Choosing the right web host
What are some of the most important things you should look out for when choosing a new web host?
Choosing the right web host can be a very challenging task. Nobody denies that the quality of your web hosting can break your business if the website is the main source to generate new business. Even your personal homepage depends on the quality of your web host. Nobody wants to loose that important email. Plan for the future growth of your website and Internet needs before deciding on a certain web hosting provider.
There are so many web hosts out there to choose from. As a customer you try to find reviews about web hosting companies, but soon you realize that many of the web hosting directories, that provide ratings are not really delivering what they promise. Web hosts can pay for the listing. Negative reviews and ratings from other customers never make it to the website – only positive feedback is allowed. How can you trust, that the host is really as good as described?
Word of mouth recommendation from friends or family can be a very good way to find a good web host for your website. Ask around and check out the results. It might be very well possible that your search is over in no time and that you can settle for this host.
Another approach of finding a good web host, is doing thorough research on the Internet. Nowadays there are online communities for every purpose – including web hosting. Use your favorite search engine to find at least 2 or 3 online communities (forum) about web hosting. Before you start posting your questions right away, start reading through the archives. Most of your questions have probably been asked in the past and you can follow those threads to gather information. Check for complaints about web hosts. Once you have a couple of recommendations, go, and check out the web hosts website. Make sure that the hosting plans and features offered will meet your requirements before moving on to the next level of research.
Next you will need to look at the offered features and pricing. Not every host is a good choice for everyone. Hosting seems to become a little more targeted nowadays. Web hosts start specializing which results in better service results for these targeted groups – not necessarily everyone else. It really depends on your needs and requirements.
Please visit our customer checklist for more details on this part of your research.
What about all those free web hosting packages out there? Are they an option at all? I personally do not like ’em. The annoying pop-up advertisements are a big pain. In my honest opinion, I have to say that you will get what you pay for.
Buyer beware! Another aspect to keep in mind – try to avoid paying for features that will not need. Anything that goes beyond a standard package will cost money. It costs money to the web host and guess who he will try to get the money back from?! You. Compare the web hosts you have selected. Don’t rush a decision when not being sure.
Some good places to start your research on the Internet are forums like Web Hosting Talk or Sitepoint. Just be aware that you should treat every recommendation with some caution – unless you know the person who responded. Recommendations do not replace your own research. You will also see lots of host bashing. People who eventually had a bad experience with a specific web host complain in public – sometimes justified, sometimes not justified. It could also be a competitor who is trying to get new business by making fake recommendations under a different user id other than his/her own. Honesty is not always present in this industry.