How to Choose a Web Host

There is a whole lot to consider when choosing a web host, so a business will need to consider their decision carefully. Building and tweaking a site until it’s just right takes a lot of worthwhile effort, but if the site isn’t hosted properly, then it will all be for nothing. Fortunately, in today’s internet savvy world, address providers are no longer the impenetrable, technically overwhelming entities that they used to be, and a business should have no trouble finding a service that will meet all of their needs.

What should a business look for when choosing a web host?

Because every company is different, their online needs will be different as well. There is a huge difference between a freelance photographer’s site, and a site that is engineered for retail, and some service providers are better set up for certain types of sites. In general, though, there are a handful of items to focus on when searching for a service, and they include:

  • Storage and bandwidth – Sites range greatly in the amount of data they contain, so an essential consideration is how much data storage and bandwidth the provider offers. Several GB of data is usually enough for a small or medium size business site, but if there are a lot of images or media files, more may be required. Also, popular sites that contain a lot of images (like retail storefronts) will need to secure enough bandwidth so that they don’t have to pay extra once they run out of data. A strong service provider can help a company calculate their data uploading and downloading needs.
  • Database options – Business sites often have to maintain a trove of information on the backend, and this requires a reliable, intuitive database. MySQL is the standard, though some providers will also offer Oracle, PostsgreSQL, or other database builds.
  • Framework support – Some providers have expert knowledge in certain popular frameworks, like WordPress. Choosing a web host with this knowledge ensures better technical support and easy site updating.
  • E-mail accounts and other features – E-mail accounts and e-mail delivery options ensure the business is always in close contact with its clientele, and promotes a professional appearance. Make sure the service provider offers e-mail as part of their packages.
  • Tech support and site backup – Things sometimes go wrong on the internet, but if the service provider responds quickly and knowledgeably, the damage can be mitigated altogether. Pick a service with deep technical knowledge and a willingness to back up the site, and the company will have a strong safety net.
  • Reliability and speed – It goes without saying that a business will want its site to be up as much as possible, and as fast as possible. This requires a strong network infrastructure and insight into setting up these resources. A faster and reliable site is a must, and should be considered a critical element of any service provider.

These are just a few things to keep in mind when selecting a service, but a business doesn’t have to make their decision without guidance. A reputable service provider will happily outline a company’s options and find the best plan for their site.

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