It can be difficult to get past all the hype and information about web hosting companies when you’re trying to pick one for your business. All these companies are vying for your attention, so they offer a plethora of features and promises that may or may not be accurate. You need to cut through that hyperbole and make an educated decision about the web host that can meet your needs. This guide will help you do that.
- Support Services
Tech support is a huge deal for your business website. If your website goes offline, you should be able to contact support and talk to a real person over the phone. They should be able to tell you what’s happening and inform you of what to do to get your site back online. Find out if they offer live assistance, if they outsource or have in-house support, if they have support 24/7/365, if they offer chat, if you can email, and if their phone number is toll-free.
- Tech Specs
How are you planning to setup your website? Will you need e-commerce solutions, a blog, and/or video and rich content solutions? If so, the cheaper web hosting companies aren’t likely to have the proper setup for your needs. You will require site hosting that has plenty of RAM, disk space, and processing capabilities to drive your site. Once you see how much “cheaper” web hosts charge for support, backup, additional domains, and other features that some website hosts include with their packages, it’s likely to cost you more for lesser resources.
Finding out what kind of hardware a site hosting company uses may take some research. You might even have to make a phone call or send an email to them to get answers. You need to know what types of machines they use for their servers and components. Their hardware will affect the performance of their servers, which will also affect your website performance.
How much is web hosting? That’s the first thing everyone wants to know before they even look at the features and packages. The cost of web hosting shouldn’t be the only factor that drives your choice in providers. You can’t expect a company that charges $1.99 month for hosting to have the power and performance you need for your business site.
- Expertise and Specialties
Some website hosting providers offer specialty features like enterprise solutions for growing businesses. If you’re business is growing, that’s great, but if not, you don’t need to spend more money for features you may never need. Look at a hosting company that can cater to your specific needs.
Most site hosing companies provide you with more than one email address for your website. Look at the email features they offer to make sure you don’t encounter issues with spam or security issues. Businesses still need and use email, so don’t think it’s dead yet.
How good is the web hosting provider’s reputation? Customers will provide ratings and reviews to help you find out about their level of customer service and more. You can Google the company or check them out of Twitter or Facebook to see what their customers are saying about them. You need to know if they are easy to contact, if they have more than one contact option, if they respond to support tickets quickly, and if they are knowledgeable simply be reading reviews.
- Control Panel
The control panel for your site hosting account should be a user-friendly interface. You shouldn’t have to contact tech support to help you use FTP, email, or install WordPress. If they have Plesk or cPanel, updates and site modifications are easier and user-friendly.
- Features & Add-Ons
Does the website host offer any special add-ons or features with the package you want? How is one site host different from the rest? What incentives do they have that makes them more appealing to you? Offerings like multiple data centers, regular data backups, domain privacy, or other additional add-ons or features as part of a package deal can make it too good to pass up. Just make sure the one you choose has the power and performance your site needs.
- Scalability for Growth
Does your company need a website host that can grow with you? Scalability is something to consider if you are looking for a provider that will match your needs for future growth. For instance, if you need to upgrade to a dedicated server or VPS, do they offer that option?
Use this information to help you make an informed decision about the web hosting company that can meet your business’ website needs.