The host is the heart and soul of a website – ask the businesses who suffered during hurricane Sandy when hosting providers had to shut down their offices to prevent server damage.
Whether you decide to go with a new web host because you’re new to online business or are fed up with your old hosting provider (and server crashes, lost files etc.), there are some things you need to keep in mind before making a final selection.
This means you need to look beyond the ease of migration and reasonable prices. Some of the important offerings you need to consider include:
- Live chat support
Live chat support is more important than ever for quick disaster and technical issue recovery. A provider that offers support only through email can end up costing months of hard work, so you would want to go with someone who can respond to your queries in real time.Matt Cutts has clearly stated that a short downtime doesn’t hurt the rankings of a website. But without live chat support, you can easily go beyond the 3 day downtime limit because it takes time for the technical staff to get a grip on your query.
- Cloud technology
A host that stores all the data in a single location presents a lot of risk. This is because if the provider has to shut down the facility (because of a natural disaster or some other reason), your business is going to suffer.Therefore, you should choose a web host that offers cloud technology in different packages. For example, ServerPronto offers cloud hosting for businesses in custom, VPS and dedicated server packages. With such options, not only do you get access to the cloud, but you’re also able to take advantage of instant scalability, flexible infrastructure and customization features regardless of the package you choose.
- Scalable resource pricing
This is the point where a lot of individuals/businesses running a website pay extra bucks unnecessarily to the web host. You don’t need an unlimited bandwidth if you get a 10 to 20 thousand pageviews per month, or a 2000 GB hard drive if all you’re going to post is text and image based content.
Likewise, you should be able to increase only the bandwidth if the website traffic increases rather than pay for a package that includes a bigger disk space, RAM etc. (remember that it’s the bandwidth that’s going to accommodate the traffic spike, not the extra RAM or hard disk).
- No contracts
The last thing you would want is to get yourself regards a contract with a hosting provider. Some hosts don’t mention that a contract has to be signed on their service pages, ideally where they market different servers available. However, users automatically bind themselves into an agreement when they click on the ‘I accept the terms and conditions’ checkbox.Most people don’t have the time to go through the terms and conditions page. This can be devastating if the conditions state the users can’t access their disk data until they pay fees or stay for another three months with the host. A reliable provider clearly lists ‘no contracts’ on its service pages.
Keep these aspects in mind when choosing a web host; your website is going to thank you in the long run.