Building a website that will be live on the Web is something that should be planned carefully. At this moment you are probably at a point of starting your first website. As a recap of the article How to Start a Website, you will need at least these two things to build a website – a domain name and a web host. In this article, I will be sharing common but essential tips on how to choose a web host or a web hosting service.
Below are several criteria that you might consider in choosing a web host.
- Reliability and speed of access – You should search for a web host that would be reliable and fast, it should guarantee its uptime (the time when it is working). Expect for a minimum uptime of 99%. This uptime is the percentage that it is operating in a year – ideally means functioning well 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
- Data Transfer and Bandwidth - Basically measured in bandwidth per month. Data transfer which is most of the time specified to as traffic or bandwidth is the amount of data transmitted from your website to visitors browsing your site.
- Disk Space – This is the web space where you will actually put all files for your website. All files such as scripts, programs, documents, images, music, videos, and extra files associated to your website will be located on this disk space which is accessible over the Internet.
- Support for Multiple Script and Language such as PHP, Perl, Java, Ruby, ASP, MySQL, plus Telnet, SSH, .htaccess – These are programs, scripts and languages that you or related programs might use in building your website. As a beginner, you will not use or edit these various types of codes and scripts, but for future development of your website, consider looking for these features from a web host service.
- Server and Operating System – A UNIX system running Apache server or a Windows server are two popularly used on most web hosts today. This aspect can be decided by the language that you will use to write your site’s program. If you will be using ASP then you should choose Windows, otherwise you can choose a UNIX-based server for PHP, Perl, Java and the likes.
- Technical Support – Since you’re paying on a service, technical support should be available 24/7. You will be surprised at how often you might need their help when encountering problems on your website. Consider also the speed of response and technical competitiveness of their support.
- Control Panel – The Control Panel, also known as cPanel, allows you to manage such as add, remove, copy, paste, move, or edit the different pieces of your web account yourself. In general, and at the very minimum, it should allow you to do things like manage files and folders, deal with your email addresses, and change passwords for your account.
- Email, Mail Forwarding, POP3, Auto responders - You would probably want to have email addresses on your own domain, like [email protected], or [email protected] etc.
- SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) – SSL provides communication security over the Internet. This feature normally is offered with a higher priced package or may include additional charges. You might need this if you want to collect important credentials or online payments on your site.
- Multiple Domain Hosting and Subdomains - This criterion is optional and for those who are planning of selling web space or having multiple domains or subdomains hosted in your account.
- Reseller or Real Hosting – A lot of web hosting company on the web today either own or lease their web servers. Several of these web hosts are in fact resellers for bigger web hosting company. Both type of web hosting companies offer good quality on hosting a website, as long as they also meet the other criterion.
- Price – The cost of service. You can compare prices by looking on all offered services of web hosting companies out there. Most of the time, web hosting services are priced per month or per year.
- Web Host’s Reviews – You probably want to listen to what other customers may say to these web hosts. Their experience on the services offered by their web hosts might help you decide on choosing right hosting provider for you.
These features are a number of basic criteria that you might consider in choosing your web host. Whatever you’re purpose in establishing a website, may it be for your hobby, for blog, or for business, you should try to consider these in choosing the right web host for your website. Having a desirable web host will highly contribute to the success of your website.
List of Popular Web Hosting Service Provider
- HostGator – use our Coupon Code: BLOGSDB25OFF to get 25% OFF on your purchase
- Fat Cow
- Network Solutions
These are only a few from tons of web hosting providers on the Internet today. You may choose from the above list or research and discover more web host from around the globe. However, make sure to keep an eye on the criteria above, and be guided in choosing the perfect web host for you.