web hosting may also refer to the company which provides the hosting service – storing your website, providing internet connectivity, database etc.

So basically it’s a data center then?

No it isn’t. The hosting part is handled by a server of the hosting company. You are leasing a space in that server for your website. In some cases, you can have the whole server for your website alone. We’ll get into that later. So this server essentially holds important data of your website.

So doesn’t that mean the server should be protected?

Why, yes of course… which brings us to the answer to the first question – Data center. The server is housed at a secure facility to protect it from unauthorized accesses and other threats. This facility is what we call the data center.

Types of Web Hosting

Now that you have an idea what web hosting is, it’s time to introduce you to the various types of web hosting.

In general, there are 4 types.

  • Shared hosting
  • Virtual Private Server (VPS) hosting
  • Dedicated hosting
  • Cloud hosting

Basically, all four serves the same purpose of storing websites but differs in the features. Each of the four will differ in the amount of control of the user over the website, the storage space for the website, the bandwidth, server performance and even reliability of the service.

Let’s get into the details.

Shared Hosting

Shared hosting is where your website is one of many websites hosted by a single server. It’s more like a building where tenants lease apartments. There’ll be many tenants in the building with their own space to live. Similarly, your website will have its own space in the server. The catch is that your website will have to share the server resources with the other websites.

It’s an entry level hosting solution, the least expensive of the four, and the ideal choice for small websites with a limited amount of traffic. The cons include the ‘bad neighbor effect’. This is when other websites in the server utilizes a lot of the server’s resources leaving your website with only a little to work with. This affects the website’s performance. You also don’t have access to the server. A shared environment generally won’t be able to handle higher traffic.

Virtual Private Server (VPS) Hosting

Virtual Private Server or VPS essentially means a virtual server which will be hosting a website. You are probably wondering how a virtual server can do this, because it’s well… a ‘virtual’ server.

Because, this virtual server is part of a physical server. So your website is technically hosted on that physical server but in a virtual partition. That virtual partition is what we generally refer to as virtual server, because it does resemble a dedicated server.

The hosting environment is secure, and you can also use your own copy of an operating system of your choice. The VPS also gives you a super user level access to this instance so that you can add and use programs that are compatible with that OS. This is an ideal option for those users who cannot invest in a dedicated server or have a mid-scale website with only a moderate amount of traffic.

The ability of VPS systems to handle traffic spikes can be limited. But you can upgrade the hosting package to acquire more features for your growing website. It costs a bit more than shared hosting, and considerably less than dedicated hosting.

Dedicated Server Hosting

Like its name suggested, dedicated server hosting service is when a full hosting solution completely dedicated to your website. Your site will be hosted on what we refer to as the dedicated server, and there will only be your website in the server. This means all of the server’s resources are at your website’s beck and call. You get more control over the server compared to the other types of hosting. Most dedicated hosting packages come with premium technical support and server performance.

However, this should make something else quite obvious. It affects your wallet. Dedicated hosting is the most expensive option out of the four types as it offers the best server performance, technical support and control. The price is of course justifiable. But this level of service is ideal only for big websites with a large amount of traffic.

Cloud Hosting

When it comes to high traffic and frequent traffic spikes, no other hosting is as good as cloud hosting. You’d have realized from its name that it is a cloud computing technology; and at its best. It’s also referred to as cluster server hosting or server-on-demand hosting.

It’s where multiple computers connected as a network (called a cloud) collaborates in operations, data transfer and storage thereby acting as a single super computer. So essentially, your website is hosted on multiple machines in the cloud. Now you know why spiking traffic isn’t an issue in cloud hosting.

Apart from its ability to handle high traffic, cloud hosting also isn’t confined to a single data center. The web hosting features like FTP, email services etc. are taken care of by different servers in the cloud. The point is, even if one server fails, your website will not be affected at all, as another server will take over. Another advantage is that the hosting solution is pay-per-use, meaning you will be charged only for what you use.

A dynamic, scalable, and robust solution cloud hosting is getting more popular each year with more users starting to realize the cloud’s potential. Add and remove resources on the go without compromising control and flexibility. The only con is that the reliability of a cloud solution depends on the solution provider. Some solutions may not give root access to change server settings despite having a high price tag.

That takes care of the hosting types. Now to address the most common confusion about web hosting.

Domain name and web hosting are sometimes confused to be the same

They aren’t.

Basically, a domain is the name of your website while a web host is the home of your website. The domain is more like the address to this home and not the home itself. Web host is the space where your website resides (in a server of course). Now that you understood the difference between domain name and web hosting, let’s explore a bit more about domain.

These are 3 fundamental things you should know about domain names:

  • The name should be unique and relevant, and should relate to what your website does or have in it. (For example, if it’s a blog site, is a good domain name)
  • Purchase and register this domain
  • Point the domain to your web hosting solution by changing the DNS

To know more about the significance of domains in the digital realm, point and tap here – domain registration


This is just a 101 guide to give you just the right amount of knowledge you need to find the right hosting for your website, or to give the hosting business a shot. Feel free to go through this one to know how to nail an ideal web hosting service. It’s sure to come in handy.

Written by: Shibu Kumar

Getting an online business off the ground takes the right mix of research, planning and execution. Of course, not every business will make it. And there is a lesson to be learned from it.

Regardless of the business you do, you need the right host for your domain.

Just like websites are important for online businesses, a good domain and a better hosting service are important for websites as well. The key to conquering the internet lies in the brand name, and maybe a few other things. But let’s talk about brand name for now.

To show the digital world that you are a leader in a particular niche, you have to dedicate a lot of time thinking about every aspect that concerns your brand. Considering the fact that you are entering a hypercompetitive business world, you have to think out of the box to stay relevant or even stand out from the rest of them. For this, even the smallest, seemingly irrelevant things can give you a positive surprise.

Let’s start with the reason how online businesses exist – the website.

Every Company needs a Website

Even if the company doesn’t directly make money from its website, it still needs a website. Reason? Web presence, of course. The website can be a key tool to market the business and expand the customer base. Most business people know about the aspect of marketing with a website. And this could be the reason why they put more focus on marketing rather than establishing the foundation for the website.

The foundation for the Website

The foundation for any website includes:

  • An apt domain name
  • A perfect host

Search engines like Google considers a myriad of factors before ranking a website. Domain is one of those factors. You need to do a bit of thinking to come up with the right domain name for your website, and more research to identify the right web hosting solution for it.

To figure out the right domain name, you need to take a few factors into account.

Focus on the following for starters.

  • How long is the domain name you have in mind?
  • Is it memorable?
  • Is it easy to spell?
  • Does it conform to what your website is about?

You do know that Google regularly updates their ranking algorithms, right? So the questions mentioned above can help you come up with the right domain name that will have a positive effect on your search engine optimization.

Why domain is important for businesses

It establishes credibility – Your own domain name adds to your professional caliber. Visitors actually check the domain name when they are visiting a website they haven’t visited before. Your domain name gives them a good impression conveying that it’s an established business.

It boosts your brand value – The name of your brand or company in your domain name increases brand awareness.

It gives you portability on the internet – With your own domain name and website, you can also port it to the web host you prefer. Sharing someone else’s domain name doesn’t give you the same advantage. You will have to create a new domain name for your website in such a scenario, and in turn lose your visitors, forcing you to work to build traffic again.

It strengthens your SEO strategy – Search engines reward unique domain names rather than subdomains. With your own website and domain name, your business will get the limelight from search engines. Though this isn’t much, it can still be an asset to your SEO efforts.

Domain Registration and Hosting

Once you have a domain, domain registration comes next. The registered domain requires something to keep it alive; the something being the right hosting solution.

The right hosting package makes sure that your online business keeps progressing without hitches.

How? Just imagine this scenario for one.

Your online business has been growing over the years, and you are happy with the success. You have a strong customer base, and new ones coming in on a daily basis. And just when you thought that you’d just become a leader in your niche, your domain expires. You, on the other hand, are on cloud nine, and completely forget to renew it. A competitor grabs your domain, and when you realize what’s happening, you try to buy it back but to no avail.

What then? You will have to settle for a new domain. Years of hard work down the drain, and you start all over again.

A right hosting solution ensures you never have to face that situation.

Hopefully, by now, you have a good idea of the potential of the right domain name and hosting service. Though it requires you to spend a lot of time thinking and researching, it’s an investment that can enhance your online market presence. If it gives your business a good head start, why not give it a go?

Written by: Prashant Thomas