How To Find a Web Hosting Company
Your website needs a home, right? This article will help you figure out how to find a hosting company. This is not an endeavor that should be taken lightly. Why? Because once you find a hosting company for your site, you need to be in it for the long haul. Moving a website is a big hassle for the average person. Not to mention, it could have a negative impact on your rankings.
Most people are not in the position to host their own websites unless they are web developers running a dedicated server. While that may seem like an attractive option, you must also consider that your dedicated server has to be switched on and running 24/7.
If you are away on vacation or even for the day and you lose electricity for any reason, your server is offline and people can’t get to your site. Unless of course, you happen to have a UPS (universal power supply) for such emergencies. These options are very costly and for the average blogger they are not necessary. This article will help you figure out how to choose web hosting for your website.
Before you start looking around for web hosting, you should have an idea of how much you are willing to spend and what features you will need from your web hosting company. This will all depend on what type of site you are building and how big you hope it will grow. Be sure that the hosting company you choose can handle the growth of your site. You may need to purchase a domain name. You can buy your domain name and hosting package at the same time with the same company.
What is web hosting used for?
Web hosting is used to hold your WordPress site and keep all your files in one place. (Most packages also allow you to have more than one site.) Your domain name is the address of your site while the web hosting provides the location for all your site files, site emails, etc. You can think of it as a file cabinet. The file cabinet, itself, is the hosting company while the file drawers are the individual hosting accounts and the files themselves are your website files.
What is a web hosting server?
A web hosting server is a physical server dedicated to hosting websites and their files. Servers have very large storage capacities so it won’t be necessary for you to have a dedicated server for your site. Shared web hosting is much more economical.
What is shared web hosting?
Shared web hosting is one of the easiest and cheapest way to get web hosting. Shared hosting means that your account and many others share space on a server and share the same resources. You need to know the maximum amount of space allowed for your package.
What is dedicated hosting?
Dedicated hosting is very expensive because it’s very powerful. You only need to get dedicated hosting if you intend to have a very large site that perhaps had a store on it. Dedicated hosting means that your site will reside on one physical server all by itself. The server will not be shared with other websites. It’s the most expensive option because dedicated servers have the most resources and the least amount of downtime.
Features to Look For:
24/7 customer support: This will really come in handy if you install something incorrectly or your site crashes and you don’t know why. You want to be able to contact your web hosting provider by phone, email or live chat.
Uptime monitors: these monitor the status of your website by displaying how long the site has been up and available. If your site is down on a regular basis, you could be losing business. This could indicate that the company has problems with their hardware or software.
Bandwidth: If you want to create a site that has a lot of pictures, it will take longer to load. Considering again, that if your site has a lot of traffic, you will need a lot of bandwidth to ensure that your site doesn’t slow to a crawl. If so, your visitors will quickly become frustrated and click away from your site.
Site speed: Your hosting company should have statistics on how fast the average web page loads. Standards suggest that a page should take no more than 3 seconds to load. Anything higher than that and you could be losing visitors.
*SSL Certificates: This is becoming more and more important since a recent Google change. Sites with an SSL Certificate are trusted more and are given higher rankings. Another consideration to think about. Make sure your the hosting company you choose can provide SSL Certificates. In general, unless you are running an ecommerce site or some type of shopping site where people make purchases, it isn’t necessary. It’s usually an add-on feature that hosting companies provide. If you’d like to read more about how to buy an SSL certificate, check out my article.
Cost: This will one of the most important considerations when figuring out how to find a web hosting company. Prices will vary depending on the types of services available.
Features That Are Not So Important
FTP access: FTP stands for file transfer protocol. FTP access allows you to transfer files from your computer directly to your site files using an FTP software program. You may or may not need this access. You can still create a website without FTP access.
Shopping carts: You may not need a shopping cart on your website especially if you are just starting out but it’s nice to know that it’s available. That way, as your site grows, you may decide that your site needs a shopping cart. If your hosting company has this feature, you won’t have to move your site. Alternatively, you can always download a shopping cart.