Every website needs to be hosted somewhere, but there are some caveats on how to choose your host for adult websites. You see, adult websites are different than ‘normal’ websites for many reasons, the content being the most important one, of course. But there are also other considerations like bandwidth, speed, and storage that may be unique to this kind of business.
In this post, I’ll cover some of the main technical problems you, as an adult website owner will face and how choosing a proper host can make your life easier in the long run. We’ll also talk about some existing adult web hosting providers and give some recommendations to help you get started.
The main problems hosting providers have with adult websites
Of course, the main issue when it comes to choosing a host for your adult website is that most web hosting companies just won’t host any adult content. This means your options are much more limited in this business than in a different one. Bear in mind that this is not only limited to porn. Any adult content can be problematic for the majority of hosting providers in the market, which is why you should use adult-friendly hosting providers. There are a few reasons for that, and the simplest solution for hosting companies to deal with them is just refusing to host this type of content altogether. Some of these issues are:
Legal problems with adult content
Obviously, hosting porn and other adult content may cause some legal problems for the host. You, of course, will only upload legal content to your website, but do you know if this content is also legal in Djibouti? I don’t think so. Remember that the internet is global, so some content might be legal in some countries and not in others. This would pose an extra burden on the hosting companies because they may also be liable for content their customers upload.
Keep in mind that this does not apply only to porn. Many other adult-oriented businesses could have the same or similar issues. Any website dealing with gambling, alcohol, guns, drugs, prostitution, and of course porn, could face legal issues depending on where the site is hosted or accessed.
Noisy neighbor effect
On cheaper shared hosts there are many websites hosted on a single ‘machine’. All these websites share the same resources (CPU, RAM, disk, bandwidth). In most cases, this is fine, like most simple websites use a similar amount of resources, and servers are configured with a certain usage profile in mind.
Porn websites, however, can be very popular and receive massive amounts of traffic. This is a great thing for you, the website owner, but not necessarily for the hosting provider. A big and popular website on the same node as smaller ones puts an extra load on that node, making all other websites slow or crash.
Viruses and malware
It’s no secret that some of the ads on adult websites can be… shady, to put it mildly. If you’ve ever tried to use your mom’s computer, you’re probably familiar with malware and viruses infecting people’s computers. But do you know they can also infect servers? They definitely do.
There are malicious scripts and viruses that can infect your site and then start firing emails, or editing website files, and adding links to scam websites and other malicious content. Most hosting companies do not want to have their IP addresses on any spam blacklists, especially if these addresses are shared with their other customers.
Of course, this can also happen to ‘normal’ websites, but if you’ve ever been to any porn website, you know the ratio of shady stuff on adult websites is way bigger.
We could have filed this under legal issues, but I think it’s special enough to deserve its own entry. The Digital Millennium Copyright Act is a piece of American legislation which deals with copyright and intellectual property. One part of that law states that content MUST be taken down after a request is made by the content owner.
Unless you are producing your own content, then any adult website you build will serve content owned by someone else, who can then file a complaint to you and your hosting provider demanding for that content to be removed. This can be very annoying for you and also for your host.
Which hosts accept adult content?
Fortunately, there are still many hosts which do accept adult content. You should definitely pick one of those because if you try to host your adult website on hosts which do not explicitly say that adult content is fine, then you’re risking having your entire website deleted without any warning. And you definitely do not want that!
This is not an extensive list, and there are many other hosting companies out there who will gladly host your porn empire. Leave a comment if you know of any host that should be on this list.
Hostinger offers shared hosting, VPS, and dedicated servers. They have servers in Europe and in the US and their prices are very attractive for beginners. Their shared host does not have a lot of resources, though. So be ready to upgrade when you hit the limit of your plan. They have servers in the Netherlands where they technically do not have to honor DMCA complaints, but they probably will anyway. Also, they have no problems hosting adult content.
Frantech, also known as BuyVM offers only unmanaged VPS or dedicated servers. They also have servers in the US and in Europe. This might be a good choice if you know how to configure your own server, as their prices are pretty attractive. Also, they do ignore DMCA requests in the Luxembourg servers, which is pretty nice. They do have a shortage of servers though, so you might need to wait a while before you can actually sign up for one.
TMD Hosting has data centers all over the world and offers a wide range of services from shared hosting to dedicated servers and a lot in between. They also have good prices and are a good option for beginners. Just don’t expect stellar support. As far as I know, they do not ignore DMCA requests.
M3Server is very welcoming of adult content. In fact, they are even recommended by some of the adult website tools. Perhaps they would even offer some sort of support for those, given that they have many customers already in the adult business. They are based in the US but have data centers in many other locations around the world. Their managed VPS and dedicated server options can be pretty good as your project scales.
Contabo is a very popular hosting provider for adult websites. They are based in Germany and have a wide array of options for VPS and dedicated services with great starting prices. They have a reputation for being reliable and fast, so it’s a good option for stability and speeding up your websites. They might still honor DMCA requests though, as Germany has some pretty strict laws for copyright and intellectual property.
Choosing a web host for adult websites requires some special attention. It’s not exactly rocket science, but it’s also not as easy as just choosing the cheapest host available. Of course, there are many more technical factors than the ones described here, but let’s keep that topic for another post.