Like many people, when I first registered my domain, back around 2006, I chose the cheapest web host and registrar I could find. I didn’t realize that there was a big difference in service providers, and that transferring web hosts requires some work. So if you are just starting out, I recommend really thinking about who you choose to host with.
5 things to consider when choosing a web host
1. How is their customer support? Can you get a live person on the phone or via chat? How long will you wait to talk to someone? How helpful will they be when you do get in touch?
2. Can your business grow with the host? Do they offer upgraded plans if you start to get a lot of traffic or end up with a very large amount of data on your website? After some time in business an entry level hosting plan may no longer be enough.
3. How reliable is their service? Do there servers often go down or can they guarantee your website will be up all the time? Talk to past customers to make sure the hosts statements ring true with the customer experience.
4. How easy is the interface for your account? Can you navigate through the control panel, do a 1-click install of add-ons such as WordPress? Can you quickly upload a file? Can you also use the host to register your domain? Make sure you can access the items you’ll need to. It’s also handy if they have well documented help files.
5. What is the price? Many hosts will offer a discount for the first year or months, but the rate will go up significantly after the first contract period. Find out what the true cost is, without the new client discount. Hosting can be anywhere from $3 a month to almost $100 a month. There is a big level of service difference between these plans. If you have a new or small website a starter or one step up is probably all you need. I usually find it’s best to pay a little extra for a host that meets all the above requirements, and not just think about cost.
There are many good hosts, and I’m not educated in every one of them. Plus each of our businesses has different needs, so it’s not always the same best choice for each of us. Think of your web host as a commitment and an integral part of your business. Read reviews, ask questions, and then decide which option is best for you.
If you are starting out your business and have questions about setting up your website, 15 minute Skype consults are complimentary. It’s no secret I’m hoping to win your business by offering this but it is truly 15 minutes where you can ask anything you like. To setup a time, simply send me a note.