How to choose your website hosting provider
Choosing a hosting provider for your website is one of the most important decisions you can make
You’ve built the new website, gone through all phases regarding design selection, content gathering, wrestling with the programmers to give you the final result: your beautiful, functional new website. Just when you’ve thought it’s time for you to relax, you hit the wall. Now that your website is completed, it’s time to choose a hosting provider for your website.
What’s hosting anyway? Let me put it this way. Imagine yourself traveling to a foreign country for the first time. You want to get the best host ever, right? The one who will provide solid accommodation, show you around, help if needed.
The same rule applies to your website. You need a good host to take care of it. You don’t want any sudden breakdowns in the middle of presenting your website to potential clients. For this and many other reasons, it is crucial to pick the best hosting provider you can get on the market.
As with any other important choices you make, you should think carefully. You don’t want to fall in love and only after some time realize you’ve made a mistake.
Let’s go through the most significant features and see what’s in it for you.
Fall in love with your hosting company
Before choosing the hosting provider, you should do extensive research and check if the hosting company is offering exactly what your website needs. Of a wide variety of features, pay special attention to the following ones:
First of all, don’t panic if you don’t understand most or any of the terms above.
Here comes the explanation of each feature in a language you can understand and digest.
Make regular backups of your website a priority
You can invest many months and lots of money in building your website. But if you don’t create regular backups, the whole website, energy, money and efforts can vanish in a few seconds. One of the most important things is to secure backups of your website data.
The ideal hosting company is the one that offers automatic and regular website backups. This is the best option you can get. It will reduce your time and stress regarding creating regular backups and ensure your website safety if anything goes wrong. In simple words, if by any chance your website gets infected and a virus “eats” the content on your website, no worries. You can easily restore the lost content from the previously created backups.
Customer/tech support: Knights of the digital world
There are many bad scenarios you can experience with your website. What would you do if your website breaks? Panic, sit and cry? Of course not, but only if you’ve chosen a good hosting provider with 24/7 available tech support. Serious hosting companies provide customer/tech support via different channels like emails, chats messenger, live chats. Usually, they respond in fast turnaround time and solve the problems in just a few hours.
Storage: Not as dull as it sounds
Storage is a space where your website data, files, media are placed. Always agree on more space/storage than your website actually needs. For small websites, up to 2 GB of storage is enough, for medium ones up to 5 GB. It’s simple logic. It’s the size of your websites that will decide the storage size.
Bandwidth: Upload and download without a headache
Bandwidth is the amount of data related to all uploads and downloads your hosting provider will tolerate on a monthly basis. Many hosting providers propose unlimited bandwidth. But, there’s a catch. If they don’t manage this unlimited option well, this may affect your website traffic speed and slow it down.
In the opposite case, if your hosting provider allows only limited bandwidth, the moment you break the limit, you will either have to pay for more megabytes (MB) or your provider will forbid more viewers. So, choose the bandwidth package wisely and agree on all details and possible outcomes.
Check the uptime of your hosting provider
Most of the hosting provider companies promise 99,99% uptime. Which means your website will be in use or online 99,99% per day. On the other hand, it will be downtime or offline only 1.44 minutes on a daily basis. To increase the visibility and ranking of your website, make sure your hosting company takes care of the uptime.
How important is the server location?
Firstly, you have the option to host your website as near as possible to your website visitors. This type of hosting is called onshore hosting and people opt for it when they want their servers to be close to them and when they want the price of hosting services and maintenance to be lower.
However, nowadays more and more people choose offshore hosting providers, such as AbeloHost. Hosting your website in a far-off location comes with the benefits of greater reliability, anonymity and security. This type of hosting also provides a greater degree of freedom, since the country in which you’d host your website typically has more liberal regulations. This is why most streaming websites are hosted in offshore locations like The Netherlands, Russia or Iceland.
Still, keep in mind that you can’t host adult content with most hosting providers, so make sure to pick an adult hosting service if you plan to go down that line.
RAM: Keep your memory up
Another substantial feature you should study is RAM. For example, if your website runs several processes at once, they will be kept in RAM. The more processes your site runs, the more RAM it needs. The amount of RAM depends on the website size. In case your website lacks RAM, your visitors will get error messages and will not be able to visit your website. Of course, you don’t want this to happen so negotiate smart conditions for your RAM with the hosting provider.
Email features: They still matter
Emails are one of the essential features of your business. When it comes to emails linked to your website, one of the most tiresome problems you may encounter are spam and bouncing messages. Don’t forget to ask your hosting company if they provide spam solutions.
Price: Don’t make it a priority
Many website owners base their decision on a website hosting provider depending on the price. Jumping on the least expensive hosting provider sounds like a good deal. In reality, cheap offers lead to less crucial features and less security of your website. Also, many hosting providers render free hosting which is only a disguise for selling other things, usually marketing ones. In a nutshell, always compare the price and the features provided and then pick the hosting provider. After all, it’s quality that matters.
To summarize all previously noted, before deciding a website hosting provider:
Do extensive research
Compare pricing and features
Let the quality win
Study the company’s User Agreement
Once you make the decision, there is turning back. You can always change your hosting provider. Still, make sure your first choice is the best one.