An online presence for small businesses is a great way to become competitive in the age of the Internet. Through web sites you can make your business contacts and promotions online and establish a strong presence in the World Wide Web. Through the best web hosting companies you can purchase the services you need to get the presence that you desire.
If you have a well established business already or are planning on having a rapidly growing business then it is extremely important to get the right hosting for your needs. Your business may need either VPS Hosting or a Dedicated Server from the right web host company to handle the traffic and customer interface that is required. The choice may be tough when you don’t have much of an idea as to the differences between a VPS and a Dedicated Server.
What is a Virtual Private Server (VPS)?
To put it plainly, a VPS is a type of hosting that allows its users more privacy and a custom hosting interface on a single server. Each web site and VPS account has its own private area of the server operating system and allows the user to have full control of its functionality and usage. On each physical server there are several websites, but each website has its own allocated disk space independent and separate from the other. It also has its own control panel that can be rebooted anytime without affecting the other sites on the server. However, the performance of each site will depend on the overall traffic demands on the entire server.
What is a Dedicated Server?
In the web hosting business, a dedicated server is a physical server leased by clients for their exclusive use. The user has complete control of the machine and has the liberty to add or remove software applications in the software and the ability to choose the operating system, control panel and any other customized applications, add-ons and plug-ins available. The dedicated server user does not share any space with any other websites and therefore can handle much higher traffic loads.
By definition we are now aware of the difference between the two, but how can this difference affect our web site as well as our connection to the Internet? In a virtual private server environment, wherein there are several web sites, the speed of connection can be influenced by the flow of the traffic to the entire server, of which the server will automatically allocate bandwidth to each, thereby slowing down the speed. Other than this, there are no other significant differences that will affect the performance of each web site.
Here are some popular features that are common with both hosting services:
- Blogging Tools
- Content Management Systems
- eCommerce Packages
- Control Panel Based Administration
- 1-Click Installers
- Development Tools and Frameworks
- Automated Backups
- SSL Certificates
These popular features are essentially important to run and maintain a good and decent website for the establishment of a strong online presence. As a small businessman the most important thing is to start building a small website. Once the website goes online, the next concern is to keep it growing. Additional investments might be needed whenever the website grows but that investment could be partly or wholly financed from the revenues generated from having an online presence.
Cost is usually the biggest factor in choosing either to go for virtual private server or for a dedicated server. A high quality VPS may cost as little as $15 per month while a dedicated server could cost more than ten times of that amount. Investing too much money at the start might not be a good financial decision depending up the budget allotted. The period in which to recoup that investment should be considered carefully otherwise it will go to waste or become a lost opportunity. For a small business, it is better to start with VPS hosting services and upscale or upgrade later. At any rate, a virtual private server has all the necessary and essential features to create and establish a secure online presence. Going for a virtual private server is the natural way to go as most high end features of a dedicated server are not necessary in building a good and decent website or collection of websites to start with.
There are web hosting companies that put restrictions on virtual private server accounts like the number of domains allowed in one account but these are the exception rather than the rule. That limitation has nothing to do with the technical difference between the two. It’s a matter of individual company policies or product packaging strategies.
Essentially, for a big corporation with established presence in the World Wide Web, a dedicated server is something of a necessity. But for small and medium size businesses a virtual private server is good enough and cost effective to have the speed and security needed in order to have an established online presence.