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How Much Should Your Business Budget for Website Hosting Costs?

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Web hosting can range from free to several hundred dollars a month. It’s natural to want to spend as little as possible but choosing the wrong type of hosting can lead to your website going down and potentially a significant hit to your bottom line.

When budgeting for your business’ website hosting cost, think about what you need now and what you’re likely to need in the future. Let’s look at the different types of web hosting and how to choose the right one for your needs.

Types of Web Hosting

There are several types of web hosting you can choose from:

  • Free
  • Shared hosting
  • Virtual Private Server (VPS)
  • Cloud hosting
  • Dedicated server

You shouldn’t even consider using free hosting for your business. If anything goes wrong or the host changes something, you could lose your website for good.

Shared hosting is the cheapest option, ranging from $5 to $50 a month on average, but also isn’t the best solution. Shared hosts put many websites on a single server, sometimes splitting the resources between hundreds of sites.

A VPS is a good option if your website is mostly text and doesn’t get a lot of visitors. This is another method of sharing a single server between several websites but you’ll have a fixed amount of resources like RAM, processors, and storage. You’ll typically pay anywhere from $20 to $150 per month for a VPS.

Microsoft Azure and Amazon S3 are examples of cloud hosting services. Your site gets hosted on their servers and the resources are adjustable to suit your needs. The prices for cloud hosting start at about $5 per month and go up from there, depending on how many resources you need.

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A dedicated server is exactly what it sounds like – the server is dedicated to your use only. You have complete control over how it’s set up and access to all its resources. This type of hosting runs from about $100 per month and up.

How to Choose the Right Option

If your website is text-based and doesn’t get a large number of visitors, a VPS plan is the best choice. It gives you complete control over the server at a reasonable cost.

If you host multimedia content like images, audio, and video, a dedicated server is a better choice. This is also the case if you expect your website to be popular. Even if you only get occasional spikes in traffic, a dedicated server is the best choice to handle those high traffic periods.

And if you are streaming video from your website, you should go with unmetered hosting. A typical dedicated server has a certain amount of bandwidth included every month. If you go over that data limit, you’ll get charged overage fees which can add up quickly.

An unmetered server includes unlimited data transfer, which is the only effective option for streaming video.

Look Beyond the Monetary Website Hosting Cost

When you’re budgeting for your business’ website hosting cost, look beyond the monthly fee you’re paying. If your website gets popular or gets linked to from another popular site and it crashes because your hosting is underpowered, you could miss out on far more in lost revenue than what you’ll spend for solid hosting.

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