Every website owner always faces the question – which hosting to choose. In fact, it doesn't matter whether resource was made up using a CMS - WordPress or Joomla, or site is a symbiotic example of front-end and back-end programming using one of the popular OOPL. In both cases you need to have a server, so you will be able to upload and store your information there.
To say clear: hosting is like a home (storage) for your site, and the domain is its unique address. To understand how to choose proper hosting, consider number of parameters: these are your individual needs - how many sites you plan to host, how many visitors you are expecting, the amount of required disk space, and also, what are your price expectations. To make the right choice, you should consider about different specifics of hostings:
Virtual (shared web hosting);
Suitable for simple tasks. For example, one small resource such as a single-page site. This is the cheapest option with limited functionality and small amount of disk space.
Virtual Dedicated Server, same as Virtual Private Server (VPS);
VPS provides enough memory space and CPU power. In fact, you are renting a part of a bigger server.
Dedicated server is such kind of the service when the client receives a physical server at his disposal for a certain period of time. This is the best option for online stores and other resources with high traffic.
Reliability of data center directly affects quality of provided services and stability of your resource. There are 4 levels of reliability according to the Uptime Institute:
- Tier I – the simplest solution with minimal amount of equipment. But when service is under maintenance, the server completely stops it's functioning, and there is no possibility for backing up.
- Tier II – is focused on the fast starting of working processes. But in this case, it provides option for backing up and technical support.
- Tier III и Tier IV – are using the most reliable equipment, so these types are suitable for working with heavily loaded resources.
So what parameters are indicating that the web-host provides qualified services?
Along with standard services that the provider company should care about, there are some features that only large and reliable suppliers can offer:
Good technical support available 24/7.
Domain name registered 5 or more years ago.
Large client list - over 5,000 of users.
Experience of hosting sites for at least 7 years.
Own implemented system of payments, and site management.
Official registration – banking account details of the legal entity, physical address specified, etc..
Customer loyalty - large number of positive reviews on specialized resources.
Availability of at least 200 servers.
Even at this point, most of the companies will be dropped out. Among the remaining offerings, you should choose the one that suits you best. Hoster has to be appropriate to your resource. Therefore, it is very important to consider and formulate your key needs for the resource at the early stage. For example, a personal blog or a storage library for personal use will have low traffic level, and the number of visitors per day will differ significantly from, for example, an online store, where 1000 to 10,000 daily visitors are absolutely normal. Freezing pages, long loading time, malfunctioning - all these factors can completely destroy a customer-oriented business.
In addition to reducing the loyalty of target audience, unstable hosting services also entail another problem - blocking by main search engines such as Google and Yahoo. It is impossible for internet-resource to achieve high traffic level without being indexed by search engines.
What kind of hosting is preferable for the site, free or paid, depends on the specifics of the resource. For understanding what option to look for, you should know key features of both types.
Possible server instability.
Limited amount of disk space.
Undesirable advertising is quite common.
The end of domain name can be appended with a hosters name.
No possibility for information backup.
There are no guarantees and obligations of the hoster.
SEO optimization can be quite difficult.
Sometimes you can't choose what kind of CMS you can use (WordPress, Joomla, Drupal).
Some ad services do not cooperate with free hostings.
Free hostings have only one main advantage – absence of payment, however, there are a number of factors in which the decision to use free hosting is purely justified and logical. If you are a beginner who just started to try your hand at creating Internet resources and you don't plan any commercial activity, then this could be a good choice. So, free hosting is suitable for those who are creating a personal blog, creating own site with the purpose of practicing in programming, or for any other mostly individual needs.
If the goal is – commercial activity, website promotion and customer acquisition, it would be better to look for paid hosting options.
No undesirable advertising.
Provider's guarantees and responsibilities to clients.
Large amount of disk space.
Stability of servers and fast page loading time.
Ability to back up your data.
High quality and modern equipment.
Provider warns you in advance about maintenance or/and has strict maintenance scheduling.
Free website promotion and SEO optimization.
Fast technical support.
Integration with all popular programming languages and engines.
The only disadvantage of paid web-hostings is necessarity to make payments each month. In all other respects, paid hostings outperform free hostings. For sites that are created with the aim of attracting customers and commercial activities this is the optimal solution. However, paid storages also have their ratings and there is a huge list to choose from in 2021.
The speed of site loading depends on the ping. The faster ping is, the better and more actively resource's pages are loaded. When choosing a hosting, beginners often try to predict the quality of the connection basing on the TCP/IP parameters of the hosters network. But this information does not give a complete and reliable picture, since ping is also influenced by the server's load rate, the number of visitors, and also it depends of content that you provide. For any non-game portals, a ping speed less than 100ms will be sufficient.
If you do not know how to choose a hosting provider with the appropriate options, it would be better to choose the one that offers two most popular ways of payment - payment using banking credentials of a legal entity, as well as payment via PayPal, Visa, MasterCard. In these cases, you will be able to obtain confirmation that the organization's activities are legal. If the company does not accept payments by bank transfer, then there may be some hidden nuances - the absence of a banking account or illegal commercial activities of the organization.
In the case of electronic payments, you can check the company's PayPal account. Good rating in the system is a sign of the reliability of the counterparty. If the provider for some reasons avoids official payment instruments, then you should be careful.
The hosting plan depends of the services package, which includes a certain set of tools, available functions and disk space.
When you choose the first hosting plan, remember that the resource will grow and develop, so, over time, it may require transition to a more functional type of service. Good practice is to choose a low-cost starter plan when registering for the first time and then switch to another plan, when it is needed.
The types of hostings for the site differ significantly, so it seems to be quite difficult to make a representative analysis by the number of customers on each particular plan. However, you can always estimate the total number of web-host users. For resources that don't work with server clusters, and also do not buy out expensive servers, the optimal number of clients should be within 1700 people.
Support – is your providers “face”. Stability of your company and site functioning will depend on the supports response speed and the quality of services provided. High-quality technical support works 24/7, has an online chat on the provider's website, and also don't hesitate using other channels of messaging: skype, viber, whatsup, mail and tickets.
Navigation on the web-hosters site, as well as the convenient control panel for your site will allow you quickly and efficiently resolve current issues. So that will do clear and simple interface, as well as the integration of popular technologies. It will allow you to work with the resource in a more comfortable and effective way.
There is another confirmation of the provider's reliability – presence of the physical office and availability of a landline phone. Also the good sign will be if legal and physical addresses are the same.
In fact, there is no fundamental difference when choosing an organizational and legal unit. Much more important is the fact that the founder has provided real data and is conducting his business legally.
High-quality design, stable work, thought-out menu, competent and structured content are the standard. If you have noticed any bugs in the work of the site, you can immediately leave it, since the company's site is the main work tool for the hoster.
ТFor a beginner, choosing the right hosting, and then registering the domain name of the site is a process that consists of many stages. Another powerful tool are reviews for the provider. But even here you should take into account number of different factors:
Unsatisfied customers write reviews more willingly and more often than satisfied ones.
Reviews on the company's website could not be considered as a reliable source of information.
Company can try to form visibility of good reputation in the network, and to order a certain number of fabricated reviews.
To find out reliable information, you should analyze reviews on specialized resources. It would be better if these words will belong to people with high reputation and rating.