- Articles & Inspirations
- Wednesday, 27th Mar, 2013
Having your websites hacked is one of the worst feelings in the world. Have you ever experienced your websites gone down from hack attacks? Or your web server is frequently went down for maintenance? Or have you experienced that your website databases are corrupted and goes down at 3am, you try to call your web host to restore the databases for you, but they are not be able to respond immediately?
Photograph courtesy of Ian L.
Choosing a good web host is extremely important. A site that is frequently down will lose a lot of visitors. If someone find your website on the search engine and try to visit your site but find that it is down, he may simply go down the list to find another website.
In this article, we are going to discuss what are the important things to consider when you look for a web host.
A server uptime should be around 99.5%. This is the amount of time the servier is functioning and users, search engines’ crawler can access it no problem. Server uptime is important in SEO perspective, because as we know that search engine likes Google does take site’s loading speed and accessibility into account when ranking it. So, make sure you are choosing a good web host that offers a high percentage of uptime to guarantee that your website will be online more than its offline.
Next step is to look at the backend server software offered on the host. If running your website requires PHP languages, Perl or MySQL supports then go for Unix (Linux). However, if your website requiresASP or ASP.NET then you definitely go for Window Server. Don’t be caught in a payment when you can’t use your host to the fullest extent; find a great hosting company that continually updates their backend.
Bandwidth is the amount od data transferred from your site to visitors when they browse your site. On the average, a medium-sized of website use up to 5 GB of traffic a month. Some web hosting company offer “unlimited bandwidth“. Please be careful with this kind of offers, the hosting company has to pay for the bandwidth, if you consume a lot of it, they will not silently bear your costs. So, give your contract a thorough study.
For the same reason as bandwidth, web hosting company make quite generous promises regarding disc space, you should watch out also for the “unlimited disk space shceme“. Many new websites use less than 30 MB of space. However, if you are planning to upload rich content such as audio, video and high resolution images, the amount will probably be bigger. So even if you are provided with a host that tempts you with unlimited space, be aware that you are unlikely to use that space, so don’t let the unlimited space be too big a factor in your consideration when comparing with other web hosts.
Control panel is a administrator’s panel that allows you to manage different aspects of your web account yourself. Typically, it allows you to do things like add, delete, and manage your email addresses, and change passwords for your account. My advice is you should not sign up for a web host where you have to go through their technical support each time when you want to change a password, add, delete somethings. Such chores are common maintenance chores that every webmaster performs time and time again, and it would be a great hassle if you had to wait for their technical support to make the changes for you.
Many web hosting company claims their support operates 24/7. However, this is often an exaggeration. Try to test them out by sending email at midnight, sataurday night, sunday morning or public holiday, and see how quick they respond. Apart from that, check to see if they are technically competent. You wouldn’t want to sign up for a host that is run by a bunch of salesmen who only know how to sell and not fix problems.
You should always check out what others have say about the web host that you are going to purchase their package. Read the reviews, analyze it and evaluate carefully. Some glowing reviews may come from people working for the web hosting company itself, disguised as multiple satisfied customers. Likewise, negative reviews of a particular host can sometimes come from unscrupulous competitors of that host.
When looking to host your new websites, choosing a web hosting service and plan is a NOT a simple task. Look closely at how your guarantee is defined and if your host will honor it. Most guarantees are prorated and are often worthless.