and room for growth – Keep in mind the future
needs of your web site. If the traffic to your site
explodes, or in the future you may need a database
solution then your host must be able to accommodate the
Quality of their support services
- Quality of existing
customers – ask for any BIG current customers that
are hosting with that service.
- Opinions of existing
customers – ask for any testimonies of existing
customers to get feedback from them concerning
reliability and support.
- Stability – you do not
want your hosting service to go out of business (like
what happened to many of the free hosts) and leave you
stranded. Check how many years they have been in
- Support and
Responsiveness – Make sure you can contact them 24/7
by phone or email. Test the quality and efficiency of
response by sending them an email pertaining to some
question you may have before you sign up.
Types of Hosting Services
Free sites are for people whose sites are small and do not
expect much traffic.
For small non business sites
No usage of domain names
Limited technical support
Unreliability of servers, software
Limited web space, technical support
Host may shut down due without notice
Virtual Hosting: (also
known as domain or shared hosting).
This is the most popular and cost effective form of
Great for the average business sites
Good technical support
Multiple sites on server
Sometimes slow updates
Limited security and control due to the large number of
sites on 1 server
Use your own domain name (www.yoursite.com)
What can you expect to pay?
Expect to pay $5 - $50/month for a small web hosting
package of 20-50MB of allocated space for your site. This
will be enough for up to 20 pages with a few graphics on
each page. You may find less expensive ones if you are
Most small web sites use only 2-3MB. Make sure you can
upgrade your hosting plan, should your site expand.
When you sign up for a monthly service, there is usually
no fixed length contract, so you can terminate your
contract at any time. Your commitment is month to month
although you often will get a discount if you sign up for
If you follow these basic guidelines, you will have a
reliable, efficient and satisfying hosting service that
will contribute to the success of your business for many
years to come.
Herman Drost is a Certified Internet Webmaster (CIW)
owner and author of iSiteBuild.com
Web Design and Web Hosting
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