Choosing a web host for your blog or site can be tough. Most of the website hosting companies promise to provide 99% uptime, unlimited resources, 24-7 support, unlimited disk space, unlimited bandwidth, and email. In this situation, we get confused on how to choose a web hosting service.
So, make sure you complete your homework before selecting a website hosting company and decide the package that best suits your need because there are several key factors to consider when choosing a web host.
Based on the below factors, here are the top 3 recommended web hosts
Before we see the things to consider when choosing a web host the purpose of doing a web hosting is very important.
Purpose of Web Hosting
Whether you’re choosing to host for an existing website, or looking to start from scratch, what you intend to use the site for will influence your hosting choice.
For example, do you plan to make money from your website, or is it something you’re setting up for fun?
If the website is personal, free hosting will usually serve your needs. Free hosting is usually supported by advertising, so if you’re running a business you should consider paid hosting. Most paid hosting companies also offer services that are specifically designed for people who are using their site for business.
Small businesses might want to consider shared hosting or standard paid hosting.
With domain hosting, you only pay for the domain name for your website and can host it anywhere you like. This might be suitable if your business has a low budget and you already have, or are planning to create, a site using WordPress, Tumblr or similar. Shared hosting entails sharing server space and bandwidth with another organization. It’s similar to having your own IT department, and it gives you greater control over your web hosting. With shared hosting, you can usually get higher bandwidth speeds for a lower price than if you hosted the server yourself.
The most common hosting option for websites is standard paid shared hosting. Hosting is usually charged monthly or annually, and you pay for a certain amount of space. Paid hosting comes with a wealth of choices and options so you need to think carefully about which services will be helpful before committing to a certain package.
Must Have Features/Factors to Consider When Choosing a Web hosting Provider
1. Website Builder
Your Web host should provide the tools to help you create a great website, whether you’re an HTML guru or a total beginner.
Before you settle on a host, check to ensure that the host features an integrated website builder. These days, most services include a builder that can help you create a basic Web page or a complex site with numerous pages.
Modern website builders offer templates so you can create a polished, professional-looking website for your business without the need to hire a professional designer. And they feature drag-and-drop functionality so you can easily tweak your site to better reflect your brand.
2. Control panel
You’re busy running your business, so don’t waste time hunting for options in a confusing Web interface. Great Web hosts feature an integrated control panel that serves up the most important administrative options in a single location.
A good control panel lets you control every aspect of your website, and easily locate features such as search engine optimization tools and logs. Features should be grouped into related categories so you can find what you need when you need it.
Bear in mind, however, that even the most popular graphical control panels can seem overwhelming and difficult to navigate for beginners.
3. Site statistics
Your Web host should feature on-demand statistical tools so you can keep tabs on your site’s current status and performance.
Most Web hosting services can offer up stats, but some require you to pay extra before you gain access to certain information, such as how much traffic your website is generating. The best services provide that data for free, as well as other information, including how much disk space you’ve used, how many subdomains you have, how many SQL databases you’ve set up and more.
Before you pick a host, make sure it provides the information you need at a glance.
4. Shopping carts
If you sell your product on the Web, make sure your Web host offers capable e-commerce tools.
Some hosts offer only a single integrated shopping cart application, while others allow you to use third-party shopping cart programs such as CubeCart, ZenCart, and PayPal. It’s usually better to have more options so you can pick the one that’s best suited for your business.
Most hosts allow you to set up an online shopping cart for your business’s website, but some make you pay extra for the feature. Others set a cap on the number of items that can be placed in your inventory; if you want to expand, you’ll have to pay more.
5. Advertising credits
Free advertising credits are a great perk now offered by most major Web hosting services. Credits help you get the word out about your business without devising a separate advertising budget.
By redeeming your advertising credits, you can place ads for your site on popular search engines such as Google and Yahoo. Some hosts provide credits on a recurring basis while others offer them only as an incentive for signing up.
The best Web hosts offer additional marketing tools, such as the option to create a mailing list to promote your site. Some hosts will also submit your site to search engines for free to boost its visibility.
6. Unlimited mailboxes
Owning a Web domain means you can create professional email addresses that include the name of your business. But some Web hosts limit the number of email addresses you can create.
The best hosting services allow you to create unlimited mailboxes. The feature is especially important if every one of your employees has an individual email address, or if you would like to create separate addresses for different types of customer inquiries.
Some Web hosts also offer built-in email tools, like spam filters and an auto-response feature that can reply to emails when you’re away.
7. 1-click app installs
The best Web hosts allow you to install Web apps with a single click. The feature makes it easy and convenient to install a blog, CMS portal or other useful application on your site with minimal effort.
That could come in handy, particularly if your coding skills are lacking.
Some Web hosts even feature a dynamically updated script library to help you find the best apps on the Web without leaving your site’s control panel.
8. Tech support (24/7)
When technical difficulties arise, you’ll need backup. Great Web hosting providers offer round-the-clock tech support so you can get your business back on track quickly if someone goes wrong.
Check to see if your prospective Web host has reps available 24 hours a day, seven days a week to assist you. Speedy email support is also a plus.
The best platforms also offer educational tools like video tutorials to help you get started if you’re new to the service and user forums where you can seek help for specific problems once your website is up and running.
This is the aspect most of us will look at first when choosing a hosting provider; however, it shouldn’t be the deciding factor. When you see price differences it’s helpful to remember the old maxim that we get what we pay for. Jumping on the cheapest offer you see isn’t necessarily the best idea, especially if you rely on your site to make money.
Things like non-outsourced support and quality hardware cost money, and a hosting company that charges $1.99 per month likely won’t offer these features. Take a closer look at the features that each host provides, and THEN compare prices.
10. Tech Specs / Limitations
Take a good, honest look at your site and figure out what you want it to do. If you’re hoping to host a blog, an e-commerce site, rich content, and videos, then you shouldn’t go with the cheapest hosting package you can find. A cheap hosting plan probably won’t have the RAM, processing power, and disk space to serve all these needs, and you’ll spend more time dealing with downtime or load issues than you would like.
Look to see what you are getting with the cheap host and what features are included in the cost. Do they charge for additional domains, support, backups, etc.. Call them. Ask questions. Tell them what you envision your site’s needs to be. Just don’t take it for granted that they take your site as seriously as you do.
11. Features / Add-Ons
This area of consideration comes down to the following question – What makes this hosting company special? What extra incentive do they provide to make hosting your site with them just a touch more attractive? Whether it’s multiple data centers, energy-saving practices, or additional features such as regular data backups or free domain privacy, hosting companies often offer more than just servers. If you see one that offers something you need or finds important, that can be a good indicator that you should look into using that company.
You might have to do a bit of reading (or question-asking) to get to the bottom of this one. What kind of machines does your hosting company use? Are they top-of-the-line, out-of-the-box new machines, or are they cobbled together from what might be spare parts and chicken wire?
If the hosting company doesn’t say what kind of servers they use, you’ll want to ask, since hardware can affect the performance of both their servers and your site.
13. Customer Reviews / Satisfaction / Reputation
This is one of those factors that you’ll have to get a little creative to get the real story on. Do a Google Blog search for a particular hosting company, or look them up on Twitter – whatever you have to do to see what their current (or former) customers are saying about them. Are they easy to contact for support? What’s the average time it takes to respond to a ticket? When they find a problem with a site, what’s their course of action?
This is one of the great things about social media – ask a question about a company, and you’re more likely than not to get a few answers.
14. Scalability / Room to Grow
Finally, an important thing to consider about your hosting provider (and the plan you choose) is whether or not they fit into your plans for the future. In other words, what you consider adequate hosting now might not meet your needs two years from now, once you start selling your wares online and getting some good traffic to your site.
Any web-based enterprise should have its eye on growth, so if a hosting company might have difficulty accommodating that growth it could pose an issue. Does the host have VPS or Dedicated Server solutions? Will they be able to easily upgrade your account? Transferring from one host to another takes valuable time and effort which could be avoided if the company can scale their solutions for growth. As with all these factors, do some research, get some opinions, and make an informed decision.
So Which Web Hosting Company to Choose
Based strictly on the data, there were three hosts that really stood out
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