Hosting Bandwidth, is essentially the amount of traffic or data that is transferred to or from your website over a certain period of time. This will generally include all types of traffic, from FTP traffic, images loading, hot-linked images loading, web views, etc. Hosting Bandwidth can be thought of as a highway, you have cars going both directions to reach their destinations. With a website, there is always data coming in, and going out.
Generally speaking, most web hosting accounts today measure bandwidth differently than they describe it. If you are shopping for a web hosting plan, you will see bandwidth allowances advertised in Gigabytes (GB). For example, you may see a web hosting plan that offers 1000GB of hosting bandwidth. You may also see situations where 1000GB will be referred to as 1 Terabyte, or 1TB. This is a generality used when referring to these two labels, however this can be misleading. 1000GB is not really 1TB, in fact its quite a bit less. 1TB is actually closer to 1024GB, a 24GB difference. In web hosting, 24GB is a substantial amount of hosting bandwidth to burn through. Most websies will be very hard pressed to use 24GB of hosting bandwidth in a month.
The amount of hosting bandwidth that you have used for your hosting account can easily be checked for most reputable hosting providers by simply logging into your control panel for your hosting account and viewing the hosting storage and hosting bandwidth usage information. The current usage is likely to be represented as a percentage of your total allocation or the month. This way you can easily check that you do not go over your allocation and either be charged more for it or have your service temporarily disrupted because you have used more hosting bandwidth that you were allowed.
If you own your own website there are a number of things you can do to ensure that your web pages on your website load quickly and that you don’t use up all of your allocated monthly hosting bandwidth. The main thing is to check document, image and file sizes that are accessible to be downloaded from your website and try and make them as small as possible. For a number of files that you may download as a group, we suggest putting them all into a zip file so that there is a single file to download and also as a zip file is compressed, overall it will make the download a lot faster as the file is smaller. If you are showing images on your website, make sure they have been resized to smaller resolutions and are optimized, most of the time your computer monitor cannot display the resolutions that new high megabit digital cameras are able to take so resize them before you upload them to your website. Take this scenario as an example. Say you have a 6-megapixel camera and it takes photos that are 4MB in size, and say that photo gets downloaded 10,000 times … that is in effect 40,000MB of hosting bandwidth that you have used up with that one file! – Now, what if you change the resolution of that image to be a lot smaller so instead of say 3000 pixels x 2000 pixels (that no computer monitor can currently display), change it to be 800 pixels by 600 pixels before uploading it. That same photo would now be 46KB instead of 4MB in size, and would still be very nicely displayed on your website. The big difference is that if that 46KB photo then got downloaded 10,000 times, you would only be using up 4,600MB of hosting bandwidth, a savings of 35,400MB of hosting bandwidth per month!