What are You Actually Paying For With Hosting?
I’ve been in the web hosting game for going on four years now. I use Bluehost to host a variety of websites I run, including author blogs for various independent publishers who have asked me to maintain their websites, my own personal blog, as well as a couple of niche sites that I developed for fun and profit.
There is one funny question I hear from people who are unhappy about dropping $4.95 per month for their web hosting. “What am I even paying for?” they ask. Shouldn’t the internet just be free!? It’s a free country!
Well…yes, the internet should certainly be free. But that doesn’t necesarily mean that you running a website should be free. It actually costs a TON of money to keep up a storage environment. So I wanted to take a post and talk a little bit about what you are actually PAYING for when you sign up to have a .com with a hosting company (I recommend and use Bluehost). After I delve into all of the components that Bluehost actually has to house in order to make your words appear on the internet…you’ll find that $4.95 is quite a bargain for all you’re getting!
What you would need to build your own storage
If you were to build your own hosting environment, you would need to buy a server. How much does one of these bad boys cost?
At LEAST $1,000. And we are talking one helluva super tiny server, one that will barely let you find anything on there.
Next you are gonna have to find an APC backup. One of these guys, while not as expensive as a server, is still going to cost you in the $30-40 range. Oh yea, you better make sure you have a generator in case you run of electricity.
Things starting to add up yet? Well I’m just getting started.
We’re going to need software to run on that server, which is pretty costly since we’ll have to license it from Microsoft. Now we have to make sure that server is backed up, preferably twice. Don’t forget virus protection! You don’t want someone hacking into your information do you? You’ll probably want a monitor display so you can view the software on your server, too.
Servers get hot. When those discs are spinning super fast, they tend to heat way way up, so you’ll need a top of the line cooling system to keep your server up. If your server heats up for even an hour, you’re going to risk hard drive failure.
These technical components don’t even take into account the shelving, the rent, and the specialized employees that you have to hire to keep all of these components up and running. All of this, and keep in mind if you are down for even 2 minutes, you are going to hear it from a bunch of your customers (Bluehost comes with a 99.9% uptime guarantee).
When you add in all of the other intangibles (discussed in my Bluehost vs Hostgator and Bluehost vs iPage posts) such as speed, customer service, free google adwords credits, among other things, that $4.95 price point is starting to sound damn good!
Like I’ve mentioned, Bluehost is the company that works for me. I’ve worked on mostly small time websites that won’t recieve upwards of 10,000 hits per day any time soon. Once they do, I might look at a more complex hosting solution like Rackspace. BUT there is a reason Bluehost is home to more than 1.9 million websites.
Like this post? Sharing is caring! And for more detailed advice on how to sign up for web hosting, check out my post how to start a blog.
Thanks and have a great day!