It can be very exciting when you eventually decide to set up your own website. Whether it is to promote your business or serve as a personal blog, it is important that you carefully consider which of the many web hosting service providers you will work with. We have previously addressed the key factors one should consider when choosing a web host, now we will look at some of the common mistakes many make during this process and can often lead to the site failing to perform as expected.
- Relying on online reviews
There are a whole lot of web host providers who publish so-called client reviews onsite. There are also very many Top 10 lists of the best web hosts to be found online. Many of the reviews tend to be fake while the lists are just tailored for marketing purposes. While personal experience is the best teacher, you can likely find useful advice on tech forums where web-hosting experiences are shared.
- Using price to pick a provider
While the popular adage says that you get what you pay for, the reality is that there is no guarantee that the most expensive web host provider will offer you the best service. On the other hand, free web hosting and those that make ‘unlimited’ offers more often than not fall short of expectation. Chances are once you have considered all the factors, you will have several good options of web host to choose from. Try to avoid those that are too lowly priced to be believed, while still remaining within a reasonable budget.
- Signing up long term
Trial error is often the order of the day when choosing a web host. Many of the best run websites started on being hosted on various platforms before the owner settled on their current long running choice. In many instances, these web hosts will not provide genuine money back guarantees. You may end up paying for a yearlong contract, and become fed up by the second month. It is advisable to initially try out short-term contracts until you are comfortable with the service to avoid losing out on your payment.
- Letting your ISP host your site
Many ISPs have diversified their offerings to include web hosting services. Unfortunately, because this is not their core business, they do not offer adequate technical or phone support. Even if they market their offerings in very attractive packages, do avoid them entirely or you will be disappointed.
- Failure to backup
This is particularly devastating if you have chosen a relatively new web host. This is a business with a very high turnover and a provider can flake on you fast. Always make a point of backing up your website so that if you have to start over with another provider, you get your website back up and running quick
Whether you are looking for a free or commercial web host, it is important to consider certain factors that will have a strong impact on the success of your platform.
- Uptime and speed
The goal of setting up a website is so that your clients, followers and others may be able to access it and explore the content. In order for them to feel encouraged to only check out what you are offering, but also keep coming back, they need to be able to access the site. If the web host is unreliable, you may find your site suffering frequent downtimes, or taking too long to upload pages. A good host should provide an uptime of at least 99% to be worth investing in.
With free web hosting, the provider makes their money off advertising revenue channeled to online users via your site. How these adverts will appear may vary. Some adverts may appear as popup windows, others may be banner ads, while yet others may take the form of advertising frames that consume a considerable portion of your web pages. Know that many online users dislike the manner of aggressive advertising that comes with free web hosting, so consider this when you decide whether to opt for free or paid web hosting.
- Phone and technical support
All too often, there are problems that a client will face with their website. Whether it is trouble with uptime or disputing data transfer charges, it is important that the web host offer you phone support so you can discuss the issue with a real person. Online chat and email may be helpful, but they do not communicate urgency when needed. If you prefer to have your problems dealt with in real-time, seek a web host with 24-hour phone support that works.
- Web space
Majority of sites take up very little web space. In fact, many do not surpass a limit of 5MB space. If however you intend to load up on heavy content like videos and music, or expect to expand your content considerably in coming years, you will likely require a web host who can accommodate your growing data needs.
This is another serious consideration, as it will affect the amount of traffic your site can accommodate over any given period. Free web hosts tend to be particularly restrictive and some are known to disable a site once a site has been accessed a certain number of times in a day. Avoid any provider who touts unlimited bandwidth as this provision is certainly expensed. Be sure to critically assess the bandwidth and resource limits set by your provider before signing on to their service.
- User-friendly control panel
It is important to be able to make changes o your website as you desire, without having to train yourself up in subjects such as web design. A user-friendly control panel provided by the web host should allow even novices the ability to get their websites in working order easily. It does not really matter if the website control panel is sourced from a third party or custom tailored for the provider, what matters is that you be able to make use of it without having to frequently ask for help.
- Client reviews
This is the least important consideration when it comes to choosing a web host. The reason behind this is that any business that is online based will have a knack for trying to build up its online reputation with fake reviews. These days it is difficult to find authentic reviews even on independent online review sites unless you know the reviewer and understand their level of knowledge in managing a website, it is a good idea to take such advisement with a pinch of salt.
Most people are familiar with the SSL certificates that denote that a site is secure enough for them to login, undertake credit card transactions and data transfer. This kind of certification makes online users feel safer about entering confidential details into their browsers. SSL, or secure sockets layer, is a type of encryption that ensures that data entered on a site is safely transferred from the client web browser to the company server. These days, many business websites receive tons of personal data from potential and existing clients. From their contact details to credit card info, it is important that clients feel their information is being handled discreetly.
With the growing number of hackers who take pleasure in revealing and otherwise illegally using such confidential information that has become essential when doing business online, it has become vital for businesses to work on how to keep the data provide private and secure. Here are a few reasons anyone looking to do business online should seek to acquire an SSL certificate.
These days it can be risky to put up any personal sensitive information online. Data theft is big business and can have devastating consequences if maliciously obtained. Data encryption ensures that in as much as you are using the internet to relay your information to a remote web server, it remains unreadable until it gets to its destination where it is unscrambled.
This is what SSL certificates help to do. They protect sensitive information from being understood by malicious parties, even if they were to get hold of it, thereby protecting your clients. PCI standards require those with an SSL certificate to have an encryption of at least 128 bit. Achieving these set standards and compliance audits will make it easier to gain approval for credit card transactions.
There are many instances where online users find that they are not on the website they originally intended to be. Criminal activities like phishing can make it difficult to distinguish an authentic website form a fake. SSL certificates however help to ensure that you are dealing with a legitimate website set up by a trusted business. No private connections are allowed to get though and access data that is being fed into the web pages. A site that is authenticated is safe to undertake credit card transactions on. because of the safeguards put in place, those that build phishing web sites find it incredibly hard to acquire authentic SSL certificates.
- Client Trust
When you have a business website that is SSL certified, your clients are able to trust that whatever information they provide you with online will safely get to your servers. This encourages them to carry out transactions online. The feeling of trust created by an SSL certificate is great for helping boost client confidence in your brand and encourage more sales as they can safely deal with you online. the benefit of being able to drum up more business will help offset the costs involved in setting up the necessary infrastructure to support SSL certification.