Every online business needs a platform to sell their product or service. The best way to do it isn’t through social media channels, although some might think of this first, but through your very own website.
Web hosting has never been more important, and the need to explain how to choose the right provider is even more important. Web hosting should be something that you invest a lot of time in, and we are going to help you decide how to choose the right provider for your needs.
With all that said, let’s get started.
Important Note Before We Begin
The emphasis on security should be your brand’s number one focus when determining who to do business with. As a matter of fact, in the past three years, there have been more than 45,000 high-profile websites hacked. Some of the more notable ones include Blue Cross, Home Depot, and even Target.
With all that said, a reputable provider that is well known for offering a solid security plan should always be at the front of it. The provider not only should have solid security but should be able to take extra measures if a hack occurs. During a hacker attack, not only are you losing money due to the downtime of your website, but you also lose key data; always have this in mind.
So now, let’s continue on with how to choose a web hosting provider.
1. Determine Your Needs
The biggest starting point is to determine the needs of your online business first, before making the decision.
You can easily answer this question if you take into account the type of content on your website. If you plan on including lots of video content where the user can also upload his own videos (YouTube is a clear example of this), then you need a web hosting plan that gives you a lot of bandwidth and storage.
If your website will be your very own blog, then you don’t need the same amount of storage and bandwidth.
2. Determine the Type of Hosting
There are many types of hosting plans and each one comes with their own set of pros and cons. If you’re planning on running a blog, then a simple shared hosting package should do the trick.
Shared hosting refers to a hosting plan where you and multiple other websites are sharing the hosting. This naturally comes at a lower price, but you’re also limited to certain features. This, naturally, makes your website much slower than other plans, and we all know that slow websites make visitors leave. Your website will only be slow if you experience a lot of traffic, and if so, then it’s best to move onto other plans such as a virtual private server.
3. Read Reviews
You should always read reviews before making any final decision on the internet.
This is a trend that is slowly becoming a norm in the online world. Google has even modified its own algorithms and search results to give you reviews whenever searching for a particular business. Reviews are usually met with some form of grading, usually stars. A 5-star web hosting provider means that every person has given the highest possible rating to the provider. And this is generally a good place to start.
Also, reviews can tell you the good and the bad in regards to the business. A bad review will uncover potential issues to be aware of, and that makes the decision easier to make, according to experts at medianovas.com.
4. Bandwidth Is Important
We mentioned bandwidth earlier, and we will dedicate a whole section on it alone.
Bandwidth is very important because it gives you a rough estimate as to how much traffic your website can take. A top-tier web hosting plan gives you unlimited bandwidth, meaning the website will never crash if too much traffic occurs.
Naturally, the more bandwidth the higher the cost for the hosting plan. If your website experiences more traffic than your bandwidth allows, your provider will upgrade your plan in mere seconds, but you will be asked to pay for it. This is also a very important feature as you won’t experience any downtime.
5. Disregard the Price
Trust us when we say this, it’s very tempting to go with the provider that offers you the cheapest prices. But before you do that, remember those 45,000 high-profile websites that were hacked the past three years.
The cheapest price doesn’t usually mean the best service. You might be offered a very, very, low price for your hosting plan, but chances are you will experience eighter slow servers, frequent downtimes, poor security, no backup plan, terrible customer support… And while we’re on it, let’s discuss a little bit about customer service.
6. Do They Provide Good Customer Support?
Trust us on this one, a hosting provider with good customer support will save you a lot of time at the begging. If you’re a person that has no clue about websites and how they work, then always go for the provider with top-tier customer support.
A provider that offers you 24/7 customer support through eighter chat, email, and even phone is a good place to start. You can even run some tests and see how they respond to your questions. But without question, always make sure that they can meet your needs.
7. Any Backup Plan?
A provider without a backup plan should never be in the conversation. Backup refers to a copy made of your website in the case of an emergency.
If that emergency does occur, and you lose all of your website data, your providers should have a backup ready to go online. Whenever making the decision, a backup plan along with security takes center stage. As a matter of fact, all of the previously mentioned points take center stage, and every single one of these should be ticked-off before making the decision.
Don’t hesitate to ask questions or talk to their personnel before going along with a particular provider. Although there are some huge names in the industry that their reputation speaks for themselves, asking questions has never hurt anyone.