If you’re a small business owner, then you need to be mindful of your marketing tactics. One thing you definitely need in order to grow your business is a good website, and you’ll need a solid web hosting plan in order to make the right impression on your customers. On the other hand, if you choose an unreliable web hosting company when building a website, you will suffer the following consequences:
- Frequent downtimes. It was reported that 40 minutes downtime cost Amazon $5 million in revenue. Similarly, Google’s internet dropped by 40% costing the giant search engine close around £330,000 when their homepage went down for 5 minutes.
- You lose your reputation. If your website is unreliable, people will lose trust in you and your company will lose reputation.
- You will suffer the challenges of having to migrate your website to another web hosting company, an often difficult process.
As you can see, it’s important to choose the right web hosting company from the onset of your website launch. Unfortunately, despite the importance of choosing a reliable web host, many website owners don’t commit their time to researching a good company. When you want to choose a hosting provider, it’s best to start with a web hosting reviews website.
There are many review websites with good information. For example, HostCalc.com has a lot of reviews on web hosting companies and their selections of plans from which to choose. Using this example, we can consider the ingredients that go into a quality web hosting review. Once you understand the differences between hosting providers and plans, you can make an informed decision to suit your individual needs. Try these tips to get started:
Evaluate Your Web Hosting Needs
Before you get into reading web hosting reviews in search of a reliable company, you need to evaluate your web hosting needs. This involves understanding the available web hosting options on the market.
Typically, there are different web hosting types available such as shared hosting, VPS hosting, dedicated server hosting, managed hosting, cloud web hosting, and colocation. You’re going to want to align your business goals with your technical requirements. So, let’s take a look at the four popular web hosting options which are:
Shared Web Hosting
Shared hosting is where multiple websites are hosted on the same server. In this case, all domains share server resources including the CPU and many others. This type of web hosting is suitable for beginners or websites that do not receive a large amount of traffic.
Shared hosting plans are inexpensive but sometimes are prone to frequent downtimes because of the sharing of resources among multiple websites.
VPS (Virtual Private Server) Hosting
VPS hosting is a half-shared and half-dedicated type of web hosting.
Perhaps you’re lost here but what this simply means is that the web hosting option mimics the two types in that different websites are hosted within their own space but share a physical server with other websites. This web hosting option is ideal for users who need more control over the server but cannot buy a dedicated server.
Dedicated Server Hosting
Dedicated server hosting lets website owners have complete control over their servers. There is no sharing of resources as you would find with a shared hosting account. As the website owner, you can set your website security measures and install your operating system.
This hosting option is costly though and is ideal for a website with huge traffic. It also requires a high level of technical expertise to install software and manage the server as well.
Managed Web Hosting
With managed hosting, the hosting company takes care of hardware and software setup as well as maintenance and configuration among other technical and management services.
As you can see, there are different web hosting options to choose from that you can get confused about which one to pick. However, your choice of web hosting should be determined by the resources your website needs, the type of website you run, your budget, and anticipated traffic.
In summary, shared hosting is a low-cost web hosting option ideal for websites with low traffic. VPS hosting is ideal for websites with much traffic that shared hosting cannot handle. It’s much like an improved version of shared hosting.
Managed hosting is ideal for users with little or no technical expertise. Dedicated server hosting on the other hand is ideal for large websites with huge amounts of traffic. It’s suitable for users who want full control over their servers. That said, here is what to look for in a web hosting review.
While every hosting provider will have downtimes from time to time, it’s important to consider the reliability of service before investing your money on it. Outages are inevitable especially when it comes to the online world; however, your web hosting provider should be able to fix them fast.
Take a look at the reliability of the hosting company carefully to see how much downtime they have had for at least three to four months in the past. Ideally, you should consider a web hosting provider that promises at least 99% uptime. As seen above, a few minute’s downtimes could cost your website traffic and your business could lose reputation and revenue as well.
When reading web hosting reviews, take a look at what other website owners are saying about the customer support of your web host of choice. When your website goes down, your only hope is the customer support team. The last thing you want to see is struggling to reach the customer support of your chosen web host.
Website crashes are inevitable especially if your website receives a spike in traffic. So you want to make sure you can get customer service at all times. Ideally, you should choose a web hosting provider that offers 24/7 customer support.
Besides, the web host should provide many ways you can get in touch with them such as email, phone, live chat, etc. If you see too many complaints when it comes to customer support avoid that company.
Website Migration Support
Undeniably, every website owner understands the need to choose the right web hosting provider from the onset of website launch but unfortunately, not everyone takes the time to choose a reliable provider. All hope is not lost though. If you choose an unreliable web hosting company, you can always migrate your website to another provider.
However, not all web hosting companies offer website migration support. That makes it difficult for you to switch to another provider in case you aren’t satisfied with your current one. So, when reading web hosting reviews, see what people are saying about their migration process.
Next Step: Start Reading Web Hosting Reviews
Now that you understand a bit more about how to evaluate your needs, it’s time to read reviews and make a decision. Start with a website like Host Calc. They have well-thought, and fair reviews of the web hosting plans that they list. You will be able to explore reviews on many of the top web hosting companies around. Read the reviews on the types of plans that suit your needs from among these companies. As you read each review, click through to each website to get more information. Then, choose a plan and get started. If you don’t find what you need on that website, there are plenty of other web hosting review websites with good information. The most important step is to just get started. Good luck!