Introduction to Choosing the Right Web Host - Important things to look for from a web host
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Once you have found a web host that seems reliable and has gotten good reviews from their customers, you can then take a look at whether or not they offer the type of features that you would need for your website. Most web hosts offer very similar hosting plans which vary based upon the cost of the plan.
For instance, if you have a small informational website, you would probably choose a nice shared budget hosting plan. Most of the time, these types of plans will offer a domain name, up to 25 MB of disk space, up to 10 email accounts, an FTP account, and basic technical support. This is just a base set of features that you can expect to see from most hosts offering shared hosting.
If you have a larger website which will contain more information and will need database support, you need to find a host which offers more disk space, support for database applications (SQL, mySQL, etc.), better technical support, higher bandwidth, and sub-domain capabilities. Obviously, a plan with these features will cost a bit more than a hosting plan appropriate for a small website, but you'll find it is well worth it.
One thing you need to keep in mind is how much traffic your website will be getting per month. If the site you run is just an informational site which will get very little traffic, you may want to use free hosting. If you run a large e-commerce site which will get thousands of visitors per month, you may need a plan which offers you more bandwidth.
You need to keep in mind that if you reach your plan's maximum bandwidth usage for the month, your host will either shut your site down for the rest of the month or charge you extra each month. These extra charges can be very expensive. Make sure to get a hosting plan with enough bandwidth.
In part two of this article, I will describe the different types of hosting available in more depth. This will further help you to discover the best web hosting for your particular needs.
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