Using an internet service provider (ISP) for web hosting is an external hosting solution where the ISP is responsible for providing your business with connection to the internet.
ISPs can provide different types of web hosting services, including:
- shared server hosting
- dedicated hosting
- co-location hosting
Shared server hosting
With this type of hosting, the ISP owns the server, which is located in its offices. The ISP uses this server to host several other websites as well as yours. Shared server hosting is cost-effective, but may not be an option if you want to use complex technologies such as databases, secure certificates and tools that enable you to customise webpages for different users.
With dedicated hosting, your website is the only one hosted on a particular server. This option suits large websites with high user traffic, or those requiring special software or particularly high levels of security. While this approach offers the most powerful and secure solution, it is more expensive.
With co-location, you place your own server that you own or rent at the premises of the ISP to take advantage of their better technical infrastructure. With this option, you are generally responsible for maintaining the actual data and the website components.
Advantages of using an ISP for hosting
- You do not need to invest in your own web server.
- Most ISPs have very fast connections to the internet.
- The ISP's server should offer a very high degree of availability (up time) and reliability.
- The ISP should have a secure operating environment, high quality virus protection and the latest software patches to ensure the security of your site.
Disadvantages of using an ISP for hosting
- You need to trust your ISP to maintain the availability and security of your website.
- If the ISP is hosting too many other sites on a shared server, this may compromise your website's performance.
- If the ISP gets blacklisted (eg because of hosting adult content sites or spam sites), this can directly affect you. For example, you may find that your IP address is on various spam blacklists - this can cause your emails be filtered out and junked or you may not be able to register with certain services, websites, forums, etc.
Find out how to choose an internet service provider for your business.