Before you publish your website on the Internet, you should know what to look for in a web host.
Mind you, hosting companies offer promising features like unlimited bandwidth and multiple subdomains. Not to mention that they provide discounted hosting pricing during the first year.
However, you want to ensure that your web host is at least 99% available, offers 24/7 support, has both site and store builders, and so much more.
It is also up to you to do your homework when choosing your next web hosting provider. As such, here are six valuable features you should look for in a reliable web host:
Your site will have texts, images, videos, and other files along with the code. Your hosting provider will give you a dedicated space to store your website code and media files.
Also, some hosts will offer unlimited storage, but once you read their Terms and Services in fine print, you’ll only see “normal site usage.”
You should know how much data storage you’ll use before buying or go with a host that provides you with clear limits.
According to WP Host NZ, “Bandwidth is the amount of data that your web host provider will allow you and your customers to upload or download every month. So, once you’ve hosted files and converted them into a website, that’s where bandwidth comes in.”
Several web hosting providers offer unlimited bandwidth. But if not handled well, this can limit the amount of site traffic that you can receive. And this can affect your site’s overall performance.
Now, what will happen if you have limited bandwidth? After the limit is over, either the hosting provider won’t allow any more viewers or charge you extra for every megabyte you consume.
So, before choosing a package, check the bandwidth limit that will be provided first.
Remember that your bandwidth is something that you should keep an eye on. More so, if you’re on a popular website or doing something that’s media-intensive. An excellent example would be hosting high-resolution photos and videos.
If you think there’s somewhat a grey area there, better find out what the limits are, or choose a host who sets the bar where everyone can see it.
A web host that offers excellent security features is something that you should go for. This is true, especially if you plan to collect your customers’ sensitive information on your website.
Here are some security features that you should be looking for with your web hosting provider:
- Daily back-ups: It won’t matter if it’s your fault or your web host. After you lose your site’s content without a back-up plan, then it’s already gone.
- SSL: It doesn’t matter whether you own an e-commerce site or you don’t plan to use a third-party service that will handle your customers’ payments data. The most important thing is that you choose a hosting service that can provide you with SSLs.
- SiteLock: This will usually scan for malware, preventing your website from being blacklisted. Also, having a SiteLock badge on your site will show protection, gaining your customers’ trust.
Usually, expensive security features aren’t included in cheap plans. So, carefully go through what every program offers, as your whole data can become vulnerable if your site doesn’t have good security.
Uptime is the amount of time that servers are in use and is usually measured by percentage. Don’t instantly believe what web hosting companies are saying about their uptime.
If you want actual numbers, you can check out independent online tools like Pingdom, Host Tracker, and UptimeRobot. These tools can help measure your web host’s uptime rate.
Looking for a site that can offer you 100% uptime is impossible. Ideally, look for a web host that offers at least 99 percent uptime. This equals a web host with only seven hours and 12 minutes per month.
Number of domains and subdomains
If you run several websites, you’ll have difficulty managing the hosting account for every website. So, see to it that your service provider will allow you to host several domains.
You’d often find a limit to the domains you can own in a single account.
Still, it would be best if you made sure that the add-on domains provided to you by the hosting provider will meet your business’s requirements.
Whenever you encounter hosting problems, the first thing that will probably come to mind is customer support. But if they’re not available during the times, you need them the most?
That would be so frustrating on your part.
Also, do they have a support email address? A ticket system? Quick response times? A live chat? Or a library of helpful tutorials? Don’t pick a host unless you know what type of support they offer.
By knowing what features you should look for in a web hosting provider and the things you need, you can look for a good host that’s the right fit for your company.