A website needs somewhere to live on the internet, and unless a business has its own dedicated server for website hosting, it will need to decide exactly where it will lie.
Indeed there’s no shortage of options available, with a deluge of website hosting companies advertising to companies with varying packages of server support. At Woya, we host all of our clients’ websites on a dedicated server – but this is just one choice available to those looking to secure their digital presence.
Find out more about the ins and outs of business website hosting and to help make an educated decision on what may be the right decision for your organisation.
What is Website Hosting?
Hosting is a space to house a website being rented or bought online.
All of the content that makes up a website – the HTML and CSS coding, images, videos, downloadables and all other components – must be housed on a server in order to be viewable online. When a user visits this content, it is downloaded from this server to be displayed.
What is a Server?
A server is a computer that acts as the connection between a website and those who use it, presenting the data to them.
It is a high-powered piece of machinery specifically built to store, process and manage network data, devices and systems, so it holds a lot of information and processes lots of pieces of data simultaneously. A server holds the website and its content and when accessed, displays it for the web user.
What is a Website Hosting Service Provider?
Website hosting service providers are companies who own servers, connectivity services and other associated services to host websites for other organisations.
Through the offering of a variety of hosting plans, they are able to sell and/or rent space on their servers to cover a spectrum of hosting needs that businesses may require; from small one-person blogs to large corporation’s websites. Website hosting service providers usually differentiate their services from one another on the pricing of packages and the reliability of their service.
The latter should be considered priority as if the servers of a website hosting service providers fail or malfunction, the website of the organisations hosted on it will be unavailable for visitors.
What Do Website Hosting Companies Offer?
Of course, every website hosting company is different and all will have varying service packages. However, generally speaking, most offer a space on their shared server for a website to be hosted, usually amongst hundreds if not thousands, of other sites.
Many also offer some degree of tech support, a choice of URLs and sometimes personalised email addresses.
Website Hosting on a Shared Server Differ vs a Dedicated Server
Not all website hosting companies operate by hosting more than one website on their servers – some dedicate specific servers to one website or organisation at a time.
The operation of shared servers presents different service levels to those of dedicated servers, and it’s important that businesses understand what is available to them in order to make an informed decision before they purchase a website hosting service.
Website hosting on a shared server is usually cheaper, but this cost factor often presents a compromise with site speed. As the nature of shared servers mean that more traffic passes through them (as more than one website will be accessed through it), site speed can be impacted. This is particularly a risk if one website on the server is spammed or subject to malicious traffic, as it can take a while for the website hosting company to identify where the issue is occurring and correct it. On a dedicated server, site speed will not be impacted by others’ traffic and service will be faster as a result.
Businesses looking to build up their SEO rankings need to consider that the risk of shared server unreliability needs to be weighed up with their SEO presence, as websites that are often down or slow may be ranked down in the Google algorithm as they are considered to not deliver a great user experience (UX) considering Google Core Vitals.
Shared servers don’t require the website owner to have any degree of technical skill, as no knowledge of servers, security or other hosting services is needed – everything is managed by the website hosting service provider with no individual intervention required, so you can self manage via their portal.
A business managing their website hosting through a dedicated server may need to understand a little more technically and often use companies offering dedicated hosting that can still manage the technical aspects. Then the organisation doesn’t necessarily need a tech or web expert in-house.
Dedicated servers do give a higher degree of control for those using them as opposed to shared servers as they are not limited by the customisation options offered by set packages. This allows for bespoke configuration setup in order to best tailor the website hosting to business requirements.
All considered, this makes shared servers a cost-effective option for personal websites but often not the preference for professional companies and businesses. Particularly large businesses with lots of content on their websites should consider hosting on a dedicated server as they will want to control the traffic levels and not be at risk from other shared hosting websites, in fact they should even consider mirrored servers to secure their online presence.
Woya Digital Dedicated Server Website Hosting
We host all of our customer websites on dedicated servers. These are premium quality servers which our team hold complete control over; offering the best in security, site speed and service – without our customers having to know the ins and outs of server technology.
Get in touch with our team to find out more about what we have to offer your business!