|Last Update : Thursday 15th November 2018
Building a website is not very difficult nowadays. You don’t even have to know programming or be a “geek”. There are so many tools, like WordPress that allow you to build beautiful, functional websites in minutes, without writing even one line of code. But, as you probably already know – you also need a domain name and a web hosting in order to allow others to access your website. It does not matter if you are building a website for your business, or for your family photos – you still need a place, a company to host your website. fortunately, there are hundreds of web hosting companies you can choose from. The problem is – how can you actually choose the best web hosting company? Well, that’s a tricky question. It all depends on your budget , needs, traffic volume and other factors. I will try and explain everything in this article.
This is probably one of the most important things you must check before choosing a web hosting company to work with. You definitely want your website to work fast as possible. It effects your SEO, the time duration your website visitors stay on the website and more. It’s pretty hard to check which web hosting company is faster, and which one if slower. At the end of the day, it all depends on how many websites the company hosts on one server. When you buy a shared hosting plan, you pretty much “rent” space on a single server, that many other people just like you rent as well. The more websites (“customers”) the company hosts on one server, the slower your website will be. And as you probably already understood, hosting companies try to host as much websites as they can on a single server. This way they save money, and are able to earn much more per customer. Wouldn’t it be great to have a service or a website that will tell you how many websites each hosting company hosts on one server? Well, all this information is of course hidden by the hosting companies. There is no way to know how many websites will be hosted on the same server you host on. The best way to “estimate” and get some information regarding that – is to test how fast websites, that the specific company hosts – load. For sure the best web hosting company must provide you with fast server loading times.
Many times, I visit websites that take up to 10 seconds to load. Most people won’t wait that long, and just hit the “back” button. That means you lose visitors, and in case you sell stuff on your website – customers. That’s really bad !
Do keep in mind that your website’s speed also depends on how heavy the page is. You always want to optimize the code to insure your website loads fast. If you use WordPress for example, you can use Cache plugins. They will improve the loading time dramatically, and also prevent server overload. Even the best web hosting company can’t do anything if your website’s code isn’t written correctly and causes loading delays. If your code is bad and causes loading delays, and on top of that – you chose a bad hosting company – you may realize that this combination is “deadly”. Your search engine SERPs won’t be good, and your loyal, constant visitors may just choose not to visit your website anymore.
If you already have a website hosted somewhere, I highly recommend using services like Pingdom to check how fast your website is. If the results are not too good – consider moving to another, best web hosting company. This can increase your search engine rankings and in most cases- increase your earnings. In some cases you can try and contact your own web hosting company first and see if they can figure it out. Maybe something is wrong with your website, and not with their servers speed.
Let’s say you opened an online store. You would assume that people can visit it and buy from you 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, right? Well, in theory. The reality is, servers do shut down sometimes, it happens !. Your website may go offline for some period of time. When you work with a reliable web hosting company, you can be pretty much sure this “down times” will be rare. The best web hosting companies do guarantee that (most of the times they call it “99.9 up time guarantee”). You can make sure your website is up and running 24/7 using monitoring services. They do cost money, so keep that in mind. Most people won’t need them, especially when working with reliable, best web hosting companies.
If you are running an online business, and make hundreds or thousands dollars a month from it, then a $15/month web hosting plan is probably not too expensive for you. But – if your website does not make that amounts of money, or you just don’t make any money from it – then the price of the hosting plan is probably a big factor. Most people think that check web hosting companies can’t be good. And that’s totally wrong. Since there are so many web hosting companies around and the competition is serious, each one tries to attract you and convince you to become a customer. So many times, they don’t profit from you and offer really good prices. Many of them will do “anything” just so you become their customer for the many years to come. That’s good news of course. Most web hosting companies offer shared hosting plans for anywhere between 1$ to $10 a month. That’s not nearly as expensive as VPS or dedicated servers. Thanks to the low hosting prices (as well as low domain name prices) – more and more people can afford building and maintaining websites. You don’t have to pay hundreds of dollars and rent a server. Just choose a good shared hosting plan from the one of the best hosting companies !
Another important fact worth mentioning is that many of the best hosting companies offer free domain name with the hosting plan purchase. That means you save even more money ! Since both the domain name and hosting is provided by the same company – it’s super easy to link between the two. And of course, it’s always good to have everything in one place – organized and easy to be accessed.
If high volumes of people will visit your website every day, you may consider buying VPS hosting or even renting a dedicated server. Sometimes, big websites like Reddit and Digg link to much smaller websites (most of the times those websites are actually hosted on shared hosting servers), and because of the huge traffic increase – those websites just become unavailable or very slow (this is called “Slashdot effect”). The best hosting companies will be always there with you, trying to solve the problems, and upgrading your hosting plan fast and smoothly. If you choose a hosting company without a good customer support, and your website’s traffic shoots to the top, you may find yourself with a disabled account and website for many hours, or even days ! If you think your website will be expended in the future, choose the best hosting company that will be able to offer you more advanced, bigger hosting plans. It will make everything so much easier for you.
Most of the best hosting companies will provide you with a cPanel, but in some cases- they won’t. That happens mostly with very cheap web hosting companies that try to save as much money as they can. I would recommend any one buying a web hosting plan that comes with a cPanel, it’s considered a standard now days. Just make sure you get it !
Most hosting companies also offer quick install features. That means you will be able to install WordPress and other systems really quickly and simply.
With some web hosting companies you will also receive free advertisement credits (Bing-Yahoo and Google).
If your website visitors come mainly from USA, you definitely want to choose a hosting company that offers servers based in USA. If most of your website visitors come from Canada, It’s best to host your website on a server located in Canada. Most of the best web hosting companies will host your website on servers located in USA. If you want your website to be hosted in other country, you will have to look for a good local web hosting company. Most of the times, it will cost more than what you would pay if you chose a USA servers based web hosting company.
Most hosting companies offer support by phone, chat , online ticket system or all those together. Before choosing the best hosting company – I always recommend trying to reach them out via phone or chat. Make sure you can contact them any time and get the help you need. Many hosting companies offer 24/7 phone support. If you call them, and have to wait 40 minutes until someone talks with you, that’s not a good sign. Do keep in mind, that faster support means more employees, resulting in more expenses and higher hosting plan prices offered to you. I will never work with a company that does not solve my problem or get back to me within 24 hours.
You can also read reviews online, and see what the customer think about the hosting company. Do remember that most of the times, only unsatisfied customers comment online, and not the “happy” ones. Many people forget that and are shocked by the number of complains they found online. As long as the web hosting company is reliable, well known and provided good customer support – you don’t have much to worry about.
I hope this article will help you choose the best web hosting company for your needs. It may look difficult to choose one company to worth with, but actually it’s not. Use our website and comparison tables to save time, and see which are the best web hosting companies.