You just saw a pop-up message, that you have exceeded your bandwidth! And then you get a higher amount of bill because you used the service inspire of its limited usage. Or you can say that bandwidth is like a tax, you have to pay it no matter what. But when it comes to hosting, there are various ways to reduce bandwidth in hosting. So currently, you must be having a question what exactly is bandwidth usage?
Bandwidth usage is nothing but the total number of information that has been flowing to your website every month. You have various files on your website and those files are of specific sizes. So whenever a visitor is downloading those files, your bandwidth usage gets escalated by the amount of the file that is being downloaded.
The math is simple here, the larger the file, the larger will be the usage of the bandwidth. And also, if you are expecting more traffic to your website, the usage of the bandwidth is going to be more.
So basically, if you are planning to bake a small cake, you need a small tin. And if you are planning to bake a big size cake, you obviously need a big tin. The bandwidth is the cake here.
So how can you calculate how much bandwidth do you need?
in order to do that you need to know the file size of each web page. Once you know the file size of each page, then multiply it by total pages that are there on your website. Once you get the figure, multiply it with the total number of page views you are expecting per month from your website. To determine how much bandwidth you need, estimate the file size of each web page, and then multiply by the number of pages on your website.
How to check the bandwidth usage
In order to find out how much bandwidth your website has been using, you just need to login to the cPanel of your website. Once you log in, on the dashboard itself you will find the Bandwidth option. You can see that in the above screenshot. Once you click on it, you will be able to see the bandwidth usage of past 24 hours, past week, past month You can see the data up to last 3 months here.
How to reduce bandwidth usage
1. Watch the images
Images are, of course, an important part of your website. But have you thought that if you are uploading too many images on your web page, it is going to take longer time than usual to load faster. And also it will consume a larger volume of bandwidth when the visitors are downloading it. But then you need to add a few images and that should be of higher quality.
So in that case, you can make use of online tools like Kraken.io. This tool reduces the image size and then you can upload it on your web page.
If your website is on HTML and has small images, then the bandwidth usage is going to be very less. But if you are having a website on WordPress, then you will have to reduce the size of the images.
2. Enabling HTTP Compression
4. Embedding videos
If you are looking to save on your bandwidth usage, then instead of uploading a video on your website, you can simply embed the video. So when you are embedding say YouTube video on your website, so when the user is playing the video, the bandwidth of the original host, that is the YouTube is getting pulled in. So this is a smart way to save on your bandwidth.
5. Caching the website
If you are planning to caching your website, then do not forget to set an expiry date in the HTTP header. Setting up a date will keep refreshing the content on the visitors’ browser from time to time. So what will happen is that the browser with saving a copy of your website. And whenever a visitor is visiting your website, the pages are getting copied directly from the browser and not from your web server.
Online tools to monitor bandwidth
You will find a handful of tools on the web if you are looking to monitor the bandwidth. There are some tools which come for free and a few are paid. You can try your hands on tools like Cacti, Splunk, OpManager, BandwidthD to name a few.
When you are choosing a hosting service, you must have seen many times that these hosting providers say that they provide unlimited bandwidth. So before saying yes to any of the services, you must first check the hidden things. Some companies say that bandwidth is free only up to 16 GB. In this case, you are trapped.
If you are seeing that a hosting company offers unmetered bandwidth, which seems more logical than unlimited one. Here you need to pay an agreed amount and the hosting company will not measure the bandwidth at all.
So the next time when you are planning to update your website, then again you have to calculate the complete file size of all the web pages. Estimate the monthly visits and then you will come to know how much bandwidth is getting used in web hosting.