What’s the difference between hosting and domain
What Is a Domain Name?
A domain name is the address of your website that people type in the browser’s URL bar to visit your website.
In other words, if your website were a house, then your domain name would be its address.
Now, let’s get into the detailed explanation.
The internet is basically a giant network of computers connected to each other through cables. To easily identify them, each computer is assigned a series of numbers called IP Addresses.
This IP address is a combination of numbers separated by dots. Typically, IP addresses look like this:
Computers have no problem identifying and remembering these numbers. However, humans can’t remember and use these numbers to connect to websites on the internet.
To solve this problem, domain names were invented.
A domain name can have words, which makes it easy to remember website addresses.
Now, if you want to visit a website on the internet, you don’t need to type in a string of numbers. Instead, you can type in an easy-to-remember domain name like wpbeginner.com.
To learn more about domain names, take a look at our beginner’s guide on domain names and how they work.
You can also check out our guide on how to choose the best domain name. It includes tips on picking the right domain extension, creating a brandable domain name for your small business, and more.
What Is Web Hosting?
Web hosting is the place where all the files of your website are. It is like the home of your website where it actually lives.
A good way to think about this is if the domain name were the address of your house, then web hosting would be the actual house that the address points to.
All websites on the internet need web hosting.
When someone enters your domain name in a browser, the domain name is translated into the IP address of your web hosting company’s computer.
This computer, also known as a hosting server, contains your website’s files, and it sends those files back to the users’ web browsers.
Web hosting companies specialize in storing and serving websites. They offer different types of hosting plans to their customers, including shared hosting, VPS hosting, managed WordPress hosting, cloud hosting, eCommerce hosting, and more.
You can see our article on WordPress hosting to learn more about choosing the right hosting for your website.
How Are Domain Names and Web Hosting Related?
Domain names and web hosting are two different services. However, they work together to make websites possible.
Basically, a domain name system is like a massive address book that is constantly updated. Behind each domain name, there is an address of the web hosting service storing the website’s files.
Without domain names, it will not be possible for people to find your website, and without web hosting, you cannot build a website.
This is why many top domain name registrars also offer web hosting services.
How Are Domain Names and Web Hosting Different?
The main difference between domain names and web hosting is that domain names point users to the location of your website, while web hosting is where your website lives.
Think of it like this. Web hosting is the house where you store your website files, and the domain name is the address of that house.
They are two different but related services. This brings us to the next question: What do you need to build your website, a domain name or web hosting?
What Do I Need to Build a Website? Domain Name or Web Hosting?
To build a website, you will need both a domain name and a web hosting account.
Buying a domain name alone only gives you the right to use that particular domain name for a specific period (usually one year).
You need web hosting to store your website’s files. After you get hosting, you need to update your domain name settings and point it to your web hosting service provider.
We hope this article helped you learn the difference between a domain name and web hosting.