What are The Main Differences Between Web Hosting Providers
In this article we will be talking about the main differences between top hosting providers. Many of the best hosting companies looks the same and the features and pricing may be very similar, but still there are plenty of differences that you may not know about.
From experience, I can tell you that most people tend to forget how important web hosting for a successful website is. Usually the most effort goes into developing the online project and hosting is the last on the list, because it may be easy to acquire whatever hosting plan. Well, this concept is totally wrong, because the success of your site stand in the quality and the performance of your web hosting plan. While there are thousands of hosting providers, offering different plan, and all may look the same, here as some important factors that makes a difference between good and bad hosting companies.
Guarantees, policies and limitations
Each hosting company tries to make their terms and policies in such ways to cover and protect themselves as much as possible in case a customer sues them for providing bad. In their advertising campaigns, hosting companies are offering guarantees and promises that may be very attractive for customers, but they do not talk about the limitations that come along with the offers. For instance, there are unlimited hosting packages, with unlimited web space and bandwidth, but they limit the number and the size of files you can upload to their server. Another advertising catch is the 99% uptime guarantee. You should note that 99.9% is not equal to 99%, if you do the math, the small difference results in almost 4 days in downtime every year. Will you accept this?
I can only suggest reading the terms of the hosting company carefully before you make business with them. If there is anything that is not very clear for you, regarding their policy, just contact the support and ask for explanations.
Location of servers and quality of hardware
When choosing a hosting provider, it is essential to know where their servers are located. A hosting company can be based in your country, but have their servers located on the opposite side of the globe, because they actually resell hosting and this way they can make higher profits. If your website will target local audience, for faster website loading you want to have the server in the same location where you are. A web server located to thousands of miles from you can result in delay of 3-5 seconds, which is huge difference compared to the competitors. The hardware is also essential; old hardware can result in downtime, data loss and bad customer experience. Make sure that the hosting provider you want to sign up with use latest server and network technologies to ensure the best performance of your website.
Hosting cost, upgrade options, renewal fees
Depends on the hosting type you choose, the price can vary a lot from company to company. Do your research; communicate with other webmasters on hosting portals about the cost of web hosting, read reviews and recommendations and find out how much should you pay for a shared, vps or dedicated server. When you find the company that is in the price range you want to pay, also check their renewal policy and setup fees. Some companies tend to offer their hosting for very low cost, and after signing the contract they will charge you extra for setup. Domain renewals can also be higher at a hosting company than at domain registrars, probably you want to separate the domain registration from your hosting provider.
When your website starts growing and start receiving more and more traffic, you will need to purchase a hosting plan that can still support the performance of your site. Think in advance, and choose a hosting firm, that offers you the possibility to upgrade your plan anytime.
Wrapping up and some tips
Keep in mind that even some offers from different hosting providers may look the same, but there are always some minor or major differences. Do your research before buying hosting and you can’t go wrong. And my golden tip would be to start browsing for a web hosting provider right away, when you start the development of your website, this way you can test different functionalities and the performance of your code on a live server as well.