What is a Host?
To use an analogy, a host is like the property where you build a house and your domain is like the address of your new house. In short, it is literally where the files that make up your website are stored.
A Great Online Foundation
As with any establishment, a strong foundation is paramount. In terms of your website I am talking about your hosting account. Important things to consider when it comes to your account include: cost, stability, support and features. Finding the right balance between all these hosting options that matter most is key.
Cost of Hosting
Great hosting should not have to cost you an arm and a leg. However, you should know what the differences are between hosing providers. Knowing what is included with your package and what premium options do they offer is crucial to making an informed decision. At a bare minimum, a hosting account will store your website files as well as any other files you may need to be available online. If you are needing to store some large files, storage may be a feature that you will need to look for.
Hosting Options to look for
Some standard hosting options include increased security, automatic backups, hosting multiple domains, and SSL certificates.
– Helps with keeping others from ruining your site
Automatic backups – This is like Insurance on your new house. Where everything can be brought back even if your site gets deleted or corrupted
Hosting multiple domains – This is like being a property manager and being in charge of many homes or like the manager of an apartment complex
SSL certificates – This is like special swat team for your home that makes sure all financial transactions on your website are legitimate and secure.
Depending on what you are wanting to do with your website (or websites), you will need some of these. However, If you plan to use the WordPress platform, there are plugins that you can install that can take the place (of a few) of these premium options (such as automatic backups)
If you are looking to start a WordPress website, make sure the host you choose openly supports WordPress in their Marketing. This lets you know that if there are any issues they will be familiar with your platform.
While working for clients all over the globe, I have had the opportunity to log into some interesting hosting accounts. The ones that really frustrate me the most lack a cpanel. I have to navigate a labyrinth of pages to get anything done. I believe some hosts do this to make things less “techie”. Honestly it just makes things more complicated because no other host is set up this way.
I have also experienced hosting that does not have the capability to run WordPress. There is specific database software and a coding language called PHP that needs to be installed in the Host’s servers for WordPress to work.
There are 3 Hosting Providers I do recommend.
They seem to have all their bases covered and support seems to better than most.
1. Site Ground
– I use site ground and I absolutely love the ease of use. They typically have great offers around most holidays. I started my account on Cyber Monday and got a great deal. I made my decision to go with Site Ground after doing research for a non-profit on which host would be great to switch to. I compared over 20 leading providers and made my recommendation based off of value of services.
For the money, Not many providers come close to Site Ground. Because I like them so much I started an affiliate relationship with them. If you are interested buying from Site Ground use the banner below and it will help me out with no additional cost to you.
2. HostGator – I do a great deal of work the Members of a site called Learn to Blog. They send their members to HostGator to start services so that they can embark on the wild world of blogging and marketing their particular brand of awesome. This Host does offer all the standard Hosting Options a typical site would need. HostGator is a great budget host that supports WordPress as well as several other content management solutions.
I can honestly say that I have used the majority of their services and understand why they are a leading provider. If you are shopping around for yourself or a friend and see some incredible deal from HostGator, You probably will not regret taking advantage of it later. Here is Learn to Blog’s affiliate link to Host Gator where you can get anywhere between 30% and 50% off of their advertised rates.
3. Blue Host – I am never disappointed when I log into a Blue Host account. The user experience is modern and usually easy to find whatever you are looking for. Setting up a WordPress installation is very simple as is creating email accounts and managing multiple websites. This Host does offer all the standard Hosting Options a typical site might need. I do have an affiliate relationship with Blue Host as well because I just like their style. Use the banner below if you want to discover more or give them a try.