What comes into your mind when you first hear the word database? Most of us will most probably shy away and think “oh, that is too technical for me to understand”. But it is not, actually.
We are here to talk about what databases are and how important these are to your website. You can also assess if you really need one for the site that you are thinking of creating so that you can effectively check if the other web hosting solution packages out there will meet your expectations.
A database needs to be efficient in processing information so that at any time that you need an update, you can get answers. Through a database, you can get answers to questions like:
- How many books do we have now?
- How many of these books are non-fiction?
- How many books were purchased last week?
- What type of books did we lend throughout the whole year?
- Are there books written by Robert Wolke in your library?
Apply this way of thinking into your website. Your website may contain lots and lots of information that needs routine organization and retrieval of data. This is when you may need a database to keep things running smoothly.
This is when you will need a database to process the data that you have. Some data may be tagged as photos, articles or videos.
Some of them may be tagged as related to tennis news, weather updates, celebrity news etc. In order for you to tell your user that a certain article is about weather news, you must TAG that article as such and then store it in your database so that at any time someone asks you about it, you can retrieve it. It is really like a virtual library.
To give you a clearer idea as to how databases are used in websites, here are some examples:
- Sites that are frequently updated like fashion blogs, news websites and social media sites. These sites need to store and classify the content that they publish and you need an efficient database to do that.
- Sites that have lots and lots of products like eCommerce sites (think Amazon or Nordstrom)
- Sites that have user generated content or submissions like 9gag, Chive and even Tumblr
- Sites that need search functions into their websites like a directory listing
Of course, it is a big perk if your hosting provider says you can have unlimited databases running in your package. This means you don’t have to limit yourself to one massive database – you can have several installations running INDEPENDENTLY at the same time. One of the web hosting companies that offer unlimited databases is FatCow.
There are other things unlimited from iPage, too, such as:
- Unlimited data storage
- Unlimited data traffic
- Unlimited hosted domains
- Unlimited email accounts