Web Hosting vs. Domain Registration

Web Hosting vs. Domain Registration

People who are new to creating websites typically have a lot of questions, especially when it comes to the difference between domain registration and web hosting. As an analogy, a domain is an “address” on the Internet. Hosting is the “land” or space where your website files live. While your domain tells users how to get to your website, your host tells your website what to display for those users once they arrive. Read on to learn more about the differences between your domain registrar and website host.

What is Domain Registration?

A domain on the internet is like the address of your home. It tells other internet networks how to access your website. Domains contain both the name of your site and the domain extension (commonly .com, .org, .net, but there are dozens of more).

While you can create a private network without registering a domain, the problem is that only those users who directly connect to that private network will be able to visit your site. That may be fine for a local server meant only for your office, but it is pretty much useless for doing business online.

To let others visit your website, you need to register it. Registering a website is easy. All you have to do is choose an available domain name and a domain extension and pay a small fee to a registrar. There are hundreds of domain registrars, and while they do the same job, they’re not all the same. Costs for domain registration vary, and some registrars offer additional services such as domain privacy and domain renewal protection. To keep your domain name, you must renew the domain registration before it expires.

What is Web Hosting?

While the domain registrar provides the domain name and extension, the web host supplies you with an IP address (those long strings of numbers that a domain name points to) and the hardware and software necessary to run the site. While dealing with a domain registrar is straightforward and almost always problem-free, choosing and working with a web host can be much more confusing and frustrating, so it is well worth spending time shopping around for web hosts.

Who Should Host My Website?

A dizzying number of companies offer an incredible array of hosting plans costing nothing to thousands of dollars a month. When starting out online, it is tempting to choose an inexpensive host. After all, you are just beginning your online journey. But this is not the best approach.

Think of your web host as your landlord. They provide the facilities necessary to do business, but they can also make operating pleasurably simple or extremely difficult. To a certain degree, your web host has control over your online business, including the connection speed, your site’s downtime, and, most importantly, the security for your business and your customers.

In today’s climate, you need a dependable web host that puts its customers first. At CleverLight Media, we offer comprehensive managed website hosting. That means top-of-the-line performance without all the headaches. Our hosting plan features ultrafast connections and the security you need for peace of mind. Check out everything you get with our managed hosting plan and speak with one of our hosting experts to learn how we can take your site to the next level.

About the author

Lindsey is a senior project manager and content strategist at CleverLight. She leads our clients through the web design, development, and content marketing processes with excellent communication and time management skills. Since joining the team in 2020, she has become an integral part of the day-to-day operations at CleverLight.

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