What Is Bandwidth?
The word bandwidth is mainly used when you discuss something about any web hosting company, or when there is lots of web traffic but the website goes offline as it has no ‘bandwidth’ left to accommodate all the increased web traffic. So, what is this bandwidth? How does it work? And how much bandwidth do you really require?
The term bandwidth basically means the amount of data that is transferred over the internet over a particular period of time. It is the amount of information that is either downloaded from or uploaded to the web hosting server by any user. The bandwidth is usually measured in Megabytes per second (MBPS) or Gigabytes per second (GBPS). It ranges from 64 KBPS and may go up to 2 GBPS and more. When any user accesses any particular website, the browser automatically starts downloading the web pages on your monitor screen.
The bandwidth is the most important feature that can really have either a positive or a negative effect on your website and your online business. Make sure that you choose the right kind of web hosting plan depending upon the requirements of your website that has, apart from other requirements, sufficient amounts of bandwidth.
If the website contains some pretty heavy content like large graphics, audio files, videos, animations, large downloads, and other such heavy content, then the bandwidth required for downloading or even displaying the web pages would be high.
On the other hand, if the website has quite low downloadable content or even less on-page content, then the bandwidth that is required would be very less. The web hosting server has a tracker that tracks the amount of data transfer that has taken place over the month. If this exceeds the allotted amount of bandwidth, that is, if he exceeds the bandwidth limit that is allotted to him, then he may have to pay a lot of additional fees. For this reason, at least, you need to be very sure that you have sufficient bandwidth so that you do not easily cross the limit of bandwidth that is allotted to you.
Also, if you are targeting a huge amount of web traffic or are planning to have some great event that will attract lots of visitors to your website, then the bandwidth that you would require will be very high. This is because there might be many people who are viewing the same web page or there might be a lot of people who are downloading lots of content from your website. At such instances, if you do not have sufficient bandwidth, then it may slow down your entire website, or sometimes the website may even crash due to the heavy load no matter how fast internet connection your web page viewer has. Due to these factors, you will not only lose the web traffic that you had worked hard and earned, but also lose the online business if the website crashes due to the lack of bandwidth for the month.
When a user visits your website and accesses any web page, it adds up in the usage of bandwidth. So, if your website is getting about 100 web visitors a day, and every visitor checks approximately 4 pages which averages about 100kb in size, then every day you are using almost 50 Mb of bandwidth which equates to almost 1.5 GB of bandwidth per month. Also, when you upload or download any web page or any content that is present on your website, or even edit your web pages, it again adds up to the overall usage of the bandwidth.
Further, when the web spiders of the search engines crawls your website, it again increases the usage of bandwidth. The number of graphics, audios, and other multimedia files present on your web pages and the graphical advertisements too add up quickly ad diminishes your allotted bandwidth.
So, while choosing any particular kind of web hosting company, make sure that you are provided with enough bandwidth. Also, make sure that the web hosting company that you are choosing is flexible and reliable. In future if you need some additional features like the increase in the bandwidth or the disk space, or the memory requirements, your web host should be in a position to provide it immediately and if possible at affordable rates for these extras.
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