What is web hosting?
It’s actually not unusual for website owners to not know what “web hosting” even is, seeming to be just one more vaguely worded bullet point in the typical lists of services that web developers bombard potential clients with. First of all, any website is just a collection of files–written code in various forms, the written content that appears on the various pages of the site, pictures, video files, and so on.
A web host is simply the computer – the server – upon which all of these files are stored. When someone visits your site, they are directed to the files stored on the computer server, which your web browser accesses and – following the instructions written in the code files – arranges all those different sorts of media into an easy-to-use form: webpages.
It’s ideal to have full control over the contents of your site, so that if you’re not happy with the company who’s hosting your site – maybe they don’t do a good job of keeping their computer servers running well, and the site tends to go down a lot or runs slowly – you can take the collection of files that comprise your site and have another web hosting company store them on their servers. It’s a simple service, but an incredibly important one.
What are the different options for hosting a site?
Different web hosting services typically offer one or more hosting options, with a lot of added bells and whistles that can be confusing. But generally speaking, there are three types of web hosting: shared, VPS (virtual private server), and dedicated.
Shared hosting: A single computer server stores and runs multiple websites. The advantages of shared hosting is that it’s usually the cheapest by far. The problem is, all of the sites are competing for computer resources – memory, processing speed, etc. If one site is extremely busy, the speed and stability of the other sites on the server may suffer – sort of like how when you’re running a really big program on your computer, all the other programs will slow down or even crash. If a site has a serious error that causes the server to stop working, all of the websites on the server won’t work. When you see a 404 error message on your browser, it’s usually because something like this has happened.
VPS (virtual private server) hosting: A virtual private server is very similar to a shared server. Multiple websites are housed on a single server. The key difference is that the server resources are split up evenly between all the sites – essentially divided into blocks. If one site is incredibly busy, it will only max out its own block of processing power and memory, while the others are unaffected. If a site needs more resources to run well, the owner can buy additional blocks of server space.
Dedicated hosting: This is pretty simple – a dedicated server is one that is only running a single site. The entire physical server holds nothing but the information for that one site. This is costly, but necessary for extremely large or busy websites.
What is cloud hosting?
Simply put, a cloud-based server is a form of VPS that doesn’t have a home in just one location. It’s a packaged set of programs that can run on any machine regardless of location. This set of programs includes the ones that run the operating system, and the ones that actually deliver your website (which is just a collection of files, programs and databases) to the internet. We prefer this method because if at any time, the actual hardware that your site is on malfunctions, your site can be moved in an instant without any kind of noticeable interruption.
Why have Creative California host your website?
It’s not enough to have a great-looking and responsive website. The best-built site won’t do any good if it’s down. It needs to be running all day, every day, 24/7, especially if it’s a high-volume e-commerce site or a key lead generator for your business. We want to make sure that you never have to worry, which is why every site we host is on its own VPS. And as your online business grows, acquiring more visitors and increased traffic, our hosting grows with it, so that your site—big or small—is always fast and reliable. We even include a year of free web hosting with every site we build, so that you can see the difference for yourself.
Sometimes, in an effort to keep costs down, web hosting services will host dozens—or even hundreds—of unrelated sites on a single shared server. This means that each website is competing with all the others for server resources, severely hindering load times. And if a virus or software malfunction takes down one site, all of them may ultimately be compromised, costing you precious up-time (and money!).
We constantly monitor our sites, while also proactively heading off problems with malware, viruses, and site crashes by maintaining site backups and keeping current with security patches and software updates. And at the smallest sign of a hacking attempt or other issue, we’re on it.
There’s no time for you to deal with all the ins and outs of keeping a website up and running: that’s OUR job.
Web hosting with Creative California features:
- A dedicated cloud-based VPS giving your site incredible speed and reliability
- Flexible solutions for handling web traffic large and small
- Real-time risk monitoring
- Website backup maintenance
- Handling of security patches and updates
- On-call support when necessary
The best part? It’s usually FREE.
While we are more than happy to help host your existing site for a fee, every website we build comes with a free year of our hosting. We’re not really in the business of hosting websites as much as we are in the business of developing sites that are user-friendly, reliable, and great for SEO. So, we choose to offer a better service in order to meet these goals – better serving your customers and generating more traffic and leads. So contact us today for a free quote and see how we can help develop and host your new website!