Archive for October, 2014

South Korea web hosting for website targeting Chinese users?

Friday, October 17th, 2014

Hosting a website in China is complex, and almost impossible for foreign companies and non-China residents. Should one consider hosting in South Korea when targeting Chinese users?

Well, it depends. South Korea has some of the most advanced IT infrastructure in the world and the internet connection speed locally is second to none. This does not mean however that access to websites hosted in Korea is extremely fast as this will depend of the international bandwidth of the specific datacenter, local internet speed of the user and the connectivity between the user ISP and the South Korean internet carrier. Furthermore, despite being a neighbor to China, South Korea is not within the Great Firewall, the system that notoriously slow down (or worse, block) access to overseas websites in China.

South Korean datacenters are also known to be very restrictive for contents hosted on their network (which would apply even if the website targets overseas visitors). We have seen cases where after adults pages were found on a website hosted at a specific Seoul datacenter, the whole server was taken down and the host had to migrate all other accounts to a different server and IP address, after the website in question was terminated.

In real life situation, South Korea would make sense for hosting websites targeting Beijing, Tianjin, Qingdao or the Northern or North-East region of China. Other conditions being the same, region south of Shanghai should get better access speed by hosting in Taiwan or Hong Kong.

SinoHosting is a web host that we recommend when it comes to hosting in South Korea. Packages are affordable, activation is done within 6 hours in most cases, and, differently from other South Korean providers, they do not require to sign documents or provide copies of passports and other identification documents prior to service activation. For more details, please visit

How to host a website in China, as a non-resident?

Thursday, October 16th, 2014

China is bound to become the largest economy in the world, and companies of all sizes from around the world have or are planning to sell their products or offer their services to Chinese consumers and businesses. The Great Firewall severely restricts access to overseas websites in China, either by blocking them, or by making the access speed extremely slow. In order to provide the best user experience to Chinese users visiting their websites, overseas companies therefore would preferably host their websites within the firewall, on a mainland China server.

The problem in doing so is the ICP license requirement which  the Chinese government has put in place and basically restricts hosting in China to companies incorporated within the country.

What options are there to host your contents in China?

First, you can consider teaming up with a Chinese company which will serve as your marketing partner in China. The ICP license can be applied under their name which allows you to host your website in China. Make sure to keep control over the domain name you have registered for this venture, to prevent it to be stolen by the partner.

Second, if you have a Chinese individual which you trust, you can apply for a personal ICP license under their personal name. This option is not 100% legit if you are running a business site, furthermore in case of audit the ICP license will be revoked and your website blacklisted.

Third, depending of your investment capabilities, you can set up a new company in China. Registered capital requirements are been waived in multiple Chinese cities which make it easier to set up an operation in the country, even with a limited presence.

Finally, you may consider instead hosting at a nearby location for a relatively faster access (as compared to sites hosted on US or European servers). Such locations include Hong Kong, Taiwan, South Korea and Japan. One host that we regularly recommend on this blog is SinoHosting which offers both China and multiple nearby countries hosting at affordable prices.

We hope this post has been useful. If you have more suggestions in terms of hosting in China for non-China residents, please feel free to post a comment.