Benefits of Your Own Dedicated Server
The main benefit of having servers dedicated to your company's files is that it gives your company complete control of all of the software configurations of your site. It also allows you to use scripts and programs that change the way your site is used, or give your site different levels of interactivity that you wouldn't be able to take advantage of otherwise. Your IT department will be able to update and install software on your web server as if it were another hard drive in your normal network.
Dedicated Hosting Compared to Shared Hosting
When you purchase a hosting package, there are two main types to choose from: dedicated hosting and shared hosting. They are basically exactly what you would expect from their names. A dedicated hosting plan means that there are web servers dedicated to your company's internet software and files alone. A shared hosting plan means that your files are on a server that houses the files from other companies as well. Sharing a web server is like sharing a computer hard drive – all of the basic aspects of the drive have to be the same so that everyone can work from the files it contains. A dedicated server gives you the freedom to reformat it to fit your specific needs.
The New World of Virtual Private Hosting
A new form of hosting called virtual private hosting is becoming more and more popular. This option doesn't actually offer servers dedicated to one company at a time. It creates partitions in the servers so that each partition behaves as if it were dedicated to a single company while all of the partitions are housed in a single server. Virtual private hosting is far less expensive than dedicated hosting plans, but they offer almost identical levels of flexibility and customization possibilities.
Security and Technical Control
When you have web servers dedicated to your software and files, you have much better control of who can access or make changes to the files. Shared servers allow more people to get into the shared file space, and are easier to corrupt. If your company is the only company with the rights and ability to access your web server, you can maintain a tight control of the security of your web site. This can be particularly important if you plan to do online business transactions that include credit cards or other personal information. It is far less expensive to maintain a dedicated server and avoid problems than it is to deal with problems after they happen.