Choosing Web Hosting
You could literally go crazy trying to compare all of the hundreds of hosting
plans and providers on the market. To narrow down your options, talk to friends
and business associates who have professional web sites.
Ask them which providers they use or recommend. A number of Internet sites, such
as CNET and Epinions, allow users to share their thoughts about web hosting
companies, so their input could be valuable in your search also.
Once you've found a manageable number of potential providers, you can begin
to compare plans. Here are a few things you should focus on:
* Money Back Guarantee - Many providers offer a 30-Day money back guarantee so
that you can try their service risk free. Always look for this option so you
don't get stuck with a service you're unhappy with.
* Storage Space - This is the amount of room you will have for your site. Of
course, you don't want to pay for room you don't need, but you also want room to
grow. If you've a small site in mind 10-15 MB should be sufficient to begin
* Bandwidth/Data Transfer - Data transfer (bandwidth usage) refers to how much
data/information is sent to or received from your hosting account on the server
over a specified period of time. Usually it is measured monthly.
More the visitors to your site, more bandwidth you'll require. Small sites
usually suffice with 1 GB/month.
* Site Speed - This is very important factor while considering a hosting
service. This will decide how fast
your site loads when some one visits your site. Online surfers are extremely
busy, so you need a fast server. Or else they will leave your site even before
it gets loaded!
You may ask your hosting provider to provide you with a list of their client's
sites (if they can) for checking
their speed. Here's a good tool to check a site's speed: http://www.hostpulse.com/app/networktools/ping.asp
* Customer Service - You strive to provide exceptional service and you should
expect nothing less from your web hosting company. Look for multiple methods of
receiving service, such as a toll-free phone number or live chat. You may also
want to consider testing their response time in advance.
* Uptime Guarantee - Your web site is like your store. If your store is closed,
you aren't making any money. The same is true if your web site is down. You
should only choose a plan that provides at least a 99% uptime guarantee.
* Cost - Price should also be a deciding factor. Cheaper is not always better,
but there are reasonable rates for quality hosting available if you do your
by Vishal P. Rao
Never pay for a full year of service upfront, though you are likely to pay less
in the long run. You have to take into consideration their after sales service
Also, as far as possible, try to choose a hosting company that allows easy
upgrade/downgrade between plans. This way you can trim down your costs to the
About the Author:
Vishal P. Rao is the editor of Home Based Business Opportunities - A
website dedicated to opportunities, ideas and resources to help you start a home
based business. Visit him at:
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