The global web hosting services market is predicted to top $143.8 billion by the year 2020. How do you select a suitable web hosting service for your needs in the crowded marketplace with all the vendors promising expert support, unlimited resources, and 99% uptime?
We help you in this task by providing you the main factors and features you should look for.
Understand the jargon and figure out what hosting vendors are saying to select the best fitting package for your requirements.
Area of Specialty
Some companies offer excellent shared plans that are great for individuals and solopreneurs. But they may not have ideal packages for growing companies. Other vendors may specialize in enterprise plans but may not offer anything for people with basic needs.
Therefore, do research on the provider’s area of specialty and select a service that understands your specific needs. Read online reviews and feedback to learn about a vendor’s strengths and drawbacks.
You should be easily able to use the interface and control panel to do basic tasks such as installing WordPress and setting up email and FTP accounts, even without technical skills.
Does the vendor offer Plesk or cPanel to help you make modifications and updates easily? Or, is the interface clunky and hard to use? The interface and control panel should be easy to understand and use, otherwise it can become an ongoing issue.
First, understand the needs of your website. If you wish to host videos or rich content, or an e-commerce website, you shouldn’t settle for a cheap package as this service will not be able to offer you the disk space, processing power, and RAM for your needs. As a result, you may be affected by load issues and downtime.
If your company uses cloud customer support, you don’t have to worry about bandwidth for this web portal as it will be hosted elsewhere by the SaaS vendor. Read useful guides on what is help desk software to learn the advantages of cloud customer support.
Check your shortlist of web hosting services and contact each one of them to learn if they charge additionally for backups, support, extra domains etc. Get all the essential details clarified before you make the final selection.
Email is still important for marketing as it fetches good ROI. Therefore, the vendor should offer effective spam solutions to help you avoid this spam issues. Plus, find out about the general email features and tools they offer to gauge if they are useful for your business.
Go online and look for useful feedback from the vendor’s customers. You can use social media for this purpose as you simply need to ask a query about a vendor and you will most likely get lots of answers.
Find out answers to important considerations such as support access, average time they take to reply to a query, their action plan to resolve website issues, and others.
You also need to do research on the type of servers and hardware used by the vendor. Do they utilize advanced machines or do they cobble together equipment from bits and pieces? This is important as hardware has a big impact on your site and their servers.
Look for add-ons and features that distinguish the vendor from the crowd. These could be domain privacy, data backups, energy-saving procedures, multiple secure data centers, and others. If you think that one or more of these add-ons are useful to you, consider it a plus point for that particular provider.
Tech and Customer Support
It is essential that your site does not face any downtime which could prove costly for your business. If your site does go down, can the vendor provide prompt support to help it get back up again quickly?
Do they use multiple channels such as toll-free phone, chat, email etc. to provide tech support? Is the support function outsourced or do they use an in-house team? Select a web host that places emphasis on providing fast and efficient tech and customer support.
The vendor should be capable of scaling their capabilities to meet your company’s future growth and demands. Do they offer dedicated server or VPS plans that can handle the extra volume? Can you upgrade your package easily?
This is important as it can take a lot of effort and time to switch to another provider in the future if the current one is not capable of scaling.
Do not jump on a vendor simply because they offer discounts to make their package cheap. Such a provider may not be able to offer quality hardware or in-house support.
Therefore, avoid penny pinching and think about the overall package and features offered by the vendor. Select a provider that offers you the best and most suitable features even if it costs a bit more.
Keep track of the latest web hosting trends to enhance your knowledge about this industry.
Read the expert reviews in a computer software rating site to learn about the top features and benefits offered by leading web hosting services. If you have any other consideration to select a web hosting service, please share the details with us in the comments section.