A web hosting service is a type of Internet hosting service that allows you to make your website available and accessible via the World Wide Web. But how do you know which web hosting service is right for you? And what are the legal pitfalls you need to look out for?
Typically, a web hosting company provides you with space on a server in their data centre which a you either own or lease from them. Web hosting companies usually offer four main hosting tiers, starting with the least complex (and the cheapest), shared hosting plans, all the way to co-location; in between are Virtual Private Servers (otherwise known as VPS) and dedicated hosting packages.
Web hosting services are different from a connectivity services. These allow you to get on-line in the first place via an Internet Service Provider, or ISP. However, you can often find that the same company offers both web hosting and connectivity services.
Hosting your website is not as straightforward as you may think. There are thousands of web hosting companies around the world offering their services to organisations and private users. Anyone can start a web hosting company from their rooms or garage. In fact from anywhere they can get access to the Internet, a website and at least a reseller account to start their hosting business. Many hosting businesses are here today and gone tomorrow. Providing the availability and accessibility to the World Wide Web is one thing. But, making sure that good customer support is available around the clock when things go wrong requires a strong business infrastructure which not everyone can deliver.
Web Hosting Terms and Conditions
Shopping around for the best deal is a daunting task. But price comparison websites can help you to compare the features and benefits of top-selling web services. Think carefully about your own business or personal requirements. Make sure you read and look out for the following key points in the web service contract / terms and conditions.
(a) availability and downtime;
(b) amount of storage space and bandwidth;
(c) updates, how the web hosting provider handles them, and whether they are free of charge;
(d) security and access rules;
(e) ability to transfer the website to another host free of charge
(f) whereabouts of server to follow Data Protection Rules
Best Web Hosting Providers
So, we've shown that value for money isn't necessarily just going for the cheapest deal. Look out for additional features across the different packages offered such as money back guarantee, a control panel, online store, site builder, support (either on the phone or live chat), email marketing, anti-spam, loyalty discounts, flexibility, scalability, and more.