As a newbie or pro, when ever you start a new website one of the biggest dilemma is picking the best Webhosting for your next project. When it comes to picking up the best-rated Web hosting companies, we are bombarded with too many options. There are many online websites which compare best Webhosting providers, but in the end we still stay in dilemma to picking up the best one.
An online presence is not like a well-organized dinner party…there is no such thing as a ‘perfect’ Web-host. There are hosts that will come very close and offer very substantial services, but no one host will have everything.
The important factor, when finding a host, is not to get misguided by irrelevant features that don’t concern your current or future hosting requirements. You should be concentrating on finding a provider that combines high quality packages with acceptable cost, has the resources required to offer your site optimal performance, and consistently excels in customer service.
Here are some important points to consider when choosing the Best WebHosting for you:
Features to look in your next Best WebHosting source:
Reputation, Reputation, and Reputation
Many of the web hosts you come across will provide very similar packages with almost identical pricing schemes. Hosting is a competitive market with a very thin line determining success and failure.
The one aspect that a host cannot manipulate, with large-scale advertising and clever marketing, is reputation. Reputation is everything. Positive reputation is earned through superior performance, efficient customer service, attention to detail, and industry awareness.
You cannot gauge reputation on the say-so of the host involved. You will need to dig a little deeper and seek out honest consumer opinion and impartial reviews. The search engine is your friend in this aspect, so ensure you perform plenty of online research about your favored web hosts before making any commitment.
The Web-Host with the Most, or the Specialized Provider?
There are two schools of thought, and both hold persuasive argument. The first theory is that by choosing a web host that provides the whole spectrum of hosting solutions you have the option to upgrade your hosting package at any time, without the sometimes problematic annoyance of switching to another provider.
Many hosting providers will offer the full range of standard hosting packages, and a variety of options within each separate package. Standard hosting solutions include:
While a lot of companies offer all solutions, some prefer to specialize in only one or two. This will normally be the higher echelon of hosting services, such as VPS or dedicated servers. A specialized hosting provider may be able to offer more advanced, and/or flexible, services in their particular field of expertise. So if you are looking for a higher-end package, this maybe something to consider.
Feet Firmly on the Ground, or Head in the Clouds?
As if deciding on which hosting package you require was not enough, there is also the additional option of going down the route of cloud hosting.
Cloud hosting differs by spreading resources over a network of servers. In theory, this means that if one server crashes, this will not bring your website down with it. Cloud hosting provides a guaranteed 100% up-time and also offers increased payment flexibility and resource scalability.
There are no resource restrictions with cloud hosting. You set up an initial hosting plan with allowances, however, if the site goes over its allotted resource allowance you will simply be charged for any extra resources you have used and website performance will not suffer.
So what’s the catch? Well, cloud hosting is generally more expensive than standard hosting (5-15% on average), and if you do use extra resources these will normally incur a higher charge rate.
The Linux/Apache vs Windows/IIS Dilemma
If you have no predetermined preference, and no technical restriction, you may be unsure which server/platform configuration route to take. To make things a little more mentally taxing, the lines of separation are not as solid as they once were. It is now possible to use an Windows/Linux configuration, and to use Apache in conjunction with Windows-based systems.
Either system can now handle PHP, but only Windows/IIS allows the use of ASP.NET. There will be people that vigorously promote the use of one type of configuration. The felicitous option would be to visit an unaffiliated web hosting forum and seek out the pros and cons for yourself.
Once you have determined your preferred configuration, you will find some hosts provide both services, but many only offer one option. Your host selection could depend on factors such as reputation and/or whether you prefer a system-specialized host.
Best WebHosting Honesty Or Empty Promises and Sales Tactics
Open Book or Closed Doors?
How much information is contained on the web host’s main site? Do they have clear tables and charts that factually report all features of their web hosting packages? Are these actual figures, or simply ‘ticks’ that don’t really tell you anything useful?
A good webhosting company will have nothing to hide. In fact, they will be eager to tell you everything their packages have to offer. If they are confident they are providing a quality service for competitive cost, they won’t need to use any fancy marketing persuasion tactics, or divert your eyes from some of their weaker features. They will clearly show you what they offer and state, ‘this is what we have and what you will pay’.
The Unlimited/Unmetered Illusion
Many web host are now offering unlimited, or unmetered, allowances for certain resources (usually, email accounts, bandwidth, disk space, and MySQL databases). There are 3 reasons why you should not be swayed by these attractive-looking propositions:
1. Many unlimited/unmetered resources are subject to restrictions and are not truly unlimited/unmetered (always check the fine print!)
2. Even if a resource is really unlimited/unmetered, other resources will have restrictions. Due to the interconnected architecture of server resources, the unmetered/unlimited resource is pointless. You could only ever use a certain percentage of an unlimited/unmetered resource before you hit a restriction imposed on a connected resource (i.e. Unlimited bandwidth but restricted CPU allowance).
3. Nearly all web host now use the unlimited/unmetered tactic. It is purely a marketing tactic. As mentioned in the other two points, there will probably either be restrictions buried in small print, and/or full use of unlimited/unmetered resources will be throttled by other limited components.
Hosting Menu: Allowances and Allocations
Price is always a important factor to many customers, but be aware that in many cases a heavily advertised low price is usually subject to commitment to a longer contract.
Some providers will often have special deals. These will normally be discounted offers for various packages, and if you do some research beforehand you can often find discount codes for some hosts.
Another tactic used by some web hosts is to offer free credit for advertising solutions like Google Adwords. Even if one of these offers would be useful to you, don’t be shepherded into choosing a web host based on these offers alone. They should also be providing a quality package, regardless of any bonus offers.
The Main Course
When choosing a web host, it is extremely important to scrutinize the following components and what allowances the web host provides.
- Disk Space
- Data Transfer Allowance/Rate
The amount of resources allocated will depend on the chosen package and type of hosting account. You will need to compare your preferred package with similar alternative offers from other hosts to ensure a provider’s resource allocation is competitive and reasonable.
The Dessert Cart
There are other important factors to consider in a web hosting package, especially if your website is business-orientated, and/or will be administrated/edited by multiple persons.
- Dedicated IP Address
- Private SSL Certificate
- FTP Accounts
- E-Commerce Solutions
- Control Panel
Even if you think you will not require some features immediately, try to consider if they could be relevant in the future. How much will it cost to upgrade to a bigger package? Or how expensive will it be to add on the individual components as and when you need them? Do you have the option to have these resources in the future with your chosen provider? These are important question to ask before you confirm your choice of web host. A lack of insight now could cost you dearly in the future.
Only the Strong Survive
Yes, there are many points to consider when choosing a web host. But it is an important decision. Bad or inferior selection can cripple a websites performance. There is an abundance of available information at your fingertips, if you know where to look. And personal recommendations from satisfied customers are invaluable.
Some of the recommended & top rated Web hosting companies are:
If you have studied the information offered above, you should have a greater understanding of what to look for and what to ignore. Your initial plan should involve deciding what service and resources your website will need now, and what it may require down the line. Planning ahead is crucial.
Once you have a good idea what you need, and have remembered what was said here, you are ready to perform some hosting research, evaluate the contenders, and finally make an informed decision and pick Best Webhosting company for your next project.
This is a guest post by Roko who blogs at Webmasterformat. If you would like to write for ShoutMeLoud, check our guest posting guidelines.
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