What to Look For When Choosing a Web Hosting Provider

web-hosting-guide

It is very important to choose the right hosting service for you website. The wrong service could affect how users experience your website or could limit the features that you can include when designing a page. There are several things to consider when choosing a hosting provider.

 

Type of Hosting

You will want to choose a service that provides that right hosting option for your website. Providers usually offer shared, virtual private or dedicated hosting. Shared hosting means your website runs on the same server as many other customers. Shared hosting is inexpensive but sometimes has issues with performance. Virtual private hosting means your website is in a customizable partition on a shared server. Virtual private hosting is cost-effective and allows for good security. Dedicated hosting means your website is the only account on a server. Dedicated hosting is the best option for a large website or an ecommerce website.

 

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Support for Scripting and Programming Languages

If you are planning to use scripts or server-side applications, then it is important to choose a host that supports these languages. Not all hosts allow clients to run server-side scripts and applications. The host should specifically support the languages that will be used. It is also helpful if you can determine the extent of support and the version of the runtimes or libraries installed on the servers. This will ensure you have no problems running and writing scripts.

 

Flexible Hosting Plans

The hosting provider should offer flexible and scalable plans. It should be possible to upgrade to a more comprehensive plan at any time. A good web hosting provider will allow you to increase the amount of storage or processing power as needed. It is best to avoid providers that are only offering a single plan that cannot be modified over time. Choosing a provider with flexible plans allows you to expand the website as your business grows over time. It avoids all the problems that are associated with migrating to a new server just to get more space or better performance.

 

Content Management System Support

The hosting service should have some support for content management systems. If they do not, then you should look for a host with an integrated custom control panel. These systems make it easy to manage a website and update content without having to work exclusively through raw files and shell accounts. A content management system gives you a graphical user interface that can be used to design and update a website. You do not need to understand file permissions or complex shell commands when a hosting provider supports these types of tools.

 

Reliability

You will want to choose a hosting service that is reliable. Downtime is a reality that many website owners must deal with at some point. Technical problems could force a host to take down the servers for a certain period of time. Necessary maintenance or software updates can do the same. You should look for a host that has uptime statistics close to 100 percent. This is the percentage of time the servers are up and running each year. Hosting services with uptime totals below 90 percent should be avoided.

 

Bandwidth Limitations

You will want to check whether the hosting service has bandwidth limitations. Hosts that limit bandwidth usually throttle users or simply take down a website if more than a certain amount of data is transferred each month or day. It is often easiest to choose a service or plan that allows for unlimited bandwidth.

 

Technical Support

The final thing you should look for is good technical support. You are likely to encounter at least a few technical problems when building and maintaining a website. A web hosting service that has fast and knowledgeable technical support will take the frustration out of running a website. You should choose a hosting service that offers multiple ways to get technical support.