Choosing a Web Hosting Provider Guide for Newbies

Choosing a Web Hosting Provider Guide for Newbies

In the previous article, we have discussed the importance of security, reliability and compatibility issue when choosing a web hosting provider. Today we will discuss the price value issue and customer support choice.

Compare prices and what various providers offer for the amount of money you can afford to pay currently. Some webmasters blindly choose providers basing exclusively on cheap prices. This is totally wrong. Some major providers offer really cheap prices, because they started out like domain name registrars and developed a large clientele selling domain names. Now they're expanding and selling cheap hosting to their clients. These companies may have a large number of services you can buy from one user account - domain names, web hosting, reseller programs, etc. Nevertheless, don't get carried away by price. You haven't reached the end of your check list yet. In many cases, long-term contracts provide a substantial discount, as compared to short term no-contract services. In case you are not so sure about the long-term commitment, consider a one month subscription to setup and see if this particular plan and provider work for you.

Leave some room for further growth. You choose the plan according to your current needs. That's fine. But it is wise to choose a plan that allows upgrading some features, like disk space and bandwidth, individually, without upgrading the plan itself. Your needs are likely to change, because why else build a website without expecting it to grow? Look for so-called scalable plans and plans that are easy to upgrade or downgrade without additional hassle and mess. Check and see if the account settings are preserved when a user upgrades the plan.

Pay attention to how many e-mail account go with your hosting plan. It doesn't matter that now you only need one e-mail address. It is always nice to be able to create as many e-mail addresses as you need. Whereas, some projects do not require multiple e-mails, there are projects that have a critical need for them.

The golden rule: always investigate support and customer service options. You must know whether the hosting they provide is managed or unmanaged, or self-managed as some call it. Whereas, some companies offer 24/7 support that is ready to assist you in migrating, and all that service is included in their basic plans; other companies state clearly that the service they provide is unmanaged, and the number of issues they can address is quite limited. There is also a group of providers that are very vague in this - you are supposed to have 24/7 support, but when you start looking at Contact Us page, there is no chat, phone, forum, blog option to reach them, except for the email. This will make you look for user feedback. Most providers are on the market long enough to generate positive or negative feedback for their support service.

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