A web hosting service is essential for anybody wishing to do business online and there is certainly no shortage of companies stepping forward to take your business. In many ways this huge range of choices for consumers is a great thing, but, it also means that making a decision on where to host your websites becomes that much more difficult.
The web hosting industry has seen its fair share of companies making big promises and under delivering time and again. The end result is a mine field of misinformation and disappointed customers who often take it upon themselves to do everything in their power to discredit the hosting company who they feel has done them an injustice.
Hosting companies and hosting deals come in so many different shapes and sizes that it is impossible to cover them in an introductory article such as this. Here are a few pointers to help you when entering the very competitive world of web hosting services.
When you enter the web hosting arena as a new customer, you will often face the difficult task of trying to decide just what is true about the company’s you investigate and what is not. On the one hand, there will be aggressive cautions against using one firm while somewhere else you will read a glowing report on their services. It often feels as though you are negotiating a minefield and feel like bashing your head against a wall in sheer frustration if you are new to the whole subject.
If you find a deal that seems to be just what you are looking for, don’t let the odd dissatisfied or negative review put you off. There probably isn’t a single hosting company in existence that hasn’t had any bad feedback.
There is no definitive “best deal” in the web hosting arena. What you should be looking for is a package that bests suits you, both in terms of features and budget. Before you shop around, make a list of things that are important to you.
A lot of hosting company’s work through affiliates. The hugely competitive market place makes an affiliate program almost an essential requirement for these companies.
This is very common in the web hosting field, and many customers try to blame their misunderstandings on the company. The more vitriolic the attacks on a particular host, the more often you should look for reasoned and calm assessments of their shortcomings. The larger the company’s customer base, the more likely you are to find complaints, but the law of averages will always make this so.
A good host will offer various channels of communication for their customers, usually telephone, live online support and email. If you are buying hosting for the first time, don’t be blinded by huge numbers, because often they are meaningless. You can always upgrade your hosting plan as your business grows – in many cases you will find that you won’t need to do this for some time, so unless you are expecting to see hundreds of thousands of visitors as soon as you launch your website or blog or are going to be hosting huge amounts of data from the outset, don’t worry too much about this.
Read through some web hosting forums in search of feedback by all means, but remember that some of the invective posted by users often has little in the way of both sides of a particular story. Pay attention to those who give calm and well reasoned feedback, not those who cuss and rage.
If you are hosting a business related site, reliability and technical support are going to be major considerations. Guarantees of up time are not always reliable, but, a company should have the confidence to be able to offer 99.9 % – if they don’t, whilst their honesty is to be applauded, maybe they are not the place for your business site.
Good quality hosting is not expensive, but neither is it available for pennies a month. You will find, as with most things, that the universal rule, ‘you get what you pay for’, applies to hosting too. Good shared hosting is still available at very reasonable prices – being cheap may cost you dear.
It is pointless to try and use a hosting company who don’t want your type of website on their servers. It’s not just adult sites that sometimes require specialist hosting and if you think that your online operation is in any way out of the ordinary, talk to your list of potential hosts before signing up.
Choosing a good hosting company at the outset will save a lot of potential grief as your business grows. Being cheap at the start may well end up costing you much more in terms of lost time and hassle a little farther down the road. Steer clear of free hosting for any serious business operation.
The world of web hosting is often a confusing soup of jargon and conflicting opinion, but eventually you will have to make a decision. Hopefully these basic pointers will help to guide you towards a sensible purchase and a happier future relationship with your hosting company.
There are a couple of hosting companies who, in addition to their hosting services, also offer monthly recurring commissions under their affiliate programs. If you are looking to offset the costs of your web hosting, this can be a good way to do so and even to see a residual income from supporting and promoting your web host. This is not something offered by the majority of hosts, but if it is something that appeals to you, you will find more information in the resource links quoted below.
Disclosure: You should assume that the owner of this website is an affiliate for providers of goods and services mentioned on this website. The owner may be compensated when you purchase after clicking on a link. The owner may also have received the product for free. Perform due diligence before purchasing from this or any other website.