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How Do You Choose a Web Hosting Service

Aug 23, 2008
You've sweated and worked to make your webpage exactly what you want, you have all your files ready, so how do you get it onto the internet? To make your webpage appear on the internet you need to find a web hosting service. It's not as bad as it sounds, there are many choices available in a web hosting service. However, before you purchase a web hosting service you need to identify what you want from the service. You need to make choices about bandwidth, e-mail boxes and server storage space. It sounds very confusing, doesn't it, let's see if we can clear it up a bit.

Web Hosting Service Bandwith

Bandwidth is a strange concept for those of us who didn't grow up in the digital age. If you remember your Commodore Computer, then this explanation is for you. Bandwidth is your traffic. How much, and how many people are visiting your site, or in a car analogy, how many people are entering your parking lot. For you who are more digitally inclined, it's the amount of bits that are transferred between the server and whoever is visiting the site. To put it into prospective so you can make an estimate, a MP3 song is about 4 MB (megabytes) or 4000 bytes, a movie is around 900 MB or 9000 bytes.

Judge the size of each page of your website, by adding up the amount of bytes (don't forget to include your pictures). Each person who visits your website and clicks on that page will use that many bytes. It's going to take a bit of guessing or predicting, but give yourself a little extra, remember you want the extra traffic. So make room for the extra traffic, and monitor your bandwidth. You may need to increase your bandwidth with your web hosting service, and most companies will allow you to go up in bandwidth without much of a problem, but going down in bandwidth can sometimes be tricky.

Web Hosting Service E-Mail Boxes

This one is not going to be overly difficult, you just need to figure out how many people you want to have their own e-mail box at your domain with your web hosting service. If your domain is widgetsunlimited.com, lets say, then you will need to know that joeschmoo@widgetsunlimited.com is one e-mail box, in the view of your web hosting service. Remember to make sure that you have a general e-mail box and give yourself a little room to grow.

Web Hosting Service Server Storage Space

This one is also not very confusing. You need to determine how much space your page will take up on the Web Hosting Service provider's server. You can do this by listing all the items that will go onto the webpage, including pictures. Add up all the bytes in space and that will give you the amount of space you need, at a minimum for your website hosting. Do not make the mistake of buying exactly the amount you calculated. You will be making changes, fixing items, adding items, and other changes to your website, plan ahead. Give yourself additional space in your website hosting plan, to account for additions, changes and upgrades. If you don't give yourself extra space when you decide on a web hosting service you will be sorry in the long run.

Now see, most of that didn't hurt at all, and now you are ready to evaluate web hosting services and decide on a good website hosting plan for you.
About the Author
Bill Protresi is an online providing tips and advice. Visit Bill at his web hosting site
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