Unlimited bandwidth seems to be a popular offer for most web hosting services. But there're also many complaints for website down because of overloading on server. So we know the unlimited stuff is only a marketing term to get orders. But how can we save the bandwidth usage on our website and avoid potential issues? This is our today's topic.
How is website bandwidth calculate exactly?
There's a formula of bandwidth calculation — Page view x Page size + Download size x Download times
PV(Page View) –Means the total number of website requests within a specific period. For example there're total of 100 website visitors with average 5 pages view per visitor, then the website daily PV is 5 x 100.
Hits –The number of requests to every elements on web page (Any element like picture or flash etc is considered the page element)
Daily bytes –The total bytes of web site element requests per day.
Because the hosting server resource is limited, if one or several sites are generating large traffic, the CPU, RAM and I/O usage will burst up and finally affect other websites on same server. Regardless the advanced technologies from hosting provider, the total resource is always limited. If we over used what we're allocated we'll get punished. That's why we should evaluate carefully about which service is most suitable but not only pay attention to the low price.
Tips on how to save website bandwidth
There're many factors to affect total bandwidth usage such as picture and video. Here let's check out one by one.
►Unless it's a must, it's not a good idea to upload many videos to hosting account directly. Instead we can make good use of the third party services like youtube for video storage purpose and embel them to our web pages directly.
►Picture would be the second most bandwidth consuming factor on website. We can either optimize the picture size or upload to a third party service in case we have a large size. how to optimize the size? There're many tools available on internet. For example if we're using photoshop for picture design, we can save the picture as web use (Press Ctrl+Shift+Alt+S). In this way the actual picture size will be compressed a lot with the minimum color loss.
►Add hotlink protection to website. A quality web resource is always republished by other people, but many new posters will keep the original elements link and eat our server bandwidth direcly. You can avoid such linking via htaccess or web.config file depends your server OS. if you're not sure how to, feel free to contact us and we'll be happy to guide through.
►Enable Gzip. It's simply to compress your page to save bandwidth usage. Take wordpress for instance, there's gzip plugin available, simply add it from admin panel.
►Optimize the website structure. A bad website structure will take long time to load and cause high usage when lots of visitors are opening.
►Block search engine bots. If you have checked your website logs you might have found there're many traffic generated by various search engine bots. Since the today's search engine market is mainly focus on google, yahoo and bing, we can block all other search engines in robots.txt, it will save bandwidth usage greatly.
►Monitor the website usage via third party tools like google webmaster tools or Awstats and optimize our website. Such tools will tell us directly which part of our website is generating the most traffic.
Is that all? Absolutely not. You might have designed a perfect website with all optimization but still get unbearble slowless. In that case we should evaluate if we're dealing with the right hosting provider. No matter how we optimize the websit itself, if large visits are happening, a super cheap hostng plan will never be suitable to handle. So finally, get a correct hosting provider will be essential task to keep our website running healthy.