Your startup needs a website. It’s your portal to the outside world.
Customers, clients, and potential investors alike can find out everything they need to know about your business from your website. This can all go wrong if your web hosting isn’t up to scratch.
Why would a potential client stick around if your site is too slow to load? Chances are, they wouldn’t. That’s why it’s so important to choose the right web host.
We’re going to help you do just that. Here’s everything you need to help you choose the right business web hosting service for your company.
Determine The Kind of Hosting You Need
There are three types of web hosting available for business websites – shared hosting, virtual private servers (VPS), and dedicated server hosting.
They have their own pros and cons. The first consideration you need to make, if you’re trying to determine the kind of hosting you need, is to work out what your budget is.
The cheapest form of hosting, shared hosting, means your site will share its resources with various other websites. You’ll have restricted amounts of bandwidth and space, but it isn’t a bad option if your traffic levels are reasonable at this stage.
Other forms of hosting, like a VPS or a dedicated server, give you more control. These hosting solutions are similar, but a VPS will mean your server is hosted on the same hardware as others.
For most businesses, you won’t really be able to tell the difference, unless you have significant amounts of traffic or need a lot of space. Most businesses, for a reasonable cost, are probably going to choose between a VPS or shared hosting.
To help you decide between them, check out this guide on whether shared hosting or a VPS is the best for your business.
Consider Business Customer Support
Before you choose your business hosting, you should investigate the customer service options available to you.
If your site goes down in the middle of the night, can you be on the phone with somebody to fix the problem? Does the host offer other forms of support, such as live chat channels or a 24/7 e-mail helpdesk?
Businesses need quick support. If you choose a host that doesn’t offer quick customer support to resolve issues that occur, it could cost you money, and you should look elsewhere.
You might want to outsource your support needs to somebody else. If you’re wondering whether hiring a managed IT service business to deal with your IT is the best way to go, these 7 reasons should help you make your decision.
What Sort of Features Do You Require
We’ve already mentioned the different types of hosting available for business customers, but it doesn’t always come down to price or speed.
You may have special requirements that need to be met by a web host. You need to consider how large your site is and the sort of traffic your site is likely to have in a month to choose the right package, but there are other considerations.
How will your web host store your data? You should look at whether your host will use SSD drives, as this will help improve the speed of your web pages for your users.
Businesses need to consider their own particular service requirements, too. Do you need your own e-mail hosting services? You’ll want to choose a host who can do that safely, with anti-virus and spam protection built in.
Will your host take care of the purchase of your business domain name? If not, you’ll need to arrange that for yourself.
One last feature to consider is your site backups. What happens if you lose your site data? Will your host offer automatic backups of your server content?
It may cost you a little bit extra, but choosing a host that offers a backup solution included can offer peace of mind unless you want to risk losing everything should a cyber attack occur.
Speed and Server Location
Speed is critical. Nearly half of all web visitors will click off your website if it takes 3 seconds or longer to load.
Three seconds isn’t much, so you need to optimize your site as much as possible. One way to do that is to host your site as close to your users as possible.
It doesn’t make sense to host your website on the West Coast if your target audience is in Germany, for instance. The extra time it takes for data to travel might be the extra couple of hundred milliseconds that make all the difference.
If your business serves a localized area, such as South America, you’ll want to pick a web hosting provider close to that location, such as these hosting web Chile services.
Of course, there are other ways to speed up your site, and we’ve already touched on a few. Here are 15 other tips you could use to make your business site load as quickly as possible.
Existing Customer Reviews
You’re in business, so you already know how important your reputation is. It’s the same for the web host you choose.
Look at any testimonials the host themselves offer with a pinch of salt. These are no doubt hyped to sell their services, and won’t always reflect the clearest picture of their quality.
Use search engines and business listings to get a better idea. If the web host is well known, it’s likely they’ll have a good number of customer reviews to be able to get a good picture of how the business operates.
If the overwhelming response is negative, don’t take the risk. Look at other hosts and find one with a better reputation to save your business money and time in the future.
Security and Uptime Guarantees
You need your site to be as secure as possible. If you’re looking at shared hosting, web hosts should offer some kind of guarantees for your data.
They should make their cybersecurity response policies clear on their website. If they don’t, ask your host what they will do if they suffer a cyber attack that slows down your site or causes data loss.
These may well form part of a greater uptime guarantee your site host offers. You don’t want your site to go down at random because of poor infrastructure. Good web hosting services will usually offer 99% or higher uptime based on past experiences.
Business hosts may offer service level agreements (SLAs) that put this on a much more formal footing. See if your chosen web host provider will guarantee your site security or uptime with a formal agreement like this, to give you additional peace of mind.
Find The Right Business Web Hosting for Your Startup
Choosing the right business web hosting for your startup business will depend entirely on your requirements.
Need something basic? Shared hosting will be fine, as long as you have the bandwidth and space you need. Something a little more intensive will require a VPS or a dedicated server.
Just don’t forget to check server location, reviews, and site speeds, as well as a host’s business services, such as their customer service and uptime guarantees. You want to make sure you get the best value for your money.
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