The e-Commerce sector attracts more and more people every year and for good reason. According to a study funded by Retailmenot , 17.8% of UK retail spending took place online in 2017. This represents a total of 77.63bn GBP in online sales. It is therefore essential for retailers, SMEs, very small businesses or large groups to take their place on the net. However, choosing the right hosting services for an e-Commerce site is crucial. The hosting must make your site fully accessible to Internet users, while maintaining efficiency and security.
01 - What is ‘hosting’ for an e-Commerce site?
Definition of hosting:
Hosting consists of making an e-Commerce site accessible on the internet by connecting it to a server. The latter stores all data and pages relating to the e-Commerce site, making the site accessible to all Internet users.
What rules and laws are there associated with hosting?
To host your e-Commerce site via an external server, you must determine the volume of your data. The volume of products for sale, an estimation of the average traffic, disk space needed, and so on, are all factors to be considered. The host will then make your site accessible on the internet and preserve all data. This secures access to your site by performing regular updates.
The Electronic Commerce (EC Directive) Regulations 2002, Regulation 17, provides that a service provider shall not be liable for unlawful or illegal content, sent or posted by any of its users, so long as the service provider does not initiate the transmission. This is on the grounds the ISP is not aware of the information that passes through. In the event that the hosting company becomes aware of an offense on one of the sites it hosts, it is obliged to interrupt the transmission of the data concerned.
02 - Hosting your e-Commerce site yourself
Technical constraints of hosting
Hosting your e-Commerce site alone requires advanced computer skills. The installation and configuration of the web server are carried out alone without technical support or computer assistance. If you do not have strong knowledge in the field, suffice to say will be very difficult for you to host your own e-Commerce site.
You should also be aware that you will encounter technical difficulties in terms of power and connection speed. An overflow of files or sustained heavy traffic on your site will engender the slow loading of web pages. Or worse, your site may disappear from the net in case of an internet or power outage. As you can imagine, unforeseen circumstances, a manipulation error, or inexpert use of the software will impact directly on the connection of your site to the server.
Security: an essential part of hosting an e-Commerce site
The biggest disadvantage of self-hosting an e-Commerce site is security. By opting for self-hosting, you decide to compromise security whilst this is a fundamental requirement for the data on your site.
Anti-virus and regular updates must be provided to ensure the proper functioning of your e-Commerce website and prevent hacking.
Hosting your e-Commerce site alone requires constant vigilance, both with regard to the software used, and any applications. As a host, you will be held solely responsible in court, for any phishing or hacking of your site for malicious purposes. You are responsible for all the content transiting through your server.
Dedicated hosting: significant costs
Entrusting the hosting of ones e-Commerce site to a provider will not allow you to save money: on the contrary. Between the price of the domain name, the power of your server, the volume of storage space and the desired level of bandwidth, the invoice can easily reach large sums (for a large site, the cost can be up to £300 on average per month). Do not forget to include any maintenance costs, and the cost of interventions by specialised computer experts in case of major failure.
There are less expensive alternatives, such as hosting on shared server farms. However, the attractive cost is often at the expense of quality: the servers have narrow bandwidths and greatly reduced speed.
03 - Actinic Hosting
As we saw earlier, the choice of hosting is a crucial step in the creation of an e-Commerce site: the very performance of your site depends on it. A bad host, synonymous with an often inaccessible site, could harm your business and your online store. Here are 3 good reasons to choose Actinic for your e-Commerce hosting.
Our hosting services:
- High performance (99.96% uptime)
The Actinic server farm is housed in a highly secure, world-class Data Center that allows the pooling of technical infrastructures and therefore reduces hosting costs for all Actinic customers (included in the subscription).
Managed by the best specialists, Actinic servers are among the most efficient and reliable on the market. In conclusion, you do not have to worry about hosting your e-Commerce site, our experts take care of everything with complete transparency.
Security of Premises:
- Fire detection system by particle analysis.
- FM200 fire extinguishing system.
- Internal and external video surveillance system with 24-hour recording.
- Motion detection sensor and intruder alarm.
- Biomatic access control system.
- Visual verification of all people entering the data spaces.
- Reinforced doors and openings.
- Anti-seismic foundations.
- High voltage power supply of the building by two networks and two independent electricity suppliers.
- Power supply of server arrays regulated by protected and redundant inverters.
- Diesel emergency generators (with 9 days of autonomy)
Thermal and hydrometric regulation:
- Controlled air conditioning evenly distributed under raised floors to ensure stability of temperature and humidity (1/2 degree and 1% tolerance.)
IP networks connection:
- The security of connections is ensured by a total redundancy in terms of access and bandwidth.
- All routers are Cisco branded and fully redundant.
Security of data:
- All the information is backed up every night and a copy of the backups is stored off the premises.
- Monitoring Servers
- Servers are checked from outside the building by an independent organisation.
Software systems developed by our team constantly monitor the proper functioning of the different modules of the Actinic system.
Our employees are paged in case of any problems on a server.