Website hosting is the service of providing a "home" for your website on a computer (and network connection) which is capable of making your site available to all those who want to use it.
If you choose to use a church website (or some other) company which provides you with a ready-to-use Content Management System, they will also provide the hosting, so you don't have to worry about this.
If you have a bespoke / one-off site designed, the company you are working with will almost certainly offer you a hosting service as well.
They will also help with domain names and email addresses.
If you are doing it yourself, you need to choose a hosting service. Some web hosting services appear to be free. You may get website space bundled in with your broadband access, or you may come across some other free service. Watch out for the following:-
- Make sure you can have the website address of your choice
- Make sure that if you change hosting companies, you can take your website address with you.
- Make sure that you own and control the entire screen, without interference. You don't want the "free" service adding its own advertising to your site.
- Whilst no-one can give a cast-iron guarantee that your website will always be responsive and available, make sure as far as you can that your hosting service is fast and reliable, and that if there are problems, it is able to deal with them promptly.
Last updated: July 2008