How Much Bandwidth Do I Need For My Website?

Numerous hosting companies advertise "unlimited" bandwidth. But, what exactly does that mean?
How Much Bandwidth Do I Need For My Website?

Bandwidth is the term used to describe the highest data transfer rate of an internet or network connection. It is the quantity of data that can be transmitted through a particular connection in an amount of time. The greater the bandwidth, the more data can be transmitted simultaneously.

What effect does bandwidth have on my website?

Bandwidth determines how fast users can view your site’s pages. Suppose your bandwidth isn’t high and you have lots of visitors. In that case, most of them will experience difficulties in loading your website pages.

You should be aware of this when you design your website and your hosting service provider. If the page’s load time exceeds four seconds, users may not be able to return to your site. The more bandwidth you have is, the more users can visit your website simultaneously.

Why does my website require more bandwidth?

As your website expands over time, the number of monthly visitors also increases. Therefore, the bandwidth and storage requirements will also grow in line with the growth of your site.

If your website is frequently introducing new pages, such as blogs and pages for products, it’s a wise idea to purchase a hosting plan that has plenty of bandwidth. With enough bandwidth, your customers will be able to access these pages without any effort.

Bandwidth requirements are contingent upon your website’s type. Even a connection with a low bandwidth can suffice for websites with more text but not as much content. Text is extremely economical, and it uses very little bandwidth. However, the addition of audio, images, and embedded videos can make a difference to the overall load time for those with slower connections.

The availability of a high-speed connection is crucial for websites that offer streaming media, websites that load lots of high-resolution media on one page, or provide large downloads of data.

Bandwidth is usually measured in terms of millions of bits/second (megabits each second also known as the Mbps) (or billions of bits every second) (gigabits every second, also known as Gbps).

How do you calculate the bandwidth required for your site?

Storage and bandwidth are two crucial elements to be considered when creating websites and choosing the right hosting service. Storage space can be easily managed by increasing it in your plan or deleting or offloading content; however, bandwidth can be more complex. In addition, you might not be capable of anticipating bandwidth requirements and adjusting it in time.

Below are some steps for calculating how much bandwidth you will require:

  • Find out the average size of your site in kilobytes (KB).
  • Multiply the size of the average page (in KB) by the average number of monthly visitors.
  • Multiply the results of step 2 times the number of page views per visit.

If you don’t have a lot of media files or perform streaming a lot, then you ought to be able to do it with 10GB per month.

This is only the beginning of understanding your bandwidth requirements. You should also add an allowance for additional traffic in case of sudden surges in traffic, such as those caused by social media websites, or festive seasons for websites that sell goods and services could increase bandwidth usage in those particular seasons.

Assume your plan allows for 1,000 visitors per month, but you get four thousand in one month. Most of the 4,000 people who try to visit your site will be unable to do so because of a lack of available bandwidth. This is a good reason to get more than the bandwidth you typically require to accommodate users during traffic spikes.

When selecting a web host, pick one that will allow you to increase your disk space and bandwidth should you require it in the future.

Are hosting plans with unlimited bandwidth a good idea?

Unlimited bandwidth is an excellent idea since you do not know when you might experience a spike in website visits. But many hosting companies that offer unlimited plans come with specific conditions and restrictions.

The majority of unlimited hosting companies use Terms of Service (TOS) agreements to regulate what their hosting service may use. Therefore, it is essential to ensure that these terms aren’t affecting the content you upload.

It is advisable to select a host with limited bandwidth yet with adequate allocations to ensure you get the best quality service.

Can I cut down the amount of bandwidth my site uses?

It is a good idea to determine the bandwidth requirements of your website and then find the best web hosting plan. However, it is equally important to continually optimize your site to ensure that it can handle its bandwidth requirements.

Your content file size, as well as the number of visits to your site, will be the most significant influence on your bandwidth requirements. Of course, it is a must for more visitors to your site, but you’ll require optimising the file size of your content for optimal loading times.

These are a few of the things that are possible to do to maximise the bandwidth you use:

1. Offload your content or change it into an image source

You could outsource the host of the images we use to an external Content Delivery Network or an external website. There are many free image-sharing sites available on the internet. Ex: Imageshack, Flickr, Photobucket, Amazon S3

2. Make sure that HTTP compression is turned on

A compression algorithm for HTTP in your server can be responsible for around two-thirds of the reduction in text bandwidth. This allows you to quickly transmit JavaScript, HTML, and CSS files to your users’ browsers. HTTP compression is an even better advantage for SSL-enabled sites. It decreases the amount of data that must be decrypted and encrypted. It also accelerates the loading process.

3. Transfer your RSS feeds

A lot of websites offer RSS feeds. Instead of visiting a site every day to check what’s changed, RSS readers automatically regularly pull up the most current RSS feed. Google FeedBurner is a service that provides customized RSS feeds and management tools for podcasters, bloggers, and other online content creators.

While this could be beneficial to reduce your bandwidth consumption, it could also impact the regular users of your site and visitors, so keep this in your thoughts.

4. Maximise the dimensions of JavaScript or CSS

Reduce the size of your JavaScript and CSS files to make them better to transmit and load. Another alternative is to reference JavaScripts from outside instead of embedding them on every page.

5. Build simpler pages

Eliminate all unnecessary text, images, or other files to make your pages as compact as you can. Utilise PNG as well as GIF images to cut down on bandwidth. Eliminate any unwanted tags, white spaces and comments. Reduce the number of Meta tags to the ones that are absolutely required.

In Summary

Your bandwidth requirements will depend on various factors, including the dimensions of the website and the number of visits your site gets and the bandwidth your hosting provider offers you.

But, it’s something that must be considered starting from the moment you start creating your website. It is also necessary to host your assets in a way that guarantees optimal bandwidth usage.

Author

  • emily gibson profile

    Emily has been a Content Writer and SEO Consultant for the last 10 years. She is passionate about helping people understand about search engine optimisation and has designed courses and materials for numerous digital marketing agencies.

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