SEOClerks

How to choose right web hosting



Enter a reason for deleting this comment

How to choose right web hosting

In today’s global business culture web hosting is crucial to success. Businesses live or die by their server uptime, as potential customers expect 24/7 access to a business’ website. Downtime means a loss in traffic and as a consequence a loss in sales, something no business wants to happen. Security, bandwidth, reliability and cost are the key factors to consider when looking for a web host, although there are others to take into account.

Server Uptime / Reliability

The primary requirement when picking a web host is 24/7 operation. The host has to be operating on a powerful server with stable network connections. At or above 99.5% is the acceptable uptime score; anything below 99% is not.

There are a variety of different ways of to review uptime info for hosts. A good choice can be found here. Uptime Robot will give you a wealth of information, from response times over the last 24 hours to a review of overall uptime over a given time period.

Server Pricing – Signup vs Renewal

Hosting deals are normally sold at a low cost on signup but charge a much higher price on renewal. Sadly this is just the industry norm, and unless you are willing to switch hosts on a regular basis, there is no way to avoid the higher renewal price. Always check the Terms of Services when looking at prices and make sure you do a thorough comparison of not only the signup cost but also renewal cost of all your options.

The other aspect in terms of money when looking for a host is the refund policy. It is important to know how your host handles customer refunds so that you don’t lose out too much when (not if) things go wrong. Some hosting companies charge extortionate cancelation fees even during their trial periods; avoid these companies at all cost.

Hosting Features

An oft-overlooked aspect of choosing a host are their available hosting features. The following in particular stand out: Cron for everyday operations, Auto Script Installer for easy web app installations and updates, .htaccess for security/page redirect purposes, Server Side Include for easier site maintenance, and FTP access for easy file transfer. Do not go with a host that does not have these.

E-mail Hosting

A personalized e-mail address rather than a generic e-mail address (@gmail.com etc) provides an air of professionalism in business. If you are hosting a website for the purpose of advertising a business, you should check to see if the hosting package comes with e-mail hosting. While there are other options (looking at you Google E-mail Apps) to add e-mail to your own domain, it removes hassle to have it from the get-go.

Site Backup

There will be times when your site crashes. It could be a server issue, a security breach or any web hosting backup. If the web host does site backups regularly then there should be nothing to worry about when these incidents occur, as your host should be able to restore in full your site. Always check what the policy on backups is before signing up.

Customer Support

Just as the server being operational should be 24/7, so should the customer support. Some prefer over-the-phone support, some prefer e-mail and others live chat. Whatever your preferred form of contact, what should be uniform across the board is instant access to help. As with everything else, read into this before signing up.

Different sites and business will have different requirements when it comes to web hosting. The underlying fact is that you can do all the research you want, but nothing beats trusted sources. Look at relevant respectable outlets for reviews and advice and you won’t go wrong when choosing your web hosting.

Comments

Please login or sign up to leave a comment

Join
MasterA

Thanks for this great guide anwebservices. It looks like you forgot too provide a link to Uptime Robot. It is important to review the uptime of the actual host's website. However, from personal experience, they will put their website on a very fast and solid server but when they provide you with your server quality is worst and slow. I have experienced this a few times where even though their website had amazing uptime and speed, the server I got was no where near as good. I agree that it is very important to have backups because a lot of people don't create them and you can lose a lot of money if you lose your data. Even if you do make your own backups, its always good to have extra backups made by your host. When I choose a host, I expect them to offer 24/7 support. I am not paying any money to wait 24 hours before I get a reply to a ticket. What if I have downtime? I am not waiting 24 hours to get it fixed. My advice is don't go for cheap hosts. I fell fell for this trap many times and I learnt my lesson. Yes, it increases your cost but you will earn it back when you get 100% uptime. Make sure you also look at reviews online and choose the host with the best review. I been on some hosts that have good reviews but my overall experience was bad. For example, I was on one host which had good support and decent uptime but their DDOS protection was close to zero and I suffered when someone DDOS attacked my website. Make sure you do your research carefully before choosing a host.



Are you sure you want to delete this post?

EliteWriter

That is a very good guide anwebservices. Well done.
I agree on all of the points you mentioned, and especially on the the word of caution about the fact that in many cases the signup fee is very low, but then when one has to renew it, the price is very high. It is very important to check this out before making a choice. Email hosting is another important factor too because as you said having a professional looking email address can be a benefit. Needless to say server uptime is critical for a reliable hosting service. You need a site that is up quickly, as otherwise visitors will rush away, and that is not something that you want.



Are you sure you want to delete this post?

Lynne

Yes I also found that very helpful too. I always assumed that the price is the price so I could have been tricked by an increased renewal fee. I never thought about this with hosting but I have heard some domain name companies do that too!



Are you sure you want to delete this post?

Cristian

What price would be considered a fair one for a hosting service that offers all the above features? I'm not talking about a big website that needs a big hosting plan, I'm talking about a new website, that doesn't have any traffic yet but it has potential and may get somewhat popular as it develops.

So anwebservices, what would be the perfect price and which hosting companies do you recommend?

I would hate for the servers crash right when I'm going somewhat "viral".



Are you sure you want to delete this post?

anwebservices

To review or recommend some of them i would personally first use them, then do so. But i didn't use too many in the past. As MasterA said cheapest ones mostly fail. One of them which was not so cheap but failed badly for me is Godaddy hosting. Not sure if they improved anything lately... Now for some years i am using "baby plan" on Hostgator for multiple websites and it's pretty reliable for me. BlueHost was good one to use too...
There is too many around now and it's hard to "find needle in haystack" How to choose right web hosting All i could really recommend for your further consideration is to look for well known hosting companies because they have a lot of customers, good revenues and they mostly investing further in new quality equipment and improving quality of their services constantly. But always keep in mind above tips to check them before buying. Simple as that....



Are you sure you want to delete this post?

Cristian

Thanks for the tips. I think I always had a Godaddy host laying around for a couple of years now, I always buy them on great sales, like 1 year of hosting for 12 bucks.

Anyways, also had Hostgator and in my opinion, they have really good services. Heard a lot of good stuff about BlueHost but if I ever plan to have a big website project in the coming years I'll go with Hostgator.



Are you sure you want to delete this post?

Lynne

I've heard mixed things about Hostgator Cristian and that is why I am hesitant to use them. Yes I know that if you dig deep enough you will most likely always find a rotten review or opinion about any company and service.... but yes I have heard too many negative things to want to try them out.

I was also recommended BlueHost by someone I really respect as a web master... but then Mike suggested StableHost and.. well it's Mike LOL, so I went with them. So far so good.



Are you sure you want to delete this post?

Lynne

Thanks for this guide Anwebservices. I recently had to change my hosting as you know and it is something I know absolutely nothing about so I had to rely on the guidance and suggestions given by everyone here in the community discussions and I am oh so grateful to be able to have you all to guide me through that. I get so nervous when I have to venture somewhere that is new territory like choosing hosting.

I love all the tips you have shared, but something else that you mentioned in one of the comments is that there are so many hosting companies to choose from, so many conflicting reviews online and so many conflicting opinions that it really makes it hard to as you say find a needle in a haystack.

Thankfully I really respect and trust the members here and I went with one of the recommendations! Thank you!



Are you sure you want to delete this post?

postcd

google domain name before purchase, contact them to test them how helpfull and willing to communicate they are. do not spend money you are not prepared to loose. always backup <--- golden rules



Are you sure you want to delete this post?