Selecting the right host for your websites can seem complicated, especially given the large number of different offers available - for a begginer, it might even seems impossible to make a choice.
You surely want to get the best cheap web hosting for your business, regardless if you want to create your own application from scratch, promote yourself online with your own Wordpress blog, or even to make money online by having a high traffic website selling affiliate products.
But how to choose the right one among all of them - and the list isn't even complete at all:
We asked the community what they think about choosing the right website host, and here are there answers:
Are you satisfied with your current website host? Are you stranded in a long term contract? What really matters to select the right website host? What is the most difficult information to find about a potential website host (speed, server resources, technologies,...)?
I have used dozens of website hosts over the last 10 years and the one thing I pay the most attention to is the quality of their customer support.
Lots of website hosts promise fast loading speeds but very few have amazing support. And this can be a huge problem when your website is down or when you keep having issues you don't know how to fix.
That's why I love my current website host (Kinsta). They provide incredbily fast hosting but also offer amazing support. In fact, most of the time, it only takes them a few minutes to answer me and solve the problems I have. As a busy business owner, this is invaluable.
My number one recommendation for people looking for a reliable hosting partner is to first contact them, ask them a few technical questions, and see how they respond.
Because at the end of the day, the most amazing speeds won't matter if your hosting provider can't help when your website gets hacked or when you have technical problems.
Benjamin Houy, founder of Grow With Less
Grow With Less
Benjamin Houy is the founder of Grow With Less, a marketing training company that helps overwhelmed small business owners get more traffic to their website.
When you’re building your own website, you might not think about your web hosting service too much. After all, to an outsider, it might seem that web hosting services are pretty much the same, right? Wrong. Like any other product or service, you should plan, research and assess carefully before you choose the web host for your website. After all, the reliability of the hosting service is the difference between having your business website working for you 24/7 and one that loses business in downtime.
Here are 4 things to look for when choosing a website hosting company for your business. Some of them are considerations for any business purchase, so make sure you apply the same business sense to your website as you do to the rest of your company.
1. Work out what you need:
Are you a small start-up company, or a big organization? Does your site have an e-commerce function? Choose a hosting provider that will accommodate your business growth and changing needs into the future. Should you be looking for a dedicated server?
2. Customer service:
If your website is down or there are technical issues your business will suffer, so look for a company that provides good support. Being able to chat with someone live is best, or quick email service. Don’t choose a hosting service that only provides a support forum. Glitches of some kind are inevitable, so you need to be able to talk to someone to get it fixed fast!
Look for a hosting provider that will allow you to make changes to your site such as creating new email accounts or changing server settings. Make sure you can access email in a number of different ways including online, so if Outlook crashes you can still check your email from other devices.
4. Read the fine print:
Another business basic but do make sure you check to see exactly what you’re buying and look out for ‘extras’ that you might expect to be part of your package. Email accounts, Email forwarding, and blogs may all be counted as extras. And if the start-up rate looks too good to be true, it probably is. Don’t get stung for basic services as add-ons.
The other fine print issue is to make sure you can take your business elsewhere if you’re not happy with your web hosting service, especially whether you can take your domain name with you if you leave. And as your domain name is your business’ internet identity, that’s pretty important!
Kenny Trinh, CEO of Netbooknews
Anh built his first desktop at the age of 10 and he started coding when he was 14 years old. He knows a thing or two when it comes to finding a good laptop and he aims to share everything he knows through his websites online.
There are a lot of factors to consider when choosing a web host, like pricing, speed and latency to the server. But the most important one to us is how they behave when something goes wrong. There will inevitably be things that go wrong on your server from time to time, but how your host reacts to those issues can be the difference between a minor blip in service, to a complete business disaster.
The big problem is that you can’t really judge a host on this until it happens. Even companies that talk a great game on service can ultimately let you down. So don’t rely on their own on-site reviews, the majority of web hosts will simply not show you bad reviews. Instead look for mentions on forums, social media and external review sites to see what other business owners and developers say about them. If people have been having bad service from this host, that’s where you’ll find out about it.
Sam Orchard, Managing Director, Edge of the Web
Edge of the Web
Sam Orchard began his career as a Developer always staying at the forefront of the latest trends and technologies. Over the past 10 years he’s taken a lead role in all Creative Strategies, from initial project conception, through design, development and on to marketing management.
Last year I had to switch from one hosting provider to another.
The reason to switch was complete underperformance and even breakdowns of the servers my websites were hosted on.
And now I am totally satisfied with my new hoster.
When deciding for another hosting provider I was looking for companies who offer managed cloud servers which allow to adjust ram, ssd capacity and cpu power individually and immediately when it is needed.
Another criteria was that the managed server only contain my websites and nobody else’s to avoid malfunction caused by other webmasters following illegal blackhead techniques.
Due to GDPR Laws also the location of the server was crucial for me.
So I decided for a hosting company which only runs servers in Germany.
Keno Hellmann, CEO at SelbstsaendigKite.de
SelbstsaendigKite.de - WordPress, Blogging & Online Geld verdienen
I am extremely satisfied with my current website host. I use DigitalOcean, a provider of VPS 'droplets' which perform exponentially faster than standard shared hosting plans at a fraction of the cost. I pay $5 a month with no contract for a fractional dedicated server instance that far outperforms any other hosting I've used in the past. Also, there are no contracts required to get to their bottom dollar, it's 100% pay-as-you-go. Learning how to maintain my own tech stack on a VPS was a challenge initially, but once I got the site up and running it has been virtually maintenance-free. In the past, I have been locked into web hosting plans that may have small costs upfront but then renew the following year for substantially higher prices, all the while performing abysmally and limiting what server features I can access. Going with a VPS droplet was the best choice for me and is a solid option for anyone who doesn't need their hand held through the process of setting up a server and site.
Dave Reed, Founder, HomeStudioToday
We have made part of our brand promise the reliable management of websites and microsites, which includes being responsible for web hosting and domain name services for clients nationwide. 10 years ago we started offering hosting on our own dedicated server to web design clients as well as management of VPS, dedicated and cloud servers for organizations of all sizes. We buy our hosting from Knownhost.com and have a long history with them. Their servers are rock-solid and their support, via tickets and email, has consistently afforded us the backend support we need to focus on the website, not the server. I think the most difficult information to find, and the most critical, is personal experience from trusted sources.
When we talk about hosting, that's what we offer. For most web-based businesses, they don't care about RAM or port speed, they care that their website is active, well-positioned in search, and produces a reliable stream of leads and customer experience.
Ryan Turner, Co-Owner, 3PRIME, LLC
Mr. Turner co-founded 3PRIME in 2005 with an emphasis on helping businesses operate effectively online through reliable and effective websites and organic search marketing. Today, 3PRIME is a full-service digital agency with stellar technology credentials and experience offering simple but effective solutions for brick & mortar business as well as online brands and ecommerce companies.
I have used various shared hosting platforms over the past 2 decades for my website clients and have found that as SEO evolves so too must my choice in hosting. Although customer service and response time is very important, especially when dealing with wordpress sites where a client could add a plugin that kills your site and you may need tech support to remove a file, the most important factor is hosting speed. The reason for this is that most hosting companies are pretty similar with up-time, customer service, bandwidth, emails, etc., I have found Site Ground recently is my choice due to the additional tools they offer to increase the page load speed for wordpress sites.
The way I tested speed was to purchase 3 different basic shared hosting accounts with different providers and uploaded the same site, then ran a test on GTmetrix.com.
Michael Goldstein, Owner, VRG Web Design
VRG Web Design
My web host is unconventional. I use Github (Github Pages) for free. I love it because it's simple and no frills...just upload your files and changes are instant.
The support is great. There is no contract and you can leave whenever you get ready to. What matters to me when selecting a host is product support and how fast can they answer my questions.
Price is another concern and how much space and bandwidth do I get per month. You don't want to use up all your space and bandwidth and have yourwebsite shut down in the middle of the month or incur more fees.
The most difficult concern is how great the web host is to their customers. There are thousands of web hosts out there and finding one through a search is confusing and daunting. I have read through an unbelievable amount of reviews over the years and went through at least 10 different web hosts.
Who knows...I might change again...but for now I'm satisfied with my decision and choosing Github.
Elyse Y. Robinson, Change Architect, BeAForeigner Inc.
Now I have started my own software house, mainly working as a digital marketing company, and engaging with multiple peoples to generate their sales.
The question about the website hosting satisfaction is very important to me. I have a very bad experience regarding website hosts from last 1.5 years, I have hosts my different websites on multiple hosts vendors, but the main issue I faced by the hosting organization is that they are not up to date on shared hosting and indeed dedicated hosting is so expensive to manage. I have purchase shared hosting from a Bluehost last month, my software development team had worked on a new datatype of MySQL but unfortunately, Bluehost provided MySQL is not updated.i have contact their agent and he rejected my request to not to update their MYSQL version. and then we have to change our entire code which we have done locally, and our little bit project is also changed due to this stupid issue.
I have hosts my websites on different vendors too, but they have also some big issues as you mention.
in my opinion, the best web hosts are those which have all these factors (speed, server resources, technologies).
Muhammad Zubair Asghar, Managing Director - Careers Mark.
Speed: very compulsory because most of Seo experts earn from 3rd party ads programs like( google ads) and if web host speed is not good it will affect our website badly in search engine ranking and indeed it also cripples the User experience.
Technologies: Updated technologies is very important as I tell share my story above what type of issues we can face because of outdated technology.
Server resources: it is also a very important factor which all good web host should have.
I am a software engineer having experience of more than 7 years as a software developer, I have work with multiple organization in different countries mainly on a software developer position.
I’m coming from the perspective of hosting provider, primarily as an application service provider which is slightly different than the idea of generic “web host”.
Why does this matter? Because we have changed our expectation from website hosting company” to “application service provider”, as a digital society but have not actually taken meaningful steps to adopt vendor/partners for this hosting task with proper understanding of the difference.
A hosting provider is generally expected to provide you with uptime and reasonable if not fantastic speed. What they are not going to provide you with is application awareness, specific application performance (they don’t know why your WordPress version 5 site is so slow), or other deeper business-level performance issues with your application, site-specific needs, or other extenuating circumstances.
After all this preamble, our answer is that speed and performance is one thing, and yes we are pleased. But this is the easy part; it’s a commoditized space and it’s fairly easy to get decent performance from a CPU/RAM/Storage stack point of view from almost anyone now.
What is *far* more important and valuable is the provider’s business-application-performance support. I need them to be able to speak to stack needs, redundancy options, DDoS strategies to ensure uptime in high attack activity, in security management, in platform awareness for the chosen application technology.
Jason, CEO, iTristan Media Group
iTristan Media Group
Having over 20 years of technology development and innovation under his belt, Jason has been at the forefront of supply chain real-time integrations, application process streamlining and digital transformation for Commerce, Finance, Franchise, and the demands of Big Data in SME. With a keen eye to Business Case valuation, Jason looks for all stages of software performance results in short term gains, change culture, workforce effectiveness, and of course, profit.