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Understanding the differences between domain names, emails, hosting and websites

August 17, 2022
Matt Southam

If you’re starting a business, one of the first steps you need to take is setting up your website. This can be overwhelming if you’re not sure where to start. Understanding the differences between a domain name, website, email and website hosting will help make this process easier. Let’s dive in!

Domain Name


A domain name is a business asset often used as an address for your website and emails. It allows users to easily access your website by typing in its address instead of typing in an IP address (lots of numbers).
When coming up with your domain name, try to keep it short and memorable so customers can find you easily and remember your site.

Website


A website is the actual content that people view when they visit your domain name or web address on their browser. Your website should include relevant information about your business, such as the products you sell or the services you offer plus contact details, case studies and blog posts about helpful topics related to what you do or sell. Websites are generally made up of HTML pages which can include text, images and videos all connected together by hyperlinks.

Website Hosting

When building and launching a website, there are two main components: the design (or look) of the site and the hosting (or server space). Website hosting is where your website actually lives on the internet.

Website hosting refers to the space on a server where all of the data associated with your website is stored, including images, code files, databases etc.. In order for your visitors to be able to access these files they need to be hosted on a web server that allows them to be accessed over the internet 24/7 without interruption. Think of hosting as a computer connected to the internet at all times.

There are typically a few different types of hosting services available.
Shared hosting where resources are shared amongst many websites on one server. This is cheaper, but you run the risk that if one website is using all the resources, then yours will run slow too.

The other option is a VPS or dedicated server. These are usually more expensive but provide exclusive access to resources. This allows faster loading speeds than shared hosting plans due to limited competition for resources from other websites being hosted on the same server. Once you have chosen a good web host provider, it is also important that you back up all of your data regularly so nothing gets lost in case anything happens unexpectedly such as crashing servers or security threats etc.. Having regular backups also ensures that any changes made over time can easily be reversed, giving you more control over how changes affect user experience and performance when visiting your site.

Emails

Email and websites are two different things. Email is a system of sending messages electronically, typically through an email server.
It is possible to use the same server (hosting) as is used to store your website files but we recommend keeping them separate. You will most often use the same domain name for your website and for your emails. This helps build trust with your customers.
We recommend either using Microsoft 365 or Goggle workspace for your emails

Conclusion

Knowing about domain names, websites, emails and web hosting services will go a long way when setting up online for yourself or small business.

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