What is a Database and why do I need to know about them for small business web hosting?
A database is a collection of information. Data is information. It can be names, addresses, locations of other information such as URLs. This website uses a database to store all the information you see, including the links.
A database management system is a piece of software that allows you to communicate with the database. The database is just the information stored in a computer in some structured file or files.
The database management system used on this website is MySQL. Other examples of database management systems are PostgreSQL, Microsoft SQL server, Microsoft Access, Oracle, IBM DB2 and SQLite.
A database is useless without a database management system. It is just information sitting in files on your computer. A book is useless if you can’t read it.
Why is it important to know about databases for a small business website?
Choosing the web hosting service provider for your small business involves evaluating what needs you have. For instance, you will need to be sure that you have MySQL if you will be using WordPress. There are many web hosts that provide multiple options for database management systems.
Before you decide which web hosting company to go with you really need to sit down and decide what you plan on using the web host for. Will you be using it for a blog? Will you be using it as a way to advertise online specials? Will your website be your only form of business such as selling eBooks?
BlueHost provides MySQL and PostgreSQL. BlueHost is the web hosting company that I use to host this website and others. I chose BlueHost because they offer more options for content management systems than I can ever need. This means I can grow as my needs grow.
I can begin with something fast and simple like WordPress and progress up to a very complex website using Drupal. There are applications for education websites such as Moodle or help centers using Help Center Live. They even offer website builders such as Weebly or eCommerce applications such as OpenCart.