The hosting choices available to a person are enough to overwhelm a beginner. There are options for generic websites, business websites, blog websites, and podcasting / media websites, to name a few.
Each option has features geared towards different goals, and worse, each option has slight differences between different hosting providers. Let’s take a look at some of the different types of hosting packages available, and explore which one is best for your needs. Some people will have a very specific website goal, and will easily be able to identify what package they need.
Others will have multi-purpose websites, or unique websites, and may have a harder decision.
- Generic Website Hosting
- Most web providers offer just a basic hosting plan. They usually offer several tiers of hosting, from several dollar a month budget hosting to more expensive but faster and nicer hosting. Ultimately, this will work for anything, and isn’t a bad option. However other hosting packages may better suit your needs. Basic hosting is usually targeted at personal websites or other simple, static sites.
- Blog Hosting
- Blog hosting is specifically geared at blogs (obviously), usually with a specific platform, such as WordPress, in mind. It will usually come with WordPress or other blogging software pre-installed, so you don’t have to do it. You will usually have some capability to store other files, like a static home page, but it will be geared towards the blogging software. This is an easy way for someone who doesn’t want to get too involved with the behind-the-scenes server stuff to start a blog.
- ECommerce Hosting
- ECommerce hosting is designed for websites that will be selling things. It usually includes integration with some kind of pre-built ecommerce software. It also has other security features, like an SSL certificate, so you can collect confidential payment information without security risks.
- Podcast Hosting
- Podcasts, whether audio or video, take up a lot of storage. If you’re planning on hosting a podcast (basically an internet radio or TV show), you need a lot of bandwidth and storage. These plans will be designed for hosting and transferring large media files.
- Dedicated Server
- Most of the above types of plans are based on managed hosting, in which you share a server with many other websites. This saves on costs and allows for relatively good hosting to be offered at just a few dollars per month, but it also means there are a lot of limitations on your hosting plan. If you need full control of your server for whatever reason, then you want to go with dedicated hosting or dedicated servers. This means that you have full control of an actual physical server, and you can do whatever you need with it. You will have much higher limits on storage and bandwidth (if any) than with the cheaper plans. Usually only large businesses or very popular websites need this, but it is something some people need.
- Grid Hosting
- Grid Hosting is a compromise between managed and dedicated hosting. With grid hosting, your site is sandboxed in its own virtual machine, just like with managed hosting. However, unlike the former, the virtual machine is supported by many different servers. This means that if your site suddenly becomes popular and gets a huge traffic boost, you will have the physical server capacity to support it.
These are just a few of the more popular of the many different types of hosting available. The best hosting for you will depend on your needs, and the type of site you want. Evaluating your needs and comparing offerings across multiple hosting providers will ensure that you get the best hosting package for your individual needs.
This Post is Written by Kirsten Ramsburg. Kirsten Ramsburg is a senior web content writer for a web hosting reviews company, WebHostingSearch.com