Most people are not aware that their choice of web hosting matters. There are more factors to consider than price, disk space, and bandwidth. If you are serious about growing your business-then you need to evaluate whether your current cheap or prospective web hosting provider measures up.
Your choice of web hosting can affect your:
- Monthly cost
- Search engine rankings
- Ecommerce ability
- Email reliability
- Analytics reporting
- Site building/maintenance ease
- Customer support
In many cases, you get an introductory cheap, low cost price and then that low price hosting will end up costing you more in the long run when they raise your rates, or you have to add features that are standard elsewhere. These highly advertised companies will also aggressively try to sell you services you do not need.
Search engines look at a number of factors when determining their search rankings that relate to web hosting. Factors such as page speed load time, the number of other websites on the same server, and server uptime are just a few things that can affect your search rankings.
Other things to consider include whether your hosting company offers eCommerce packages. You will want to make sure that software programs you will be using to sell your products are supported by the hosting company.
For many businesses, having consistent and reliable email delivery is also essential so you need to inquire what security measure the host has in place to block spammers from using their servers and how effective they are at doing that.
Many hosting companies also offer analytics programs built in so you will need to see what comes with your hosting package, whether they support other analytics programs and what charges are additional.
Also, if you are choosing your hosting because of their built in site building tools you should know that many low cost hosting WYSIWYG (what you see is what you get) website building programs are difficult to manage to optimize your site. In fact, many will negatively affect your chances of getting high search engine optimization (SEO) rankings by interfering, or limiting SEO best practices.
Additionally, I recommend looking at the ratings for their customer support. If you need more support in your work then choose a hosting company with a higher customer service rating. You may also want to choose a host that specializes in the platform you are using. For example, WordPress site developers oftentimes use a hosting provider like Westhost, or Zippykid that specializes in WordPress so they can get specialized support.
In many of the sites that I build I use Hostmonster because I prefer their customer support, easy to use control panel, as well as the extra features they offer.
In summary, I recommend doing some research online on hosting companies to see what people are saying about the company you are considering using. Make sure you are looking at impartial third party ratings (preferably customers) to determine whether the host is right for you and your business. In addition, make sure that you call the company directly to test out their support for yourself and see if their hosting is right for your website.
Disclosure: We are a professional marketing site that receives compensation from some of the companies whose products or services we review. We have used, tested and reviewed the web hosting services mentioned here and we have a material connection with Hostmonster. We are independently owned and the opinions expressed here are our own.