It’s a massive step for many bloggers going from a free platform to hosted but without a doubt the best decision you will ever make. But how do you know which hosting site to use? Remember cheaper isn’t always better, there is a lot more to think about than cost.
Be Clear On What You Need
It’s not good enough to say “I need hosting”, you need to be clear on what you need and want. Ask yourself some questions enabling you to develop a list of hosting requirements.
- What platform are you using?
- What content are you publishing? Content such as videos and high resolution photos require bigger storage and can affect the loading of a site if the hosting isn’t sufficient.
- What are your visitor stats, is this growing and what do you predict in a years time?
- Where is your target audience based? Do you need servers in a specific location?
- Do you require additional services? Email services, managed hosting and offsite backups?
- Uptime? If you generate an income from your site an uptime of 89% might be cheaper but you’d be loosing vital money making time. 99.9% would suit you much better?
- What support do you need? Do you need someone 24/7 available via phone or live chat or will out of hours email support suffice? I need someone there at a click of a button who can help me fix issues, bring my site back online etc. and I’m sure most bloggers are the same, hey are skills are writing not back end issues.
Recommendation and Reviews
A quick Google search will bring up a massive list of hosting sites so firstly seek out recommendations and reviews. Ask fellow bloggers what hosting company they use? What they like? What they don’t like? We all like to show off what others say about us look out for on page customer testimonials.
Reliability, Customer Service and Data Backup
For me the most important aspects of a hosting company are reliability, customer service and backup. Hosting providers which monitor their servers and components 24/7, 365 days a year are able to provide a higher uptime. HostSailor.com for example promises a 99.9% uptime guarantee for their clients and a minimum connection speed of 1Gbit/S. All that for less than a cup of coffee (under £1.50) they are so confident they even offer a money back guarantee.
24/7 Customer Support; I have no idea on the technical side. I need a highly knowledgeable team of customer representatives available 24/7 to help resolve any problems, not matter how small.
Choose a company that backs up your files. I have mine backed weekly to Dropbox via a plugin. But it is vital that your web hosting provider is also backing up so your blog/website can be restored easily. Ensure you know too how often your server will be backed up.
Talk to someone
Nothing beats an old fashioned chat! Once you have your list of requirements and you know exactly what you need and want, communicate with people. Chat through with the customer service team to organise a dedicated package tailored for your needs.
Photo Credit | Shutterstock
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