In today’s post we are going to clarify one of the most common questions that may be haunting you: what is the difference between web domain and a hosting?
If you are interested in setting up your Internet business or simply want to create your website and you are not a professional in IT, marketing or web development, or even if you’ve hired a professional you probably feel overwhelmed by all the terminology; in this post we will clarify one of the most common questions that may be haunting you: what is the difference between web domain and hosting?
If you make a simple query on Google you will most likely end up more confused because you will find that both terms go hand in hand, so you may think that they are the same or that hosting and web domain do the same function, especially after reading that some hosting providers offer you a free domain or that when you register a domain you get a hosting plan.
However, this perception is not entirely correct, so if you want to completely clear any doubts stay with us because here we will answer: what is a hosting and what is its function for our website? and what is a web domain and what is its function?
What is a web domain and what is it for?
We can define a web domain in a very simple way, as the name of a website, which has the characteristic of being unique and being formed by two parts, the name and the extension, which in turn, can be generic or territorial. In simple words the domain is the name that we write on the search bar to find a website.
This is simply how we can define the domain, but the main purpose of domains and the domain name system is to translate IP addresses, which identify a website in a simpler way, because nobody wants to type a series of numbers that do not represent anything to us every time we need to visit YouTube or Facebook.
All websites have a unique domain, which you can choose yourself to match the name of your brand or business. To get one you need to follow these steps:
- Think of a name that identifies you: Experts suggest that you choose a short, easy-to-remember name so that your visitors can access it quickly.
- Verify that no one else is using the name you want to use: With the number of websites that exist, it is very easy that the name you want to use is already being used by another site. The best thing to do is to check availability by searching the name in Google or in a domain search engine such as GoDaddy.
- Choose the most appropriate extension: Domain extensions are the letters after the name you have chosen, such as .com, .mx, .edu, or .gob. These letters serve to identify the nature and location of your site. You can use the most common extensions without restrictions, for example .com or .net. However, to use other extensions such as .gob or .edu, you have to meet specific requirements such as proving your identity or official registration as a government entity or school.
- Register your domain: The next step is to register your domain name with a domain registrar, who will charge you a small fee for doing so. If you need to register a domain with .mx you can find the best registrars on our website.
It is very important that you keep in mind that a web domain does more for you than just identify you on the Internet, it is also a very important part for SEO positioning, especially if you decide to use a local geolocation extension such as .mx. Using this extension will help you appear in Google’s local search results, guaranteeing that you will reach customers close to you.
If you want to learn more about web domains and especially about everything that a .mx domain can do for your website you can read our posts about it, because they have a lot of unmissable information that will get you out of all your doubts.
What is a hosting and what is it for?
Broadly speaking, a hosting is a storage service, which is basically the space where all the files that your website needs are stored, from text, HTML documents, codes, to images and videos. This service is provided by a web server, which are powerful computers with ample capacity connected to the Internet 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, so that your information is always available.
This hosting service can vary according to the needs of each website. According to the storage capacity of the server, hosting is divided into four types:
It is the most common hosting, but its service is enough for most of the websites. Its main feature is that the server’s Ram memory and disk space is shared with other users.
This type of hosting is the best for websites that require more storage capacity and need all the server’s resources. Unlike shared hosting, with VPS servers, the customer has his own “machine” within a system of connected but independent machines.
This type of hosting offers a service very similar to VPS servers, with high CPU performance and space in RAM and disk, but the big difference is that they are fully managed, so you can forget about managing the technical aspects of your server.
This is the most complete storage service, since it allocates a server to a single web client exclusively, who can manage it freely, according to his needs.
Choosing the hosting service for your web is also a more technical issue than choosing the domain, and maybe you do not have much idea about which hosting provider to hire, so we list some of the basic features that the hosting you hire should have, so you can make a more informed decision.
- Storage: hosting plans include different storage capacities, from a few gigabytes to a freer plan, the basic plans work well for almost all websites, but if you want to build an online store it is best to hire extra storage.
- Bandwidth: this is a feature that you should consider when choosing a provider and it has to do with the maximum amount of data per month that your website can use. Keep in mind that the higher the bandwidth, the higher the speed of your website.
- Security: there are some storage plans that include the installation of security certificates such as SSL security certificates, while in others they are purchased separately. A good hosting should at least guarantee an SSL certificate.
Choosing a hosting is a fundamental part for the design of our website and to offer a pleasant user experience, as it has to do with the loading speed and security of it, so it is best not to skimp and hire the one that best suits our needs. If you want to learn more about types of hosting and how they work, I invite you to review our posts on the subject.
In conclusion, a web domain is the name that will distinguish your website from the rest of the sites in the world, while hosting is a storage space for information, images, video or any other type of content accessible via web.
Making an analogy the domain is the address of your apartment while a hosting is the building where it is located. Now that you understand the difference between hosting and web domain, do you feel ready to start working on your website?