Okay, you’re ready to sign up with a hosting provider. You’ve built a great website that you hope will draw lots of followers or e-commerce customers. You want to make sure you have enough disk space and bandwidth. But how much is enough and how much is too much? You don’t want to pay for more than you need. These are the questions repeatedly asked by website owners. And the answers may surprise you.
Breaking Down Bandwidth
Many website owners wrestle with the idea that 50GB or even 100GB of bandwidth may not be enough for their website. But you may need far less than that because bandwidth is strictly about the number of visitors you expect to have on your site. In truth, most websites only use about 5GB of bandwidth each month. Unless you expect a meteoric rise in traffic, your website will be able to handle things with 5GB to 10GB of monthly bandwidth. You may need more if yours is an image-driven or video streaming website.
The Myth of Unlimited Bandwidth
Some hosting providers will try to lure you in with “Unlimited Bandwidth” offers. They’re not going to give you unlimited bandwidth for it would cost them too much to be price competitive in the marketplace. When they say unlimited, they’re talking about a typical client whose needs will never reach the “unlimited” threshold. The other thing to remember is that more bandwidth may not necessarily mean better performance.
You Don’t Need “Unlimited” Disk Space
This is another sales tactic that hosting providers like to tout—Unlimited Disk Space. Naturally, this will depend on the size and complexity of your website. Your typical website uses about 150MB, with your average web page eating up no more than 2MB. Anything more than 2MB will usually result in extended load times and frustrated site visitors. If yours is a successful blogging site or medium-sized e-commerce business, you won’t need “unlimited” disk space. About 5GB should meet your needs. On the other hand, if your website will feature banner ads, fast-moving graphics, or videos, you may need a bit more—say 50GB should suffice.
How Much Disk Space for WordPress Hosting?
As for WordPress hosting plans, many users struggle with estimating just how much disk space they’ll need. In truth, WordPress users often overestimate what they actually need, which can cause them to buy far more than what’s required for their site. The typical WordPress client will have 1GB of data for a single WordPress installation. Some will have a bigger database, with smaller file usage requirements; others may have more file usage needs requiring less database room. WordPress has a starter plan, for example, that offers 4GB (80%) of unused disk space for growth. WordPress plans start at 5GB and a single site, but go all the way up to an Enterprise 2 plan that provides 120GB of space for 80 WordPress sites. So you have lots of flexibility.
The bottom line is the more you go crazy with eye-catching media and big downloads, the more disk space and bandwidth you’ll need.