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What to consider when choosing a web hosting partner?

Posted by: Nick Spalding Category: Websites Tags:

We’ve outlined some of things we think you should consider when deciding which website hosting company to use. We have plenty of experience of working with a number of website hosting providers and hope this blog will help guide you towards making the right decision for you and your company.

Here’s some things to consider;

  1. How many websites will you be hosting with the provider?
  2. What are your web hosting needs – e.g., how many visitors per day, databases, email accounts?
  3. What is your budget for hosting services?
  4. What are the company’s uptime guarantees?
  5. How long do you plan on staying with the company?
  6. Is customer support available 24/7 or just during certain hours?
  7. Does the company provide one-click installation for popular platforms like Drupal or WordPress?

How many websites will you be hosting with the provider?

You may not even be thinking, “How many websites will I be able to host with the provider?”

But this may become relevant if you want to host sub-domains, landing pages, customer service databases and more.

If you need to have a lot of domains on one hosting account and just want an affordable price, then it’s best for you to find a shared hosting company that offers unlimited domains, although our experience with these shows the delivery of pages can sometimes be slow with a shared cloud hosting service.

In contrast, if you’re looking for maximum performance from your website and don’t mind paying a little more per month, then it would be better for you to look into picking a Business Hosting server, a virtual private server (VPS) or a dedicated server plan.

What are your web hosting needs – e.g., how many visitors per day, databases, email accounts?

Do you know how many visitors your website receives per day? What about databases and email? If not, it’s time to find out!

These are all pertinent questions that should be addressed before signing up for web hosting.

We can help you with the importance of understanding them when making decisions and give some recommendations on where to go if you need help. So let’s get started with defining your requirements.

What is your budget for hosting services?

If you’re like me, in the early days admittedly, hosting services were one of the easiest things to overlook when it comes to your website. I mean, how often do we think about who is providing our site with a place to live on the internet?

It turns out that this service can be very costly if not done right. The average cost for web hosting ranges from less than £2.00 to £50.00 per month and for larger e-com/corporate sites, even more, so its probably a good idea to define your budget.

What are the company’s uptime guarantees?

If you’re a business owner, you’ve likely heard the importance of website uptime.

Some providers offer guarantees on their service while others don’t seem to care if your site crashes every day!

We’ll help you find the perfect solution for your needs, because believe it or not a difference of 99% to 99.9% uptime can be quite dramatic and impact how much time your site spends offline.

How long do you plan on staying with your webhosting provider?

This might not be your first consideration when choosing a website hosting partner but actually it can make all the difference.

You know how it is, like with a mobile phone provider, where you think the grass is greener, only for you to make a change and realise you wish you’d stayed with your original provider?

It can be much the same with web hosting partners. Our advice is when you find a good one, stick with them.

We have worked with a number of web hosting providers over the years, often at the behest of our clients, only to discover the hosting service is appallingly atrocious. This isn’t always apparent until you try and build a website on it or host something, by which time it can be too late.

Cheapest is not always best, unless you want your website to perform really badly. The two go hand in hand, the cheaper the service, the lower the performance.

It seems often websites are hosted on really poor services because website owners do not know any better services exist or realise that so much more is available from good providers.

Is customer support available 24/7?

Will the company provide a quality customer service experience or will it be difficult to get in contact with them if there’s an issue?

Lots of customer support desks are manned overseas. This can cause a problem if you require service when they are not available. Often customers take pride in telling us their website is hosted in America. That’s great if you’re in America. If you’re in the UK it is likely you will have to wait 5-8 hours for the service desk to wake up.

We prefer to choose hosting partners who operate a UK based customer support team or at least offers support from teams working in the same time zones.

Does the company provide one-click installation for popular platforms like Drupal or WordPress?

And why is this even important?

Web hosting providers offering one-click installations of popular applications, including Dupral, WordPress, Magento and others. This will save you development time and cost.

It is also likely to save you maintenance time on an ongoing basis too. Often hosting providers take care of automatic updates for applications to run your website if they are installed using their one-click installation service.

In Conclusion

We hope this guide to some of things you should consider when choosing your web hosting partner has helped you make a decision.

If not, please feel free to contact us with any questions you may have.We can help answer your web hosting needs and find a service that fits all of your requirements, so don’t hesitate to reach out or schedule a call.