Storage/Disk Storage - the amount of storage capacity provided for your web pages, images, photos, music or video files for your web site. Most web sites will never use more than 300mb, however, if you are creating a site to display or sell art work, music, graphics or plan to sell many different products then more storage is better.
Data Transfer/Bandwidth - the amount of data sent through a connection. If you have a large web site, with many visitors, you will need more bandwidth than someone with a small site and only a few visitors. Most web sites will never use more than 15GB per month. However, if you plan to grow and expand your site it's good to have bandwidth to spare. If you plan to promote downloads from your site such as music or any large files, you will need all the bandwidth you can get.
Control Panel - software provided by the host to make managing your web site simpler and easier.
Streaming Audio - The process of providing audio content on a web site. If you want audio on your website be sure your host provides "Streaming Audio".
Auto Responders - automated program that acknowledges receipt of an e-mail message, and sends back a previously prepared email to the sender.
CGI - Common Gateway Interface - CGI Scripts have many uses such as site searches, guestbooks, web polls and on and on. There are hundreds of free CGI Scripts (as well as professional scripts) available on the web. Having a CGI-BIN included with your hosting package allows you to take advantage of these resources.
FrontPage Extension - required if you plan to use Microsoft FrontPage to create and edit your website.
MySQL - an advanced database that allows you to store variables such as customer data. Most advanced ecommerce use this database because of its reliability and speed.
POP3 Email Accounts - common email accounts. POP3 boxes allow you to download, read and manage your email using an email client such as Outlook or Netscape.
RealAudio/RealVideo - streaming video and audio delivery system for the Internet.
Shopping Cart - keep track of what customers have ordered from your e-commerce store. I'm sure you already know what a shopping cart is so this is just a reminder, if you plan to sell products online, you will need a shopping cart.
Secure Server SSL - a server that encrypts information sent to the website so hackers can not intercept the input data from the website. SSL is a standard for transmitting confidential data such as credit card numbers over the Internet. If you plan to gather personal information or sell products online, you will need SSL.
Password Protection - allows you to create a members only site or to have a members only section of your website. A visitor will have to enter a password you provide before they can access the protected area.
Technical Support - you never know when you might have a question. 24/7 Tech Support is a must. All of the hosting plans on our site have 24/7 support.
TOS Terms Of Service - The contract between you and your hosting company. Take the time to read the TOS of the hosting plan you choose. Some hosts will not allow music download sites. For example, none of the hosting plans displayed on our pages will allow "sexually explicit" sites to be hosted on their servers.
Don't be intimidated by terms such as PHP, Perl, SSI, ASP and others if you are a beginner and don't know what they mean. Mostly, these are scripting languages supported by the host server. You can create a great looking web site without using any of them, however, if months from now you locate that PERFECT Perl script that will enhance your website, you will be glad your hosting company provides CGI-BIN access and Perl support. If over time your web site grows in size to hundreds of pages, PHP and/or SSI may become helpful in simplifying the updating and maintenance of your site.
Why Choose a Professional Hosting Plan Like The Ones Listed Below? - If you plan only to display photos of your dogs so your family on the other side of the country can enjoy them, almost any hosting plan will do including free plans.
However, if you intend to create a quality site where people all over the world will visit and interact, an ecommerce site or a site that represents your organization or business, you need a professional web hosting service. A host that provides what you need now, and just as importantly, a host that includes everything necessary for your site to grow. Plenty of storage space, data transfer, support for multiple scripting languages and all of the services a meaningful web site requires.
The excellent service and support provided with the plans below combined with their affordable prices place a professional web site within reach of a beginner just like an IT guru. 2011 is a good time to stake your territory on the Internet.