Let’s get something straight right out of the gate. There are a LOT of website hosting providers out there these days. If you have ever created or managed a website, you’ve probably heard of some of the more well-known web hosts: GoDaddy, Network Solutions, Bluehost, DreamHost, etc. And for each of those, there are probably at least 1,000 smaller lesser-known hosting companies. It’s a crowded market, but not all website hosting providers are created equally.
Great Website Hosting vs. Poor Website Hosting
Here’s a quick list of items that enable a great website hosting provider to stand out from their competition:
- Minimal server downtime. Ideally, your website would never ever be inaccessible. It does happen though…. network issues, denial-of-service attacks, mice chewing on power cables, etc. The difference between a great hosting company and a poor one, is that a great hosting company will have redundancies in place to ensure as little downtime as possible. If your website is inaccessible for more than just a few minutes per month, consider changing your hosting provider.
- Incredible customer service. How many times have you had to call customer service, only to be greeted by an automated system that says something along the lines of, “Thank you for calling. Your call is very important to us. The current wait time is…. 45 minutes.” Hosting companies with great customer service will treat you like a human being, as opposed to just the next caller in their queue. Great hosting companies’ customer service reps will answer the phone right away and quickly help you in an approachable and friendly manner.
- Reduced number of websites per server. This is something that many folks don’t realize… The server where your website resides also stores many other websites for other folks. Think of this situation as being similar to living in an apartment building. If the appropriate number of residents inhabit the spaces in a given apartment building, there probably aren’t any problems. But if too many folks cram into those tiny spaces, hot water starts to become limited, garbage starts piling up, and the smell…. oh, the smell. Website servers work the same way. Too many sites per server have the potential to run that server into the ground. A responsible and reliable website hosting provider will make sure that and appropriate number of websites are allotted to each server.
- Timely website backups. Bad things sometimes happen. You might accidentally delete a file, a bad guy from another part of the world might have found a backdoor into your WordPress site, a file upload might become corrupt as a result of a thunderstorm knocking out your power, and so on, and so on. When determining who your hosting provider will be, select a company that offers website backups. Without a backup plan in place, you’ll risk forcing your website offline longer while issues and errors are repaired.
When selecting a website hosting company, don’t settle. The ideal web host should be able to easily handle all of the items in the list above. If you have questions about website hosting, or if you are interested in Torx’s hosting services, give us a call at 804-577-8679 or fill out the form below.