If you’re tired of being duped into buying hosting from a bad company, or if you just don’t want your money to go to waste, then I urge you to keep reading. For many people, hosting is serious business. Your entire business and even livelihood can rest on how well your host works. Not only that, but your SEO and marketing campaign can suffer if you have a bad host. Here are a few things that you need to check to ensure that you found a good host.
Customer and Technical Support
What type of customer support can you expect from the host? Many times, people call the company when there’s a problem just to find out that the customer support team is inept and rude. You should call or email them before buying any hosting to ensure that you are getting qualified representatives to help you. If the representative can’t answer some basic questions, then you need to move on.
You should also consider technical support. How quickly can they fix servers, and what features are offered to keep downtime to a minimum? For example, do they use redundant servers and constantly create backup files? Or, do the technicians sit around and waste hours before fixing a server?
Hackers often attack hosts because a successful breach of the network can give the hacker control of hundreds or thousands of websites. This not only hurts their uptime and speed, but it can compromise your entire website. While you should take steps to secure your own website, the host should also do some work.
Make sure that the host has some of the security basics like antivirus software, constant monitoring, regular backups and an advanced firewall. If the host doesn’t have this, then expect your website to be hacked at any moment.
Many hosts give you the opportunity to sell their services at a wholesale rate. It’s not bad to get hosting from a reseller, but you have to know what you’re in for. Customer service is often slower because the reseller has to pass on your emails and calls to the host. The reseller also can’t fix the servers.
The best way to figure out if someone is a reseller is to just ask. Most people will be honest about this. You should still get quality service, but you may want to avoid reseller hosts if you need a responsive company that can quickly react to your problems and concerns.
How long does it take for the average Web page to load from their servers? The host should easily be able to give you this information. If the loading speed is more than three seconds (especially if it’s five to 10 seconds), then you need to find someone else. People will start leaving your website if it takes longer than three seconds to load. You’ll also lose sales from impatient customers.
Not only that, but poor loading times is a sign of bad hardware or overstuffing the servers. You don’t want to deal with either of these problems because it just means that you will get few resources and major headaches.
Much like reseller hosting, unlimited hosting isn’t necessarily bad, but you need to know what you’re getting in to. Unlimited hosts can’t give you terabyte after terabyte of bandwidth. They are instead supplying you with about 1-10GB of bandwidth and memory on average.
That’s not too shabby if you just need cheap hosting for a personal blog, but it can hurt your profits if you are a business owner or major blogger. It’s better to get metered or VPS hosting in this case.
The uptime standard is about 99%. There are some hosts out there that offer 95% uptime, but the hosting is usually incredibly cheap and often full of spammers (which can hurt your SEO). You should also use a third-party service to ensure that the guaranteed uptime is correct. Having better uptime is wonderful, but lower is a sign of a bad host.
No one wants to put their website’s life into someone else’s hands, but this is often the case when you are selecting a host. If you want your website to thrive, then just do some thorough research into these areas to see if you found a great host or a dud.