Choosing a great web hosting provider is essential to keep your website running smoothly. The wrong choice could result in a slow website or even worse – potential downtime. Both result in losing customers, which no business owner ever wants. With all of the technical aspects hosting companies offer, how do you know you’re picking the perfect one? We’ll review some tips so you can feel confident when you go to buy web hosting.
Company Reputation & Reviews
Shopping for a hosting provider starts with a few Google searches. Different companies have gained popularity over the years, so you’re best bet is to simply search for the most popular ones and read their reviews. You’ll find tons of articles for lots of companies, but be sure to see who is paid to write about them or any affiliate links. TrustPilot is a good website with honest rankings and reviews. You’ll want to look for how well they handle support or customer service issues, the length of time they’ve been around and how easy customers say it is to use their website. Make a short list of who you think sounds best depending on the reviews.
Storage: How big is your website going to be? Will be it be e-commerce? Do you plan to expand later on? It’s good to know what you’re preparing for in terms of storage when you start off. The average WordPress website is around 1gb of storage size. If you’ll be adding images, video or content often, it’s best to aim a little higher. Most hosting providers offer upgrade options, so take note on who will let you add storage easily or upgrade plans.
Bandwidth and Expected Traffic: This might be hard to estimate before you’re website is live, so you might want to compare a company’s different bandwidth options to start off with. See what different options they offer and go with what you think is best, depending on how popular your business is and how big your website will be. If you plan on being very successful right away or will be running e-commerce, unmetered (or unlimited) bandwidth is preferable.
Number of Websites & Domains: This can be ignored if you only have one of each, but if you have multiple companies, more than one domain or plan on expanding, this is something to consider. Some companies offer up to a few websites per plan, but some do not. Some are also easier to set up yourself, while other plans require more technical knowledge.
Customer Support: Will you need more help setting up your website? How far does your technical knowledge go? Some companies offer 24/7 customer support through chat or phone, but some charge extra for it. This is very important because things go wrong with websites all the time. Even if your website works great now, updates or bugs can happen which break things. If you don’t know what you’re doing, you’ll be relying on customer support to help you.
Extras (Such as Email, Domain name, SSL, Backups, Security, etc.): This is an important question when you are comparing providers. Do you plan to also have your domain names bought with the same company? Some companies will charge more for domains over time, while some are a flat rate. If you’ll need e-mail addresses, how many? Will you be able to set them up yourself or will you need to turn to customer service? Backups are also important to consider, and that depends on how often you plan to update or change your website. Not all hosting comes with automatic backups. I’d recommend a daily backup service if you have a large website or an e-commerce website. Security is very important these days. If you have a WordPress website, you can get away with a plugin like Wordfence. But if you have an e-commerce website, you might want extra security features that hosting providers offer, such as malware scans and malware removal tools.
Pricing: The last thing to factor in is pricing. It is not as important than you think because quality comes first. Paying extra for better customer service or the features you need is always worth it. Your website sets the stage for your online presence, so don’t skimp out on a cheap provider. You can expect an average cost of around $20/month with a good provider. We charge $17/month for our basic plan. It’s also important to see if SSL or other important features are included or an extra cost. Some providers charge an extra $99/year for SSL, which adds up over time.
Overall, there are a lot of things to consider when buying web hosting. Make a list and compare options to make sure you’re choosing the best company to suit your needs. Our plans start at only $17 and include backups, SSL and many other features. Contact us to learn more and good luck with your website journey!