Your hosting provider speaks volumes about your website.
It will determine how fast your site loads, how quickly you handle downtimes, and how you present your brand to the online world.
And if you don’t get it right, you hurt your brand’s reputation — not to mention your ROI.
But how do you get started with choosing a hosting plan? And how do you know if you’re with a reliable web host?
There are several factors to consider, such as speed, support, cybersecurity, and of course, pricing.
Let’s get into more detail to help you establish a head-turning online presence in no time.
9 Pro-Tips to Choosing the Right Hosting Plan for Your Website
Learn your hosting types
If you have the faintest idea about web hosting, that’s a good start. But if you want the best hosting plan for your business website, you’ll need to have strong background knowledge of it.
In a nutshell, your website needs a web host that’ll store all its data to its servers round-the-clock. Every time a user visits your site, their browser sends a request to your web host’s server. The server will then pull up your site and display it on the user’s end.
Web hosting is categorised into:
Shared hosting is when a website shares server storage with other people’s websites. It’s a popular hosting option among individuals and small businesses.
Why? Because of the affordable price.
Since you’re sharing the server space with hundreds of other websites, you’re also sharing the cost. With shared hosting, you get your site up and running without the hefty price.
But since you’re sharing resources with other websites, you’re also at their mercy. A high-traffic site can have an adverse effect on your site’s performance.
To avoid this, get a reliable hosting provider that won’t load up websites more than a single server can handle.
A dedicated server means you get an entire physical server to yourself. No other websites hogging resources. No other sites pulling your site performance down.
Dedicated server hosting is the highest level of hosting you can get for your business website. It also costs a fortune, so make sure you get the most out of it.
Use a dedicated server if your brand has exponentially gained a ton of traffic online. Otherwise, you might want to stick to less powerful plans in the meantime.
Gauge your website’s needs
Now that you know your server types, you now have a good understanding of which hosting type caters to your needs.
The question is: what does your website need?
How many site visitors do you expect? Will your website allow users to upload high-quality multimedia content?
For these aspects, you may want to consider a hosting plan that offers high bandwidth and huge disk storage.
By knowing your website’s needs, you get a better grasp of the specifications you’ll want from your hosting.
Aside from bandwidth and disk storage, you’ll also want to check out the number of sites and email accounts you can host with your plan.
If you’re unsure what hosting service best meets your needs, don’t hesitate to contact support.
Make uptime a priority
It’s a given to choose a hosting provider that’ll always keep your website up and running.
Many web hosts offer a 99% uptime guarantee. But even a 99% uptime means having to suffer 7 hours of downtime a month and 3.65 days a year. That’s enough time to lose customer trust and bring down your search engine rankings.
When choosing a web host, make sure it delivers 99.9% to 100% uptime.
Ensure reliable customer support
Your website can encounter problems at any time. And when you’re not adept with the technicalities, it’s best to have 24/7 customer support to rely on.
Make sure your hosting provider offers easy access to phone, email, and chat support. Observe how they handle enquiries firsthand to know if they meet your expectations.
Getting immediate support goes a long way in minimising downtime and resuming business operations ASAP.
Look for cybersecurity features
You won’t fully grasp the extent of a cyberattack until it happens to you. In fact, small businesses lose a whopping $120,000 to $1.24 million to damages — and lose customer confidence in the process.
Strengthening your website cybersecurity isn’t up for discussion. It’s a must.
Find a web host that offers robust security features along with your hosting.
Pro-tip: Look for a web hosting plan with protection for Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks, which cause site and email outages.
Choose a plan that offers regular backups
With cybercriminals on the loose, your website will always be at risk for an attack. You’ll need to be ready for worst–case scenarios, like hackers messing with your site — or worse, deleting it.
For this, you’ll need a hosting provider that offers file backups of your website. This way, you’ll always have something to pull up in case your site runs into trouble.
Keep SEO in mind
Finding a hosting provider for your website isn’t enough to get it out there. You’ll need to optimise it for search engines if you want it to better reach your target audience.
This is when search engine optimisation (SEO) comes into the picture.
Many top-tier web hosts offer managed SEO services to complement their hosting plans. This cuts down employment costs and gives you more time to spend managing your business.
Pick the plan with a reasonable price
Price is always a major factor when considering a service. But opting for the cheapest option doesn’t mean you’ll save bigger bucks.
Once you find a fitting hosting plan for your business, see if it comes with a reasonable price. Don’t skimp on costs, but also make sure the price is worth the offer.
Remember: you get what you pay for. So it’s best to settle for a hosting plan with a higher price than a cheap one that’s bound to cost you more in the future.
Check out customer reviews
While hunting for web hosts, you’ll likely face prospects that claim to deliver all the good stuff. The only way to dodge their false promises is to scour customer reviews.
It only takes a quick Google search to figure out what customers say about a certain web host. A word of warning, though. Make sure you’re looking at reviews that come from actual customers and not from the company itself.
Get ready to launch
Choosing a hosting plan can be tricky. But when you get to know the ropes of hosting, you’re one step closer to a promising online presence that’s sure to win customers.