One of the biggest mistakes that website owners make is not choosing the right hosting for their site. You can build the best site in your sector. You can offer products and services that should fly off the virtual shelves. None of this matters at all if you get your web hosting wrong.
Using the wrong hosting service could simply make your site invisible and it can prevent it from reaching its full potential. And, if your prospective customers can’t access your site then they can’t do what you need them to do. They can’t make a purchase, click on an ad or sign up to your newsletter.
The first thing you should look at is the host’s ‘uptime’ stats. This will usually be shown as a percentage (i.e. 99%) that describes their previous performance. Here, for example, the company had their hosted sites online 99% of the time. 1% of the time their sites would not have been available on the web. There are website uptime monitoring sites, like UptimeGenie, that offer monitoring for free.
Customer support is also vital. If you are running your own business then you already know that you need to be responsive to your customer needs. If you have a hosting problem then you should expect the same levels of service. Look for 24/7 support wherever possible.
A lot of people marketing a site for the first time will look at a free hosting package. Bear in mind here that free hosting will come with limitations. You may not be able to do everything you want with your site and you will probably have to run adverts on it.
Finally, you need to ensure that the hosting company can handle your site needs — both now and into the future. You need to make sure that they can host your site in the first place, that you get enough space for it to function and sufficient bandwidth to keep it running smoothly.
As with most business purchases you get what you pay for here. But, don’t assume that this means signing up to the most expensive plan. Most reliable hosting companies will allow you to upgrade your hosting plan as your site grows.