How Much Bandwidth Do I Need For My Business Web Site?

If you ask a techie type the question posed by the title, you might get an more of an answer than you really need. You see, the question is a bit of a riddle, like the old “How much wood would a wood chuck chuck if a wood chuck could chuck wood?” Of course wood chucks don’t chuck wood, and the term “bandwidth” is a technical misnomer. What you want to know is how many bytes of files and data will I need to operate my website for a month. But any techie will tell you that the term really describes the amount of data transferred per second. Who cares, right? But stuff like this drives the techies nuts.

Let’s get back to your question. As I said, bandwidth for business people like us is a measure of how much data you use in a month’s time. What you want to know is how much you’re going to use and how much is it going to cost you? Am I right?

If that’s the question, here is formula that will give you the answer:

Average Daily Visitors x Average Page Views x Average Page Size x31 = monthly bandwidth

Now isn’t that simple? Ok, let’s say your website, Superwidgets.com, gets an average of a hundred visitors a day (an exceptional number of visitors for a newly opened site, by the way). You have 10 pages on your website. Each page is 30 kilobytes in size. Kilobytes? Don’t worry about them; they’ll take care of themselves. I used the figure 30 kilobytes because that is the size of retail giant Amazon’s home page and I figured most small businesses are going to use less space than that. Finally, there are always 31 days in the web-hosting month. So, we have the following calculation:

100 x 10 x 30720 x 31= 952,320,000

Over 900 million. Whew! Now that’s a big number. Or it would be if we were talking money. Fortunately we’re talking bytes and it’s really insignificant. Most economy hosting plans offer at least 300 gigs a month. A gig is a billion bytes. That’s 300 times what your website used this month. If you use videos you will use more, but it would have to be a pretty substantial video to put much of a dent in your quota. How much should you pay for one of these plans? Five dollars a month or less. You can get five times that amount for less than ten dollars a month. So what are you waiting for?

Oh, and by the way, the answer to the wood chuck riddle is 700 lbs of wood. Just think, before the Internet we’d never have found the answer!

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