By: Gregg Hall
The type of web site you have or intend to build will decide very much what web hosting company you end up choosing. The reason for this is that the level of storage, bandwidth, and other services differs greatly amongst all the various web hosting companies available.
If you are going to have a simple web site with only a few pages and very little graphics then you will be able to get by with a web host that offers entry level hosting packages. Bear in mind that even though there may be free services out there for a few dollars a month you are better off with your own hosting without their required advertising on your site.
Now on the other side of the coin, if you are going to have a web site that is more of an e-commerce or business web site or have one that hosts streaming music or video then you will want one that will allow much more features and scripts. The company will need to provide database support and offer applications such as ASP,PHP, and Java. It is also good for a web hosting company to have preinstalled scripts like those for forums or content management systems like Joomla or WordPress. I personally like the web hosts who offer Cpanel with Fantastico just for the ease of use.
If you intend to collect payments on your website then you are going to want to be sure to have SSL with at least 128 bit encryption for secure online purchases. You may also want to go with a supported gateway for your online shopping cart so that credit cards can be processed in real time using the larger processing entities such as Verisign or Paypal.
If you have a website or blog that requires a database then you will absolutely need a web host that offers this with scripting such as SQL so that the web pages can be read to gain access to the particular database and display the content.
The amount of space you will need plays a huge part on determining the web host you ultimately choose and this is why web design is such a huge factor. As a general rule of thumb, the average web page will need less than 1MB so if you have a 100 page site then 100 MB of space will be more than sufficient. However, the more pictures, video, or audio you add into the equation the more disk space you will need.
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