Hosting Jargon Buster

The world of hosting can be a bit of a vocabulary minefield for novices. Understanding web jargon might seem like a daunting process, especially when many web-hosting companies don’t care to explain the intricacies of their terminology.

To give you a head start and avoid any confusion, we’ve put together a list of the most commonly asked about terms – and what they mean if you’re not a web developer.


Otherwise known as your Domain Name Server. In order to explain these little fellers, let’s start with explaining that the internet is made up of IP addresses – these IP addresses are really long and quite hard to remember. Instead of using IP addresses to direct us to websites, we use web addresses (like Domain Name Servers have replaced IP address – they’re easy to remember and they take us to the site we’ve requested, using it’s URL.


Short for, control panel. Just like you have a control panel on your computer, you have a control panel for your website. As an administrator, this is where you can make changes to your website, such as uploading files, changing pictures and altering codes.

SSL Certificate

These guys have been a big topic as of late, because they are all about your security when you’re surfing the net. SSL stands for Secure Socket Layer and it characterised by the little padlock you see next to a URL, in the bar at the top of your web browser. A site with https:// at the beginning of its URL is a secure site – meaning that it uses encryption to keep your data safe when you make payments etc. It is important to remember not to buy anything online if the site does not have an SSL Certificate.


Subdomain is simply a domain name under the umbrella of your main domain – for example: is our domain, but is a subdomain with its own hosting and SEO ranking.


VPS stands for Virtual Private Server. Essentially, you need physical hardware to run a site, but you can ‘rent’ it off a VPS supplier. For more information on how VPS’s work and why you might need one, check out our blog.


VPN, not to be confused with VPS, refers to a Virtual Private Network. Using a VPN gives you a completely secure connection to internet, as opposed to unsecure networks such as public Wi-Fi or coffee shop connections. Government agencies and institutions with private data often use VPNs, but you can also purchase one for yourself if you’re travelling or are concerned about your digital privacy.

Reseller Web Hosting

Reseller web hosting is the process of allowing customers to use a web host’s technology and hardware. Many web developers and agencies offer a web service in this way because it allows you to fully customise your hosting package, without having to deal with huge hosting providers and anonymous customer service. As a customer, you deal with the reseller rather than a huge conglomerate.

These terms simply scratch the surface when it comes to hosting, web development and other services. If you’d like to know more about web hosting, check out our blog, read more about our web hosting services or get in touch for one to one support.

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