Face it, a web site is in your future and you are going to need a web hosting provider. The problem is that there is no such thing as the universal ideal web hosting provider. However, there are really only 5 things that matter when choosing a provider:
- Support – if they are not there 24/7/365 move on. A good test is to email the provider and see how quickly they respond. Try asking the sales department a question about their product. If sales is slow to respond, do you think technical support will be any better?
- Price – this is a two-edged sword. Sure we all want that unbeatable price, but the better criteria is: is the price reasonable for the service provided.
- Guarantee – find a provider that offers at least a 30 day money back guarantee policy.
- Platforms and Applications – basically your choice of platform will come down to using either a Linux or Windows server. If your website is based on .ASP technology, then you must have a Windows host, otherwise go with the platform that supports the back-end applications your web site uses.
- Scalability, Reliability & Security – you want to look for a provider that makes it easy to upgrade, to add bandwidth, disk space and email accounts as your web site’s traffic grows. You want a provider that will guarantee their up-time. A proven up-time guarantee means that your site will be there when your clients try to view it, so ask for one. Finally, you want a provider that clearly states they have spam and virus filtering already installed and this feature is provided to all web sites. After all prevention is less painful than the cure.