What’s up? Hope you all are safe and healthy. Today we’re back with another impressive topic – factors to consider when selecting a hosting service. In this article, 10+ industry experts (Digital Marketers, Founders & Bloggers) share their valuable points on web hosting buying guide. So, let’s dive in.
Choosing a web host is the most important step to get your business online and at the same time it is a big decision as it ensure the success of your business.
With the right web host, you can see improvement in website performance. Choose wrongly can put you in big issues causing all kinds of headaches as well as you may have unnecessary expenses. So, before you choose web host for your next projects or next blog, please check these web hosting buying guide 2020.
In this article, we’re going to explore some of the factors that you need to consider when selecting a hosting service for your business. 10+ industry experts (Digital Marketers, Founders & Bloggers) are sharing their points here:
1.) Kelly Stanze
Manager of Marketing & Communications of KURU Footwear. 10 Years of digital experience, with 8+ in website strategy specifically
When considering hosting solutions, I always first consider these things:
1.) How is the provider’s server uptime? To go somewhat further, is there a lot of outage time? Do they favor certain customers over others, causing some customers to be at higher risk of outage than others?
2.) How is the customer service?
3.) How is the user interface?
The first one is vital, and can be tracked out through customer reviews and on online forums. Some hosting providers have a reputation for outages or poor speed, while others set a gold standard, and others may fall in between but perhaps buffer outages with top tier support and customer service. If you research a hosting provider and see a lot of reviews regarding server outages which can cause websites to go down, email to stop working, and other issues…steer clear.
Some hosting providers have specific servers that perform better than others. If you’re worried about this, talk to your hosting solution about whether or not you can request a more stable server. This is where server stability and customer service meet.
Customer service can be the difference between a website or email service being down for 5 minutes, and being down for hours at a time. Customer service is especially important during peak seasons. For instance, does your service provider offer additional support coverage during peak times like Cyber Monday? If your hosting providers aren’t providing additional on-call or fully-on support resources during known widespread spikes, I’d consider someone else..
Customer service can also be make-or-break in things like migrations. While we love for things to go completely smooth, small businesses especially that don’t have an in-house tech team would be wise to work with hosting providers that offer a high quality of support in things like migrations, CMS installations, and more.
The user interface of a hosting platform matters. It’s especially important for organizations that don’t have dedicated technical teams, such as smaller companies. If you’re DIYing your website and other server-based services, a clean and simple user experience is a requirement for a hosting service. Convoluted management and navigation options don’t do anyone any favors, but hosting providers are notorious for messy user experience.
2.) Clovis Chow
Having switched recently from Bluehost to Siteground, I feel that I am able to give you my thoughts on this question.
Firstly, the most important factor I would consider while choosing a web host is site speed.
With the many statistics and data on how site speed greatly affects both the number of visits and site experience, I feel that getting a web host with one of the fastest speeds is crucial. I would not want a situation where my content is great but the growth of my blog is hindered by slow loading and bad user experience.
Secondly, the next most important factor would be price.
I would prefer cheaper options where I would get the same high speed and performance and so I chose Siteground for their relatively affordable plans and good performance.
You may be wondering from the first point, since I wanted speed, why did I not go for WPX Hosting. Price is the reason, The basic plan is quite expensive at $24.99 monthly as compared to Siteground $6.99.
Thirdly, I would consider security as one of the key factors too when choosing a web host. Siteground boasts capable security crews that monitor the servers for any intrusion.
Furthermore, Siteground ensures that its servers are not overloaded such that security may be compromised. However, for Bluehost, the servers are often overloaded with poor security measures to prevent attacks.
The astonishing thing is, not too long after I used Bluehost, my website got hacked.
Hence, security measures, server overload, capability of the company’s monitoring crew are key factors I consider too.
Thank you for reading and I hope my opinions have brought some value to you.
3.) James Walsh
A good server host is needed for your website to perform better. In order to get good speed, security, scalability, and support its important that you take your time and choose your web host with due consideration. Here are a few steps you need to follow before choosing a web host.
Figure out your website needs
Do you need to process online payments? Are you starting an e-commerce site or sharing a portfolio? Some web hosts offer tools and infrastructure that support particular types of websites or functionality. The suitable web host will support the platforms or building tools you need to create the website you want, as well as provide your site with adequate storage, speed, and reliability.
Consider your Building and Bundling Options
Host and builder combined
Many web-building services offer hosting as well. This lets you build your website and host it in one package.
Separate Hosting and Builder
You can choose a web host that doesn’t offer web building if you’re building an entirely custom website or If you are using a specific website builder such as WordPress that doesn’t offer hosting.
Now that you know what you are looking for in a website host you need to search for website hosts and find the perfect match for your needs..
Some key factors that you need to consider while searching are:
- Technical requirements
- Ease of use
- Support Services
- Easy Setup
- Cancellation Policy
4.) Nikola Roza
Here are 5 key factors to consider when choosing a new host
#1- What do other people say about them? You’re not the first to think about purchasing hosting from company X, and many have done it before you. So do your research, visit review aggregator sites like Trustpilot and G2, and see what people talk about your potential future host. You could save yourself a lot of headache.
#2- What’s the uptime percentage? Having a website that’s often down defeats the purpose of having an online business. So, check to see if they have an uptime guarantee, The industry standard is 99.95% and anything below 99%, you need to run away from.
#3- Do they have a refund policy? Knowing that you can request and receive your money back will help you have a peace of mind when buying. Because you know it doesn’t have to be permanent.
#4- Do they offer free automatic backups? Having a backup system in place is crucial for having peace of of mind and security in knowing that if something really bad were to happen to your site, you could fix it in 2m or less. All reputable hosting companies offer free backups and you should not settle in this area because it’s really important.
#5- Whats the support like- No matter how you take care of your site, accidents will happen. And when they do, it’s up to you to contact support so they can help you solve your problems. They are experts and it’s their job to help you. So make sure you research and pick a company who takes pride in their customer service.
Otherwise you’ll be fixing problems yourself which will cost you your time, money, or both.
Plus you won’t be working on building your online business.
5.) Kimberly Smith
I read your article about starting a blog in 2020 from scratch. Great work!
I’d love to share my insight on what to consider when choosing a web host, from a small biz perspective:
Tech support/customer service:
Most small businesses don’t have a dedicated IT team on-site to help troubleshoot issues as they arise. For this reason, customer service and tech support should be a priority consideration for companies with smaller teams. Things like accessibility matter here because when there’s a glitch in the software, these breakdowns can create costly and timely inefficiencies. The goal is to correct an issue as soon as it arises to mitigate the effects on workflow.
Good web hosts are uncomplicated and easy to use. Reducing waste is key to increasing efficiency, and if the web hosting system is confusing, or hard to navigate, you’re going to be spending too much time training and troubleshooting. For a small business, these inefficiencies have a compounding effect on the company.
No flashy features/simplicity-
A common pitfall some small businesses make is thinking that web hosts with robust features are the better option. Robust systems can also be unnecessarily complicated, and oftentimes, there isn’t a true need for these extra functions like there may be at larger companies. You want to find a simple solution at an affordable cost.
6.) Stephanie Fatta
When it comes to web hosting, there are three main factors I take into consideration.
1. Recommendations – ask fellow website owners which web host they use. Many will sing their praises on who they use and why. Ask those in your industry—for example, if you’re a blogger, ask your blogger friends.
2. Customer Service – I am not that web savvy, so when my site goes down, I know I need someone who can be there to help me fix the problem. Just because a web host is a big company and advertises during a sports game, doesn’t make them the best. Also, having a famous spokesperson doesn’t make them the best either.
Your friends will also mention customer service. As a website owner, we usually have to contact customer service.
3. Reliability – choose a host that offers reliable service. You don’t want your site down for hours and hours or even days! This is also where customer service comes in. Do they help you fix the problem or let you know when it will be fixed?
7.) Mark Rapley
When choosing a web host, it’s important to keep in mind the Triple S’s: Speed, Security, Support.
Speed: One of the most significant factors for a website’s bounce rate is slow loading times. If you want your website visitors to stay on your site, speed is critical to ensure they can access your information. The ideal load time should remain between 2-5 seconds. Otherwise, your visitors will likely lose interest and search for a different source.
Security: Security needs to be a top priority for anyone who owns a website, especially if your site hosts valuable or sensitive information. A good web host will be continually upgrading its security measures and should monitor the network regularly for unauthorized activity. Seek hosts that offer SSL certificates (some are included in your pricing, and some offer it for an additional cost) and encrypted backups. It’s also a good idea to seek ones with email/spam filtering options. This will help for convenience as well as demonstrate that the web host takes security seriously, as ones don’t offer this service may not be prioritizing security.
Support: Be sure to look at reviews of a company, specifically how their support is. When there’s a problem with your website’s hosting, you want to have it fixed as quickly and efficiently as possible. Ensuring the company you choose has a quick response time and can help promptly is a great asset that shouldn’t be overlooked.
8.) Robert Moses
When it comes to considering different web hosting sites, there are a few notable considerations that should be taken into account. First and foremost, is reliability. You will only want to consider a web host that has a reliability and uptime score over 99.95%, which is the current industry standard. As a general rule of thumb, any web host that has a reliability of less than 99% should be avoided.
Secondly, and nearly as importantly as the first point, is the web hosts features and offerings. More likely than not, you will be opting to build a website on the WordPress platform. Although WordPress is simple and easy to understand, many major web hosts are beginning to offer one-click WordPress installers, making the process seamless and efficient.
Lastly, when it comes to choosing a web host, you will want to look for one that allows you to upgrade easily. While your current option may be perfect for your current needs, you may need to move from shared hosting to a dedicated one. Although this may not occur until multiple years down the line, it is important to take into consideration and save yourself the future headache.
9.) Kenny Trinh
CEO of Netbooknews. He has been blogging for almost 3 years now and founder & CEO of a 2-year-old media startup.
Most important factors to consider when choosing a hosting provider:
1. Work out what you need
Are you a small start‐up company, or a big organization? Does your site have an e-commerce function? Choose a hosting provider that will accommodate your business growth and changing needs into the future. Should you be looking for a dedicated server?
2. Customer service
If your website is down or there are technical issues your business will suffer, so look for a company that provides good support. Being able to chat with someone live is best, or quick email service. Don’t choose a hosting service that only provides a support forum. Glitches of some kind are inevitable, so you need to be able to talk to someone to get it fixed fast!
Look for a hosting provider that will allow you to make changes to your site such as creating new email accounts or changing server settings. Make sure you can access email in a number of different ways including online, so if Outlook crashes you can still check your email from other devices.
4. Read the fine print
Another business basic but do make sure you check to see exactly what you’re buying and look out for ‘extras’ that you might expect to be part of your package. Email accounts, Email forwarding, and blogs may all be counted as extras. And if the start‐up rate looks too good to be true, it probably is. Don’t get stung for basic services as add‐ons.
The other fine print issue is to make sure you can take your business elsewhere if you’re not happy with your web hosting service, especially whether you can take your domain name with you if you leave. And as your domain name is your business’ internet identity, that’s pretty important!
10.) Yash Mehta
Choosing a web host is an important task. A lot depends on the web host. You are coming up with a blog or website, everything is perfect in terms of designing and execution. But imagine if the web host service isn’t that great. This could prove to be a disaster for your hard work. So to make things simple, focus on the three “S” when it comes to choosing a web host.
1 – Speed
Choose a web host service that offers good speed with no uptime. In some cases, the servers show 100% availability but are not reliable in the long-term. If your uptime is low, there are chances that your site may breakdown or load slowly. This leads to frustration for anyone willing to access your website. Eventually, you will lose clients and the reputation of a good website.
2 – Security
A secure web host is very important because there will be sensitive data on your website. There could be credentials, personal profile information, login accounts, etc. This also means that your web host should backup your data frequently and then store it safely.
3 – Support
Support is needed for your website in a lot of ways. Now consider that you have started as a small website with limited features. But within 6 months, you might need to upgrade your web host services. For this, again you need to connect with the support and understand the new features. So this process should be flawless. Apart from that, support is needed in many other situations like website backup, website down, etc.
11.) Shmuel Fogel
The top factors to consider when choosing a good web host are site performance/speed, security, what’s included, and cost.
The first thing I look for in a host is site speed. It is crucial to make sure that your website loads extremely quickly. This provides a much better user experience and is also beneficial for SEO.
Next, security is a big deal, and no one wants to have to deal with a harmful virus or attack that affects their website. Many web hosts have great built in security features to prevent these attacks and maximize the uptime of the website.
Depending on your needs, it is important to look at everything included with your host. This includes email addresses, how many GB of storage it has, and any limits on the visits/month, etc. You don’t want to purchase a hosting plan that doesn’t include everything you need! At the same time, you also don’t want to purchase a massive 120 GB hosting plan for a small website.
Lastly, cost is a factor – especially if you’re creating the website for a client. This by no means suggests that you should look for the cheapest host available; it is a balance between the benefits of the host and its pricing.
Comparing a few web hosts based on these guidelines before purchasing can help make sure you get the most efficient web host for your project.
12.) Robin Young
We have used the two most popular web hosting services out there – WP Engine and Siteground.
Naturally, the first thing to consider is cost. If you are on a tight budget then you will want to choose an option which you can afford. For this reason, you might opt for Siteground as they have the cheapest packages around.
If you’re not great with computers or the technical side of things, you should consider the kind of customer service and support you might get. We can testify that WP Engine’s support is better and they are quicker to respond than Siteground. Unfortunately, especially since coronavirus hit, Siteground has a message on their support that you can only use live chat if your site is down or there is a serious issue – even on their more expensive cloud-based hosting packages.
We found site speed to be similar on both hosting services, however, we have hade more technical issues with Siteground. For example, we have 40 gb of storage, and if you’ve used 32 gb, you probably wont be able to restore backups because you actually need more space to do this, which they do not make you aware of. So, if you are looking at the cheaper packages offered by Siteground, you might need to factor in more hard drive space to ensure you can easily make backups.
One of the main reasons of moving to Siteground was that we needed more resources. Siteground allows you to scale elements such as memory and CPUs, whereas WP Engine does not. For us to get the resource we needed with Wp Engine, we would have had to move from their growth plan to their scale plan which was way too expensive (more than £100 per month more than we would pay for similar resources on Siteground).
Another thing to consider is whether you’re likely to have spikes in traffic or heavy seasonality. Siteground has an autoscale features which means if you go over the CPU or memory usage, you can add CPUs or more memory for one month to cope with the increased traffic.
It is really important to understand that while Siteground make out that everything is scalable, if you increase your disk storage on their cloud plan, you cannot then decrease it. We learned the hard way, and had to set up an entirely new hosting package to lower the disk space again.
13.) Ninju Narang
We have gone shopping for a great web host and are sharing our experience here.
We discovered that almost all of them make similar claims like –
High Uptime, 24-7 support, good customer ratings, unlimited bandwidth, unlimited disk space, etc. and so on and so forth. Which adds to the confusion and requires extra homework from our end..
The homework starts with understanding your own requirements and technical expertise. For example, if you are not very technical, the last thing you want is spending hours learning how to install a website or not being able to make minor changes without calling technical support. You also do not want to focus only on price while ignoring reliability.
Once you have all your requirements known to you, you should contact the customer support team of the hosting company and ask questions. According to us, the number one key factor is the customer support that you receive. At this stage, you will know how willing the company is to understand your requirements and be of service to you. They will help you bring a lot of clarity and you will be assured that in case you face a problem, later on, you are in the hands of a good support team that will be available for your rescue.
We learned this after our trial and error with hosting providers and are happy with the services and support of our current provider who we have finalized using the approach above.
Choosing the right hosting for a website can be a little daunting especially if it’s for someone’s first website. A few considerations I advise people to take into account are:
1. Downtime! Server downtime affects a website considerably weather in sales or followers. If visitors can’t get through to your site the first time generally they won’t come back. As a minimum, the host should offer a 99% uptime guaranteed.
2. When starting out usually managed hosting is a good choice so you can focus on the site rather than what is happening behind the scenes. Remember to make sure there is room for you to grow as you may want to build other sites or expand into e-commerce. The host should have the flexibility to allow you to upgrade as you need.
3. The type of customer support that a host gives is a key factor. Personally I would prefer to use a host that has 24/7 live chat. The main reason I recommend live chat above phone support is that it provides easy to follow instructions and a reference for future similar issues.
Wrapping Up: Web Hosting Buying Guide 2020
Every website has a different needs. There is never a fixed and permanent solution to web hosting needs. All you need is the top-notch service provider to host your website. Hope you’ve gained a lot from these experts opinion.
We would love to hear from you. If you’ve answer related to these topics feel free to share with us. We’ll include those points here.
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