Beginner’s Guide to Finding a Reliable Web Host
Finding that perfect web hosting provider can be a real tough thing, especially for the young turks of the web designing industry who are overwhelmed by the web hosting market flooded with a deluge of vendors each saying, ‘I am the best, buy from me’. Now when you don’t know how the hosting you buy would turn out to be, you should at least know the basic things you should expect from your vendor and what are the characteristics that distinguish the reliable ones from time wasters. The intention of this post is to offer you some insight into this aspect so that your job of finding a dependable web host becomes easier.
Uptime has got direct relevance to how long and how often your website will be online and can be accessed by your visitors. When you own a website, and more so when a commercial one, it becomes crucial that the service given by your website hosting company be available constantly. Apart from visitors being able to view your website when they want to, you too should be able to update your website anytime you want to.
As everyone knows, disk space is used for saving graphics, files, and HTML of your website. The volume of space is mostly measured in gigabytes. If you don’t have a clear idea regarding the size of the space you need, then the best option would be to opt for a company that offers unlimited server space.
How much data will your website’s visitors access throughout an entire month? It is called bandwidth, and just like disc space, the bandwidth offered by a web hosting company too is measured in gigabytes. Again, go for unlimited bandwidth if you’ve no idea how much you’ll consume in a given month.
In order to be able to manage your website and control precisely what to put on it, you need to have a hosting interface that is both, easy and efficient to use. In hosting parlance, this interface is called control panel. Your hosting should offer you a good web hosting control panel like cPanel or some other user-friendly alternative.
Also you need to be sure what level of hosting will be good for you – shared, VPS or dedicated. Usually for beginners, shared hosting would suffice but in case your requirements are too large to be taken care of by shared hosting, then you should go for VPS or virtual private server. Since VPS would be costlier than shared hosting, you need to be even more careful while fixing on your vendor. So, make sure to go through review sites specifically dedicated to VPS hosting or even low cost VPS hosting if you are looking for an affordable VPS option.
You may also want to have some features that would be essential to the specific requirements of your project. For example, if you have an eCommerce site, you need to allow your customers to order and pay online by integrating shopping, payment gateway, etc. and hence your host should support these as well. Similarly, online security also becomes highly important for eCommerce site and many other projects. In such cases, your hosting vendor should also be able to offer you SSL and other security features.