How do we decide if a web host is good? Do bandwidth and disk storage features still matter these days? Which type of hosting service should you go with? In this article, we will get these questions answered with the following walk-through and a 15-point checklist.
How to choose a web hosting service?
In brief –
- Know your hosting needs.
- Investigate on host reliability and uptime guarantees.
- Study web host upgrading options.
- Check all hosting features (such as number of addon domains allowed) based on your needs.
- Check prices on both sign up and renewal.
- Check hosting control panel.
- Read hosting company’s ToS to find out more about account suspension and server usage policy.
- Other supporting features (ie. site backup, environmental friendliness, etc)
Knowing Your Hosting Needs
You can never get the right web host without knowing what you need. So before you go any further – put everything aside (including this guide you are reading) and think thoroughly on your own needs.
- What kind of website are you building?
- Do you want something common (a WordPress blog, for example)?
- Do you need Windows applications?
- Do you need a special version of software (ie. PHP)?
- Does your website need special software?
- How big (or small) can the web traffic volume go?
These are some of the basic questions you need to answer for yourself.
Have a quick picture of what you want to do with your website now. Figure what happens next for the next 12 months.
If you are totally new…
For newbies, the no-brainer rule is to always start small with a good shared hosting account.
A shared hosting account is cheap, easy to maintain, and sufficient for most new sites. Plus, you can always upgrade to VPS or dedicated hosting in the later stage when your site grows bigger.