Most companies understand the value of creating quality web content and they are finally beginning to understand the importance of developing a website that is responsive, i.e. adapt to different digital media, computer, phone and Tablet.
However, the essential process of selecting a reliable web host is still often overlooked. When business owners take the time to choose a reliable web host, they ensure that their website remains accessible and secure at all times.
Randomly choosing a web host, based on package price alone, can produce disastrous results.
Choosing the wrong web host
A reliable and reputable web host will make regular backups of your data to a secure, remote server just in case there is a security breach and you lose your data.
When your website is down, it’s like you’re closing up shop. Your customers cannot enter your store to shop and you lose money. Websites are designed to allow customers to shop around the clock. This does not happen if your website is inaccessible. In August 2013, Amazon lost €50,000 per minute when the website was unavailable for more than 30 minutes.
Security breaches and loss of revenue are just the beginning of your problems. Websites that regularly experience long periods of downtime often see their rankings in search results plummet. If your website is down, the content you have developed cannot be viewed and indexed by search engines.
Here are 10 tips that will help businesses choose the right web host and avoid mistakes that can create big problems later.
1. Know the type of web hosting you need
Understanding your business needs can help you narrow down your web hosting options. If you intend to build a website that includes a vblog, 24-hour streaming, and the ability for visitors to register and upload their own videos, your website would need more features. than someone who uses their site for a simple virtual CV. Websites that receive a lot of daily traffic probably won’t perform well on a shared server because these servers are designed to accommodate a large number of small websites that have limited demands.
2. Choose the right hosting package
Many small businesses are turning to shared hosting as a way to save money, but with a lower price often comes a greater risk of slow site response times. Customers avoid slow websites. An option like a Virtual Private Server (VPS) is slightly more expensive, but it provides faster and better web performance and offers a better customer experience.
3. Get the right amount of bandwidth
Although most new websites don’t use a lot of bandwidth, it’s important to leave room for growth. Make sure the web hosting company you choose doesn’t throttle your bandwidth and then charges you extra if you need to revise your plan later.
4. Read Web Hosting Reviews
Researching a web hosting company through third-party reviews is great for uncovering recurring issues or persistent complaints from current or past users. Pay attention to how the company responds to complaints, if any. This will give you an idea of how the company deals with dissatisfied customers.
5. Don’t get stuck on price
When you’re a new website owner on a budget, choosing the web hosting provider with the lowest price can be very tempting. As cliché as it sounds, remember: you always get what you pay for. The lower price could result in slow servers, poor customer service, constant downtime, and association with thousands of non-professional websites with sometimes dubious reputations.
6. Know the data backup and restoration plan
You should know if the host you choose has a backup plan to help you recover lost data the day it happens (because yes, chances are it will happen to you at least once). Ask them what the backup plan is. If you’re not comfortable with the answer, you know what to do.
7. Test customer support
When researching web hosting companies, always look for a way to contact customer service. You need to be able to quickly and easily via email, online chat, or phone 24/7. Be sure to test each feature before purchasing their services to see if they meet your business needs.
Don’t just skim through them; really read them! Most people agree to the Terms of Service without bothering to read exactly what they are signing. We have all done it. Stop doing it. The Terms of Service usually include the refund policy, which may be good to know for later.
9. Ask about security features
Make sure your host can provide you with Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) protocol to protect your customers’ personal information. This is an essential feature to provide customers with safe transactions and should be provided by the web hosting company.
10. Avoid the new that can’t handle growth
Often, new businesses offer low prices in hopes of catching up with a large influx of customers. However, most new hosting companies aren’t equipped to successfully handle that many customers at once. It’s best to stick with a more established company that can accommodate growth without compromising the experience of its customers.
When web hosting companies grow too fast and they don’t have the resources to keep up with it, it creates problems for business owners like downtime, higher page loads slow, lost revenue and negative effects on search engine rankings.