Advantages of Cloud Web Hosting for Small to Medium Businesses
Just a decade ago the internet was still in its youth and businesses were finding the benefit of building a website as part of a regular marketing mix. But finding the power to join the internet was left to big corporations who could afford the expensive web servers and house them internally. Some companies found they could simply do business by hosting web servers and hiring them out to businesses who wanted an internet presence without the high cost of buying and maintaining the servers.
But all this was still limited to using a single dedicated server(s) for bigger businesses, or sharing a single server with other web owners. Then along came the concept of cloud hosting. Cloud hosting is simply the connection of multiple servers to work together as a network, greatly reducing downtime due to a single server crash.
Benefits of Cloud Hosting
Web servers can be a pesky bunch of technology. Though they are the most powerful computers built by giants like Dell and Microsoft, they still find that if conditions are not just right, it’s prone to crash. A downed server on a regular single-server web hosting plan means your website is not available to customers, or is slow in delivering data transfer to customers.
This happens a great deal when a spike in internet traffic is felt to a specific website. Say you released a new product shown in a video on your website. The product generates great interest with your current customers and they share the information with their contacts, who share your web link with their contacts, etc. This is what is known as “viral” marketing. When your website gets more attention the server can get overloaded trying to share the data with so many new users. And an overload often cause it to simply shut down.
However, if a server goes down in a cloud hosting network the other servers simply take up the slack and keep your website up and running with the additional traffic.
What if your online business grows? If you need to utilize your website more by expanding its features and have a greater bandwidth need for additional internet traffic, can your single server provide the service you need?
Cloud hosting is easily expandable. When your internet needs grow, cloud hosting grows with you to make your website transition seamlessly.
Hosting your own web servers can be expensive. The computers themselves come at a great cost, but you also need to house them in a climate-controlled data center. In addition, don’t forget you need to hire administrators around the clock to ensure that they run all the time. Even when your website is not in much use, you’re still paying for all the server maintenance.
Cloud hosting allows you to transfer the cost of administration to others and leave you with just the thrill of growing your web business without the hassle of an expensive data center. You can simply pay for the use of additional virtual “space” on a cloud network and enjoy the benefit of your website.
There are disadvantages to cloud hosting such as security issues and lack of control where your data is stored, however, the security issues are very minimal and do not affect most small to medium sized businesses. If you have a growing web business consider cloud hosting as your service provider to provide the flexibility you need.
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I’ve just switched from a shared server hosting package to shared cloud hosting after my website went down, for a few hours. The extra cost isn’t huge, but does seem to offer some real advantages in reliability. Fingers crossed :0)
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