If you’re launching your first website, it’s totally normal to have many unanswered questions on your mind. To make the whole process as smooth as possible, we provide you with basic but very useful information concerning two frequently used terms: “web hosting” and “domain”. In this article, Hamster takes a look at these terms and clarifies their differences. Also, we discuss the question of whether customers should use the same provider for both domain name registration and web hosting service or not.
What Is a Domain?
If we compare web hosting to home, the domain name is like its address. Basically, the domain name is your website’s address, such as www.hostens.com for Hostens. So, to get a domain (of course, a good and suitable one) is the first and most critical step for your e-business. Of course, every domain name must be unique.
Domain Name Servers (DNS) maintain a directory of domain names. A DNS enables your computer, mobile phone or another device connect with a particular website or email address via the domain name. The DNS uses a unique group of numbers which is called an IP (Internet Protocol) address. The domain name identifies one or more IP addresses and redirects your device to where it can find the site on connected servers, intended to send and receive information. So basically your domain name just represents a site’s real name-address – the IP address. And the DNS is used as a translator to translate IP addresses into unique but easy-to-remember addresses called domain names.
What Is Web Hosting?
Basically, a server is a physical device connected to the Internet with the purpose to store your files. It means that web hosting is like a storage space. Usually, web hosting service is used to host your website’s data, so it can definitely be called a home for your site.
There are a few different types of web hosting – shared hosting, reseller hosting, dedicated hosting and VPS hosting.
Shared hosting is the most popular and economical way to host your website. With shared hosting, the same resources are divided between several web hosting customers. It means that all of the sites are stored in the same server. Of course, it allows customers to get more affordable services and leave all the technical issues to the server’s owner – the web hosting company. Furthermore, the process of setting up shared hosting is quick and easy. It offers one-click website management systems such as WordPress. It also has its control panel, so even a user without any technical background can easily use the web hosting service.
Is it Good or Bad to Use the Same Company for Both?
Many companies in this industry offer web hosting as well as domain names registration to their customers. It makes such a web hosting provider a one-stop-shop for main services and allows customers to save their time. After registering the domain name, the customer can order web hosting services directly too. It is quite useful when launching your very first website. Furthermore, web hosting providers usually offer really attractive deals for buying the whole package that typically includes a domain name, web hosting, SSL certificates, and other services. The support’s availability also has to be taken into account. For example, if you have issues related to your domain name and web hosting, it’s always easier and more convenient to solve them while being assisted by the same company and its support team.
Of course, there are no obligations to order these two services from the same provider. You can always choose a different web hosting provider while registering your domain with another one. Also, you can always migrate from one provider to another without losing your domain name or your site files.
To sum up, it really depends on you. Some people choose to register their domain name at the same company that provides their web hosting service. Others decide to choose different service providers and not to stick to the same one.