Hosting · Web

Understanding True Costs of Web Hosting

web hostingOne of the main pitfalls that almost all new web masters and web designers fall into when choosing a hosting service, is estimating the real cost of web hosting. This article outlines these pitfalls, so you can make an informed decision with regards to web hosting costs, when choosing your web hosting provider. If you are instead interested on getting exact cost estimates, then read Cost of Setting up a New Blog or Website.

Web Hosting Discounts for New Customers

Most beginners will be awed by the huge discounts offered by top web hosting companies like Hostgator offer as much as 75% off on web hosting during the Black Friday sales. As a beginner, it is important to know that almost all web hosting companies offer zero discounts during renewalsTwitter . Also, after being with a hosting company for a few months and having set up your site and email accounts on the hosting service, changing hosting companies can be a painful affair. If you’ve paid a developer to set up your site, then moving hosts can be expensive too.

Hence while evaluating the costs of hosting your website with a given provider, it is critical to understand the non-discounted prices as those are the prices you will be paying after your first term runs out.

To illustrate, consider this:

Company 1: Offers hosting at $10 a month. Offers a 25% discount for new users for 1 year.

Company 2: Offers hosting at $12 a month. Offers a 50% discount for new users for 1 year.

Company 1Company 2
Hosting Rate$10 / month$12 / month
Year 1 Discount25%50%
Year 1 Costs$10 x 12 x 0.75 = $96$12 x 12 x 0.5 = $72
Years 2-5 Costs$10 x 12 x 4 = $480$12 x 12 x 4 = $576
Total cost of hosting for 5 years$96 + $480 = $576$72 + $576 = $648
Cost of Hosting Per Year$115.20$129.50


For the first year, company 2 is almost 25% cheaper as compared to company 1 and may look like a cheaper alternative. However, when you see hosting costs over a 5 year period, then company 2 is actually more expensive than company 1 by 10%

Knowing this calculation as a beginner can help manage your hosting costs. Hence, please check full as well as discounted rates while choosing your web hosting provider.

Bundled Services Around Web Hosting

Some providers include services like email and backups in their pricing, while other providers charge separately for each service. You need to evaluate which of these ancillary services are essential to your business and calculate the cost of the entire bundle when comparing pricing across web hosts. Some of the add-on services include:

  • Email Accounts
  • Email Storage Space
  • Disk Storage Space for Hosting
  • Data Transfer Bandwidth for Hosting
  • Automated Backups
  • Domain Privacy (usually a part of Domain hosting)
  • One-Click Installers
  • Control Panels (like cPanel)

Hence, before rushing to buy a hosting package, you must list down all the services that you think you will be needing and then evaluate the total cost of the bundle.Twitter

Let us know your thoughts and questions using the comments section below.

Recommended: Read our Web Hosting Guide which contains some great tips for choosing web hosts and our Recommendation of Best Web Hosts for Beginners. You should also go through our list of Best Shared Web Hosting companies.

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