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Published: 09th July 2012
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What Should You Look for In a Host?
What should you look for in a hosting company? What sets one option apart from another in terms of value to you, the client? While the needs of each individual or company will vary slightly, there are quite a few common concerns found across the board. You need to find a company that offers the most affordable solution possible, of course. However, you do not want to sacrifice performance, uptime or customer support for affordability. You need to ensure that the host you choose supports the operating system you use (Windows and Linux, typically), and you also need to ensure that the host offers the features that you need. For instance, you might want a host that provides you with unlimited subdomains, or you might require an unlimited number of email addresses. Choosing the right host should be based on the features provided, but you should not overpay for features that you do not need. For instance, if a host offers unlimited disk space for a premium price, but your website does not require an enormous amount of space (nor will it in the future), then there is no reason to pay for this extra.
Ensure You Get the Service You Deserve
Another essential ingredient of developing your web presence is the level of customer support provided by the host you choose. Ideally, you want the best possible support. The hosting company you choose should offer several ways to contact them when you need support - a toll-free telephone number, email and web chat features are the industry standards here. Without the right amount of support, you will find that you have to go it alone, which is not an option for all users. If you have a decent amount of skill working with websites, this might be a palatable option, but it is certainly not for everyone.
Ensuring Uptime and Reliability
Your choice of web host is an investment. Therefore, you need to make sure that you get the best possible return on that investment. While the tools and features provided by the host are part of this return, the uptime and reliability offered are also a huge concern. When your website is down, whether due to server problems, network problems or some other cause, you are losing revenue because your customers cannot reach your site. Therefore, you need to ensure that your web host offers the utmost in terms of uptime and reliable service. The industry standard here is 99.9% uptime, but you will find hosts that offer 99.99% and 100% uptime guarantees.
Dedicated, Shared or Cloud Hosting?
If you have spent any time at all looking into hosting services, you know that there are many different varieties out there. Shared hosting is usually the most affordable, though this is not usually the right choice for larger businesses. Dedicated hosting gives you all the resources in a server, but usually comes at a premium. Cloud hosting is a newer option available, which comes in somewhere between shared and dedicated in terms of pricing. You can also choose virtual private hosting and other options. You need to find the host that offers the right type of hosting for your needs.
Quality Hosting Need Not Cost a Fortune
Once upon a time, finding a good web host meant that you had to spend a small fortune. Today, that is no longer true. You will find several ways in which you can save money, from shared hosting plans to budget hosts. What are your options to help you save money? How can you shave down the costs of developing your web presence? Below, you'll find a few of the best options to help you cut the costs of getting online.
Free Domain Name Registration
The usual means of getting a website involves you paying to have your domain name registered, on top of the fees for the hosting plan that you choose. The fees for your domain name can range considerably, depending on the extension you chose (.com,.org,.net,.us, etc.). However, using a host that gives you free domain name registration can help you save a considerable amount of money. You will even find some hosts that give you a free domain for life.
Shared Over Dedicated Hosting
The two primary options in hosting are shared and dedicated hosting packages. A dedicated plan gives you all of the resources on a particular server, meaning that your website should be more responsive and more reliable. However, shared hosting plans should not be overlooked. In these instances, you share space on a server with other websites. In the past, this meant slower response times, but thanks to the advent of things like clustered hosting and practices like not overselling server space, shared hosting can be quite good. You will find that this means you are able to save a dramatic amount of money, without sacrificing website performance.
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