The web hosting industry is a competitive market. Naturally, when you get into such a competitive niche you see companies that are struggling. Sometimes, they are struggling so much that they will tell you what you want to hear just to make a few bucks off of you.
These people are the “Unlimited Bandwidth and Unlimited Disk Space” companies. If you have not heard it elsewhere, please allow me to be the first. There is no such thing as unlimited bandwidth. Typically the way it works is that a large corporation will rent out small chunks of the bandwidth they are capable of providing to smaller companies. These smaller companies turn around and do the same to the web hosts. These web hosts, again, do the same separation method and sell these small “chunks” to you based on your needs.
These unlimited web hosting companies are banking on the idea that you will never use more than what you might would have used if you were using a package from a web host that does not offer these types of promises. There are several problems that can be caused when running into these types of promises.
A severely unmonitored web hosting company can end up having a customer use up all the space that they were allotted by their datacenter. In this case, every person using the server (all clients under the web host) will have their websites go down because the datacenter will either shut off the server when the web host exceeds their limit. If that does not occur then they will charge the web host with huge bandwidth fees. The end result will quickly lead to the web hosting company being upside down in their profits and they will likely be forced to close the company. The end result being the same, your website being offline.
If the web hosting company that offers the myth of “unlimited bandwidth” does monitor well, they will shut your website down if you do exceed what their own limitations are for your website. They will not risk having their server shutdown or losing their other customers simply because you are using too much bandwidth. Therefore, no one actually provides real unlimited bandwidth. It simply is not possible.
As for web space (commonly referred to as disk space), the same concept applies. When you buy a computer, you probably always look at the specifications that it has. One of the primary ones will always be your hard drive. Servers are exactly the same way; each server can only hold a certain amount of capacity. Just like bandwidth, they are banking on the idea that you will only use a very limited amount of web space (most websites do). If you fill their web server up, more than likely they will not resort to adding another hard drive to keep you as a $4.00 per month customer. They will tell you that you need to find another web host or pay extra for all the space you are using. These companies simply cannot stay in business at this rate. There is a reason why all of the biggest web hosting companies have limitations on their shared plans. It is not because they simply want to; it is to protect every single client they have from the dreadful downtime you want to avoid when you are a web host. As well, reputable companies will always want to be forthcoming in what you are allowed to use. Every web host has limitations on your usage, it is simply a matter of if they are willing to show them to you or not.
If you are running an online business, be sure to go with a reputable host that does not offer these unfulfilling promises. When choosing to run an online business such as ecommerce, you will want to ensure that your website stays online. One way of doing this is to simply stay away from companies that make false promises.