What is a host or hosting?
Wow, you guys and gals have a host of great questions…. see what we did there? Although the meaning is different, it is similar in a way, to the different definitions of the word host.
A Web Host is the company you pay to hold onto your website files and show people how to get to your site. It manages the server (computer) that hold all of your important information and makes sure you can find what you are looking for and so others can as well. Much like the host at an event, they are there to make sure everyone knows where to go and keeps everything running smoothly. A host will sometimes allow you to register your domain name as well. This makes setting up your services a lot easier. Some hosts put everything website related in one location through a single service.
Not all hosts are created equal. Some are definitely cheaper, but cheaper is not always the best way to go. Much like most things in life, sometimes the cheaper something is, the less reliable it can be. For web developers, we all have our preferences. Mainly for performance or service related reasons. We spend more time dealing with the host than you, the client, probably ever will so we tend to get comfortable with specific hosting companies. For us at Chemical Coding, we prefer to use Dreamhost.com or wpengine. They are both very good and reliable services and are geared specifically to WordPress websites. Although we find Dreamhost.com to be more to our liking. Wpengine does not allow for registering your domain with them, thus making it just one extra step in the setup process. This is a minor issue and the services outweigh the inconvenience.