How can you find the right hosting company?
First of all, what is a web hosting provider?
Well, it is a business which rents space on its computers, called servers. When your website is created, looks gorgeous and you are so proud of your hard work…you are nowhere yet! Even when your site is finally published you are nowhere yet… search engines – SEO.
Essentially, a web host provides space on a server which allows the world to view your website.
Now, where do you start? Try to avoid my mistakes.
Anything FREE sounds great but you will pay a price another way. You’ll see advertisements for other companies all over your web page. Customers will click on the links and never come back to your site. This ruins the entire purpose of having your own business online.
Most free or low-cost web hosting services will place the banners at the top of your homepage…visitors come in and go out, before even getting to your title !!! Also, their servers are so overcrowded that you cannot get to your website half of the time. And time is precious. Want to work on your page and upload between your 4pm appointment and dinner time? Well, get ready to wait…and wait, before your new page will get there and show on the web.
Your wife is so upset with you. Even worse (or may be not) your website is down …meaning: your business on internet is closed!!! You have no control over that. Is it worth it to save $10 a month or have a reliable server? Been there, done that. A server is a server, right? WRONG! Shop around. But before that, make sure you know what you need and what are your requirements.
What do you need?
First, make sure you know what you want to do with your website. Is it just for fun personal? Or are you dreaming of selling online and make big money? Or will your site be business related, hoping your clientele will grow by visiting your business on the web?
If you mean to do serious business with your website, then you have to ask yourself: do I need an E-commerce service, or do I need the ability to run CGI scripts? Do I need a database, a content management system? How much space do I need, how many email accounts, what about the speed? Do I need a dedicated IP, PHP, MySQL…How much your website will grow and can you upgrade later? Chinese for you? Well, that is exactly why you have to start building your list: what type of website do you need and the specs in order to operate your site efficiently. Make a list of your requirements…!
Whatever you decide, you need to have a reliable and efficient web host who will assist you with your questions and concerns. Try to go back home once in a while, or if you work from home, open the door every 2 days and let the family come in. They just want to know if you are still alive.
Getting started on the web can be time-consuming if you cannot find a reliable professional who will accept to spend the time to answer all your questions!
Many fine packages for small businesses can be from $10 to $40 per month. But some are $40 not worth it and others around $10 or $12/month, have everything. Took me several years and a huge loss of time to finally get organized with my own hosting company!
Talking about customer service…now that you’ve done your homework, test them when your list is ready. Send a detailed email with all your questions to the web host you think are providing a good set of features for a reasonable price. Be wary if a web host company has no telephone number in case of emergency! Response time to support questions through email could range from several minutes to…never!
If they did not get back to you within 6 to 12 hours, even on weekends…off your list! If there is no way to contact them by phone … off the list!
You are running a serious business, they should respect that and provide the service you deserve. Only choose a host that provides prompt and knowledgeable support and customer service.
Make sure also that your site will be up virtually all the time. Virtually means 99% uptime. Evaluate the packages and make sure you can upgrade if needed. You may even find the perfect web host for you…..just kidding! You will! Good luck!
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