One of the most important factors for the success of a website or blog is to select the right web hosting company. It is essential to choose the right host or all your hard work might go in vain and even worse, lost! There are thousands of hosting service providers and one of the most crucial questions for any webmaster is to select the right host. Below are 10 points to guide you on selecting the right hosting company:
1. Reliability: The first and foremost criteria in selecting a host is the reliability of the company. The worst scenario for a webmaster is that the host suddenly shuts down one night and all your data and hard work is lost in vain. To avoid such situations, it is important to always opt for reputed and reliable hosting service providers.
2. Price: The second most important factor is the price as it needs to suit your planned budget. The price differs as per the contract length and the hosting resources in most hosts. So, the right ploy is to plan both of them accordingly. For a new webmaster, I would advise you to go for 12 month contract and to start with a basic plan for the web host. As your website grows, you can upgrade your plan and opt for longer contract terms.
3. Uptime: Uptime of a web host is one of the most important that should be taken into consideration while selecting a web hosting company. If your website is down most of the time, then it will never be able to get established properly. So, opt for a hosting which has an uptime of 99.8% at the minimum.
4. Bandwidth: Bandwidth is a deciding factor if your website eats up a lot of bandwidth. Bandwidth is calculated monthly and it is the total amount of data transfer that takes places from your website. Many reputed web hosts provide unlimited bandwidth nowadays and it is advisable to opt for them.
5. Space: Does the hosting provider have enough space for your needs? If you use a lot of static objects such as images and files in your website then it is advisable to go for web hosts with high disk space if not unlimited.
6. Speed: Speed is mostly ignored while choosing a web hosting company but very few realize that it is one of the most important factors in the growth of a website. Website visitors leave a slow loading site a lot faster compared to a fast loading website. Even Google and other search engines take website speed into consideration. So, you should always select a fast web host instead of a low loading one.
7. Control Panel: Control Panel is important for administering the hosting account and maintaining it. cPanel is the hosting panel that we recommend due to its ease of use and features.
8. Installed Packages: If you are planning to use a definite script for your website, then it is important to check the requirements of the script. PHP5, MySQL, GD Library, CGI support etc. are some of the basic requirements for most scripts. Many have their custom requirements too and so make sure that the host supports all the requirements of your script.
9. Features: It is always better to opt for hosts which provides additional features. So, read about all the features and benefits of the web host before signing up with them.
10. Email: If you need email for the domain then it is advisable to make sure that the web hosting company supports email accounts and enabled access to POP and IMAP Email. A nice webmail client like RoundCube or Horde helps in reading the emails from inside your hosting panel.
Hope that the above points would help you in selecting the right hosting company.