Some common complaints by business owners revolve around poor customer service, issues with website downtime and nasty hidden costs. Negotiating your way through the myriad of web hosting companies needn’t be complicated if you know what criteria to look out for.
Unfortunately, the failings of a web hosting company are often only revealed when something goes wrong. A responsive hosting provider will at a minimum offer support via email, and preferably by phone as well.
On average, good web hosting companies will commit to a 99.7 percent server uptime. These providers also provide high speed internet connections and conduct frequent data backups at no extra charge. A client must also be satisfied that the web hosting company is well-established, having preferably been in existence for more than 3 or 5 years.
Although always a factor, it is not wise to sign up for either the cheapest or the most expensive package. Free web hosting always comes at a price. This may be in the form of certain restrictions, complete lack of support (for obvious reasons) or advertisements displayed on your website. It is also more suited for personal or experimental websites. Decent web hosting packages can be obtained from around R50 and upwards per month.
Web hosting security requirements are crucial these days. If, for example, you have a WordPress powered website, it will require a high level of website security to prevent online attacks. Due to the popularity of content management systems like WordPress, attacks over the last couple of years have increased exponentially. You are therefore better off choosing a hosting company who is serious about securing your website. Some companies, like Web Guru, will offer product specific solutions like WordPress hosting with security in mind.
An easy to use interface like cPanel will allow you to manage your own email accounts, databases and domains with ease so that you don’t have to rely on your provider to get simple tasks done.
A web hosting company that meets the above criteria and offers additional complementary online services is worth considering as a hosting partner. The bottom line is to have a clear understanding of your online requirements before you choose a hosting partner and to check for any hidden costs.
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