At the end of 1995, there were approximately 16 million internet users — 0.4% of the world’s population. In March 2021, that number is over 5 billion — over 65% of the people on the planet.
With so many people online, having a website for your business is critical. But some businesses still hesitate at the cost of web hosting. Let’s look at what you should expect to pay.
Types of Web Hosting Services
There are several types of web hosting services:
- Shared hosting
- Virtual Private Server (VPS)
- Dedicated hosting
- Cloud hosting
- Specialty hosting
Each has advantages but some cost more than others. You don’t necessarily need the most expensive hosting for your site.
Shared hosting is the most affordable option for your website. With this type of service, several websites get hosted on the same server.
The websites are independent of one another so from your visitors’ perspectives, they won’t know other sites are on the same server. But by sharing the server’s resources, hosting providers can keep the cost down.
Virtual Private Server
Virtual private servers, known as VPS, also share the server’s resources but each user gets a fixed share. And there are typically fewer users on each server than with shared hosting.
VPS hosting is a good choice if you have more traffic but don’t want to make the jump to the cost of a dedicated server.
A dedicated server is exactly what it sounds like — all of the server’s resources are dedicated to a single user. Nobody else shared the server so you have full access to everything.
Dedicated servers are ideal for higher-traffic sites or sites that need a lot of customization. You can configure the server however you want since you’re the only one using it but expect to pay quite a bit more.
Cloud hosting means you’re using servers based in “the cloud”. Instead of a single computer serving your website, a network of servers share the load.
The biggest benefit of cloud hosting is its elasticity. If your website suddenly has a big spike in traffic, the cloud provider can assign more resources to your server automatically so your site stays online.
Specialty Hosting Services
Specialty web hosting offers servers configured for particular uses. For example, some hosts offer WordPress hosting that has servers pre-configured to give WordPress-based sites the best performance.
Minecraft hosting is another common type of specialty web host, with servers pre-configured to work with the Minecraft video game.
How Much Do You Need to Spend
The question of how much you need to spend on hosting comes down to a few things, including:
- How much traffic you expect to get
- Whether the traffic likely to grow significantly in the next 6 to 12 months
- Whether you need to run any custom scripts or software on your server
Expect to spend $3-$15 per month on shared hosting, $10 to $100 on a VPS, $100-plus on dedicated hosting, and $30-plus on specialty hosting. Cloud hosting varies depending on the resources you need but it starts as low as $5 per month.
Many hosting companies, like Domaincot.com, include a free domain with their service so that can save you a few dollars a year as well.
The Cost of Web Hosting Is an Investment
Think of the cost of web hosting as an investment in your business. If you spend $50 per month on hosting but your website generates several new customers every month, that $50 is worth spending.
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