Once you have decided to take your business online, you start searching for articles and guides for help. They mention three important steps which include domain name registration, selection of a hosting plan and the third, creation of website. Amongst them, selection of hosting provider and the best webhosting plan to suit your needs is a critical step. Let us see how you can easily compare web hosting plans and take a good decision.
Do not worry about tech jargon while you compare web hosting plans
When you visit any web hosting provider’s website, you will see multiple hosting plans. The plan titles would include basic plan, unlimited plan, VPS hosting, SEO hosting, storage in GBs, Bandwidths, number of email ids, C-Panel, CSS-JS Compression, and what not. As an effect, any novice would get completely confused.
I know all these technical terms are very important to understand the web hosting plan and hence the provider. But, this is not needed if this is your first attempt to take your venture online. Once you get some experience, you can get into more technical details. For now focus on simple but important parameters.
Key parameters to compare web hosting plans
Here are some of the key parameters you should look at while selecting good plan for you.
Speed is the key. If any of the web pages from your website do not get loaded quickly, the visitors would turn their back and may not return ever. Make sure that the hosting provider gives you enough information on speed of your website.
Secondly, loading speed of the website is becoming one of the crucial aspects for getting ranked on top of the Google search listing.
Domain registration and transfers
Domain registration and web hosting are two completely different services. But often they are offered together. Check if your hosting provider supports free transfer and migration from the existing ones (if you already have). Some of the providers even give free domain offers for new customers.
Hosting server should be as close as possible to the customers. This improves speed of page loading. Choose the server from the countries where your most of the customers are located.
There is a something called CDN service, if it is available, it can load the contents faster.
Hosting providers have storage of two types as in case of computer. It has RAM and Hard drive. To decide on storage capacity, look at what kind of data you are going to host. Find out details like number of pages, images, files you want to keep on the website, etc.
There is one important term you should check in the specification that is SSD. SSD stands for Solid State Drive. They are faster than conventional hard drives. However, they come at little more price.
Speed, Domain registration and transfers, Location, storage, Server Uptime
Support, Bandwidth, Data backup, Flexibility of up or downsizing, Security
Latest versions of software
draw small icon representing each of the point heading and make an image out of it>
You are aware that when your store is closed for some time, you tend to lose the revenue. Same is the case with a website. Your website should be up and running for 100% of time. Though 100% uptime may be difficult to achieve, providers give 99.5 or more as the uptime. This is an important consideration while selecting a hosting plan.
Encountering technical glitches is very common with websites. If you check, none hosting provider would not claim less than 24×7 support. However, the reality may be different. For the fact, you will not know this unless you sign a plan.
However, the quality of support can be judged by looking at the reviews. Customer testimonials and reviews are excellent indicators for reputation of the hosting provider.
Bandwidth accounts for all the data which transferred to and from the website. Higher bandwidth means more visitors can be on your website at the same instance of time.
Data backup is one of the important consideration for worst times. You may need to look for the backup in case of disk failure or when your website unfortunately gets hacked or is attacked by any unknown virus like ransom ware. Automatic data backup and its frequency also needs to be considered while comparing the hosting plans.
Flexibility of up or down sizing
Please check if your hosting plan is upgradable or not, considering your growth for next couple of years. This way you will ensure that your website infrastructure can be scaled up quickly to accommodate growing number of users.
With tremendous increasing of hacking attacks, a secure hosting infrastructure is the key requirement. Your web hosting should be protected against brute-force attack, DDOS attack and should have antivirus installed.
Latest versions of software
You should choose hosting provider which is adopting latest versions of technology. Your website can run on best of the technology. Hence, with latest security patches your website has a stronger protection.
Choosing the right web hosting plan for you
You need not have to be a pro in selecting a hosting plan to start your online journey. If you consider the points discussed here like speed, security, data backup, latest versions of software etc., you will be able to choose web hosting plan at the best available price.