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What is Shared Web Hosting?

Published on 2/26/2011 by

You probably visit shared web hosting websites daily without even realizing it.  Many of today’s most popular blogs, news sites and eCommerce shops utilize the powerful services that shared web hosting has to offer.

Shared web hosting is a service whereby multiple websites share the resources and space of a web hosting server.  Each website is allocated an agreed upon amount of space and bandwidth and each site then sits on its own partition or section of the server, where it is served to the Internet.

The requirements of shared web hosting

All it takes to get started with shared web hosting is a great idea and a domain name.  After purchasing a shared web hosting plan, your domain name will be added to the server and you can begin to develop your website and get it online.

What’s included with shared web hosting accounts

Not all shared web hosting packages are the same, but most include all of the following:

  • Space:  You will be purchasing a set amount of space on a web hosting server that is reserved entirely for you.
  • Bandwidth:  Each month you’ll be allocated a set amount of bandwidth.  The more files you upload and the more traffic your websites receives, the more bandwidth you will use up.
  • Control panel:  This is a web based administration tool where you can add or remove services to and from your account, pay your hosting bill, manage email addresses, upload files, view statistical information, and more.
  • FTP access:  File Transfer Protocol (FTP) is a method of moving files from your computer to your shared web hosting account.
  • Email accounts:  Most shared web hosting companies allow you to create an unlimited number of email accounts.
  • Software:  In your control panel you’ll have access to software that will help you install forums, blogs, customer service desks, shopping carts, image galleries, polls, and much, much more.
  • Subdomains:  A subdomain is an extension of your domain name.  With shared web hosting you’ll be allowed to create additional subdomains, which means you can have your main website on MyWebsiteHere.com and a blog on Blog.MyWebsiteHere.com.
  • Site Builders:  Automated site builders help those with little or no working knowledge of coding language to create a website with a few simple clicks of their mouse.
  • Analytics:  Your web hosting control panel will enable you to see a listing of your daily, weekly and monthly visitors.

File manager:  A file manager is a graphical application inside your control panel that will help you move files to and from your home computer and your shared web hosting server.

How do you get started?

Anyone can purchase a shared web hosting account and start building a website immediately.  The first step is to find a good web hosting company with a great reputation, and you can do that by reading quality web hosting reviews.