Choosing a Hosting Service: A Checklist for Business Owners
For a website to appear on the Internet, you require a "server" that is usually provided by a web hosting company. Hosting companies are paid monthly, quarterly or yearly. Some companies come with guarantees, too. Recommendations from other business owners and web designers are excellent ways to find a good hosting service.
One of the primary features I recommend is that the hosting companies can grow with you. If they only offer one package, and you need more, your web site maybe down for up to 2 days and/or you may have to change the code on any forms you use to match the new "server settings".
Don't be afraid to read a hosting service's subscriber information, FAQs (frequently asked questions), note areas or bulletin boards on their sites.
A good hosting company offers as many of these basics as possible:
- This is a hosting company I can easily afford.
- They offer a Money Back Guarantee.
- They have information on their site about server uptime/downtime.
- The company contacts me, at my primary email address, when/if there are any server problems. (Could be problems when they're updating their server, hurricanes, etc.)
- They offer your own IP address http://postmaster.aol.com/info/ipexpl.html
- They provide at least 5 POP email accounts (example firstname.lastname@example.org) Your email accounts should include Alias Accounts, which look like a POP account to the person sending you an email; however, the address is actually an "alias" that's forwarded to any other email account you choose. And when you send an email back to the original sender, it is the forwarding email account, NOT the email@example.com that the sender receives.
- There is a Web-based Email system (a place for you to read your email online). If not, my favorite is www.e-mol.com
- An easy system for email forwarding (and vacation notice) capability.
- 24-hour customer service, by phone, even if it's a long distance call, is best!
- 50 mg space (the space you need for a 100 page website with each page being approx. 8x11)
- 2 Gig Data Transfer/month (this will be enough for quite a while!)
- Front Page Extensions ? only necessary if you create a web site with MS Front Page
- Cgi/PHP/MySQL (or asp availability). Check with your designer to see what you'll require for forms to be created).
- Easy Control Panel: This feature is especially important if you want to maintain your site or have someone else easily maintain it. It's the one place to visit when making changes to your site, add addresses, etc
- Statistics - Does your hosting companies plan include monthly and yearly statistics on each of your web pages? Will you know how someone found each of your web pages?
- Secure server, Shopping cart (and other things you'll need to set up a merchant account system)
- Server type: The type of server a hosting company you choose, should take into consideration the programs you will run for things like your shopping cart, affiliate program, web site pages, etc. If you're using ASP, JSP, PHP, CGI, PL, or CSS, these programs will influence the choice of a server and vice-versa. Your hosting service may use Windows (which for example accepts ASP but not PHP), Linux or Unix-based (Apache/FreeBSD/etc.) servers.
- Password Protection ? If you have plans to create a membership are or client's only area of your site, this is something to consider.
- Newsletter or announcement list
- Auto-responders (not usually available on very low cost hosting packages)
About The Author
© 2004 Maria Marsala, Business Builder and former Wall Street Trader. "Powering-UP service busine$$es and their owners". Providing articles, tips, classes, and resources for owners of service businesses. Learn more at http://www.ElevatingYourBusiness.com.
Fun with DNS: Three Useful Commands
The DNS is a distributed, hierarchical database where authority flows from the top (or root) of the hierarchy downward.
The Big Secret of Fabulous and Mediocre Web Site Hosting Companies
Most web site hosting services like the one you're probably using right now, provide you with space on which you can host your web site. These mediocre web site hosting companies will even help you set up your own email addresses and provide you with the ability to run your own scripts and programs.
Is Free Hosting Really Free?
Sooner or later, as everyone finds out, nothing in this world is free. Although there are literally hundreds of Free Hosting adds surfacing on the Internet, no one can stay in business very long giving it away. So how can hosting services offer free hosting?
Dedicated Web Hosting : The Executive Summary
What is Dedicated Web Hosting? Dedicated web hosting can alleviate the need to share hardware or software with any other sites or web pages. Webmasters are given the autonomy to decide on applications that are installed on the server to create specific configurations for their web needs, and have the ability to provide a secure environment for their site. As compared to a shared-server environment, dedicated web hosting offers a peace of mind that a site will be delivered in a reliable and secure manner.
Web Hosting Data Transfer: How Much Is Too Much?
Bandwidth in its simplest terms refers to the amount of data that flows across a network wire in a given time period. For most web hosting providers, that time period is measured in a month. Web hosting providers are charged a certain amount per month or per year for an allocated amount of bandwidth from backbone providers and wholesale data centers. That cost is then passed on to the consumer in the form of web hosting plans.
There is story of David and Goliath where Goliath would come and challenge everybody - "is there anyone amongst you who would dare to fight against me?" Who would dare to fight against him? He was a giant, there was nothing one could do to humble him.
Dont Get Fooled by the Web Hosting Wolves in Sheeps Clothing!
Are you looking for web hosting? If you want to set up a personal website, or a modest commercial one, you are probably in the market for an inexpensive shared hosting plan. Those entry-level plans may cost $5-10 per month, and often boast very generous features for that modest prize. However, the strong competition often causes the companies to oversell, and then have difficulties living up to their promises. And how do you go about telling the good ones from the bad? Maybe you go to one of the many web hosting review sites. Those places may offer extensive listings of various web hosting companies and their features; which is certainly helpful. But be aware of the fact that these review sites are out there to make money by referring new customers to the hosting companies! Therefore, they tend to praise those companies that pay them the best. I used to be naive about these things, trusting the review sites. That was until I began some serious research on the subject myself. Were they really so good, those much-praised web hosting companies? Soon, I was able to uncover large amounts of customer testimonials that told a different story. It became clear that several very large and well-known web hosting companies had surprising amounts of negative customer ratings against them. There were many angry customers that related stories about incompetent or non-existent customer support, billing disputes where the company kept charging ex-customers after they had cancelled their accounts; and more. One may say that any company with many customers is likely to have a few that are hard to please. But in these cases, there were scores of reviews, and the majority was negative! Since there are also cases where hosting companies have tried to prosecute those who have criticized them in public, I will not mention any names here. In conclusion: I advice anyone looking for a reliable and honest web hosting provider to be very careful and not put too much trust in the web hosting ratings commonly found at hosting review sites and similar places. Also be aware that the customer feedback published by the web hosts themselves on their sites is of course filtered - and may even be faked.
Finding the Right Web Host
Choosing the right Web Hosting service for your website can be a little bit confusing. There's so many choices out there and many people aren't exactly sure what they should be looking for.
Budget Web Hosting - Dirty Secrets That Can Squash Your Websites Chance of Success
When it comes to budget web hosting, there are a lot of dirty secrets that can really hurt your chance of success. However, if you know about these dirty secrets, you will be prepared and better able to handle any possible problems before they arise. Review the following secrets and make sure you know for sure what your web host is about before you sign up and risk your websites chance of success.
How to Choose a Web Hosting Company
Web Hosting Advice
Low Cost Web Hosting Services ? Dont Forget About Uptime
Once you have your company's web site up and running, it is vital that you do everything possible to keep it that way. Nothing sets off alarms in a customer's head faster than a non accessible web site or one that has features which do not work. A web site is literally your company's window to the world and every aspect of the site; including the design, content, accessibility, ease of navigation, and uptime, says a lot about your company.
Small And Medium Businesses Embrace Servers Running Linux
Although we are aware of Linux adoption by large enterprises, most people do not know that there are sizeable numbers of installations in small and medium businesses (SMBs) as well. This base is set to grow as server vendors lob tailor made Linux servers and applications at SMBs.
How to Choose the Web Hosting Provider?
1. Does the company offer telephone support or 24/7 email support?
How to Find a Dependable Web Host
Your new website is ready to upload, and now you need a web host. Or perhaps you already have a web host, but uptime and support are lacking. Of the thousands of web hosts to choose from, how do you find one that you can depend on? Know what can go wrong and what to watch out for, and research prospective web hosts carefully.
Choosing a Right Hosting Solution
You must have done all the hard works for developing your website but when it comes selecting your host you may face trouble that it does not have all the features which is required by your site. I know there are 100's of instance where a newbie or startup website owner suffered heavy losses in terms of money, delayed projects, financial debts and other things. So it is important to do some research before choosing a right hosting solution, so that you can give your business a kick start and escaped from possibilities of financial debts.
What to Look for in a Free Hosting Provider
The first thing that you must realize when looking for a free hosting provider is that nothing is truly "free". There will be some sacrifices?
Server Uptimes Revealed: The Hidden Cost of Cheap Hosting
We often see server uptime statistics when looking for hosting providers, for example 99.8%, 99%, or 99.99% server uptime guaranteed. Though 99% server uptime may sound good, but is it really and what does it mean?
How Can I Get The Web Host Services And Support I Need, Hassle-free?
Choosing a host or switching hosts can be an agonizing experience. There are so many choices and price structures.
Cheap Web Hosting - When Cheaper is Better
Anyone who has ever shopped for web hosting knows that you can spend anywhere from nothing up to several hundred dollars to host your web site. So what's the difference? Well often times if you're talking about typical shared web hosting in the $6 to $20 range ? nothing. That's right ? nothing! Nothing that is, except good old fashioned marketing and hype!
How To Change Your Web Hosting Provider ? Step-By-Step Guide
Whether you are disgruntled with the level of service your current web hosting provider, or you have discovered a provider that offers you better deal, or your online business has simply outgrown your present provider, any reason is as good as any for changing your web hosting provider. The only concern is how to switch your web site from a web host to another in the right way and no or as little aggravations as possible.