A website consists of a group of files on a computer which is connected to the internet. The computer that stores or "hosts" these files is called a web server. A web server can run Windows, Linux or even the Mac operating system.
When you set out to get your own website, you need to obtain space for the website files on a web server. In other words you must obtain website hosting for your site.
With a lot of computer knowledge and a cable or DSL internet connection, you could host your own website. But for most people, it's best to pay someone for web hosting, someone who knows what they are doing!
When you pay for web hosting, you are paying for:
- The space your files take up on the hard drive of the server. This is referred to as storage space. Nice when a name actually makes sense, isn't it?
- Use of an interface software which allows you to control the functioning and activity of your site easily. The website interface software, often called the control panel, allows you to get information about visitors to your site, move and protect files, and manage email accounts, among other functions.
- The input and output data capacity (via the internet connection) that your site will use. An internet connection is like a highway, only so many cars can be on it at one time or traffic comes to a standstill. With internet connections, only so much data can be flowing in and out at any time, or access to the website can stop. This input and output is referred to as throughput. Throughput is another thing you website hosting costs cover.
There are hundreds of hosting packages available at all different price points. Just search the web for "website hosting." You'll find plenty of offerings.
It can be confusing.
At CircleWebWorks, I encourage my clients to purchase hosting from me. I, in turn, purchase hosting from a large provider, one who offers ultra fast internet connections, dependable state-of-the-art servers, excellent control panel software, and reliable tech support. Host with me and I manage everything about your website hosting, deal with any technical issues, and provide tech support to you. You don't have to worry about calling 800 numbers for support, you just call me, tell me what you want to do, and I'll help you accomplish your goals, painlessly, easily!
When you work with me the server your website will be on uses the Linux operating system, with CPanel web interface control panel. Windows based servers are also available if you specifically require one. I don't put limits on storage space or throughput. If your site needs more than the server you share with my other clients can support, I'll help you find another plan that will work for you.
I bill for website hosting once a year, in advance, for your site hosting. I charge $120 a year for regular HTML sites and $360 a year for CMS sites. Why the big difference? CMS sites use many, many times the storage space and throughput of regular HTML websites. CMS sites also require frequent updates, so I'll constantly monitor your site. CMS clients also require my intervention much more frequently than do my regular HTML site clients.
If you have questions about web hosting, please contact me.