Web Hosting FAQ
When choosing a provider for unlimited bandwidth hosting, these are the main areas that you should be considering. And they have nothing to do with who has the best website design templates or who offers the most frills.
Running a business on the internet can be a lot of fun. Chances are, you will be in this for the long haul. And making a wise hosting choice now will definitely support your future success.
What is Web Hosting?
Web hosting is a service that you purchase to keep your website constantly available to people on the internet. And unlimited bandwidth hosting means that you are charged a flat rate for hosting, no matter how much traffic you have coming to your site.
Should I choose a FREE site?
Free web hosts do provide basic service, but there are often some hidden penalties.
* You may have to use an odd-looking domain name, such as:
* Some will display advertising on your website, in exchange for the free hosting.
* Some will impose unreasonable limits on the size of your website or the visitor traffic allowed. They may even shut you down for using excessive bandwidth.
* And many times, the free hosting is basically just a ploy to get you to upgrade to their “paid” hosting plans. So you might as well choose the best “paid” provider to begin with!
In general, free hosting plans are okay for very light use, such as storing family recipes or photos. But they usually don’t work well if you need to present a professional image.
How much is paid hosting?
An average cost for hosting a website is about $5-$7 per month. If you have a lot of domains, the cost per domain can be as little as $1 per month or less. Eventually, as your website traffic increases and you have money coming in, you will need to pay more each month to cover additional bandwidth usage.
Avoid the free sites. For business purposes, it’s usually better to pay a small monthly fee for hosting because your web host will be more reliable and you will appear more professional. If you hope to earn some income on the internet from your website, then it’s important to choose the right web host to help you get there.
Should I get a reseller account?
If you plan to put up several websites, it does help to have a reseller account, even if you do not plan to resell web hosting space yourself. Once you get rolling, it’s very easy to wind up with 25-30 websites or more. And then, the cost for each website will seem miniscule. A reseller account also makes it easier to manage multiple domains.
On the other hand, maybe all you need is a small account for right now. You can always upgrade later. In fact, it’s not even hard to switch hosting companies, if you should run into future problems. Basically, you go to your registrar (like GoDaddy or Namecheap), and you point their domain record to your new hosting servers.
Who are the safest webhost providers?
Don’t just go by the pricing plans –or those hosting plan specs that look good on paper. In the long run, is it really going to matter whether you pay $5 versus $7 per month to the company hosting your website? Probably not.
And the loftiest claims about terrific customer service don’t mean a thing if there are tons of people hollering “fraud” and threatening to sue the company. Two of the safest choices include Hostgator and InMotion, based on reputation and feedback from satisfied customers.
Choose a company that values its customers and responds promptly to questions or complaints. You do not want a company that is unresponsive, that might shut you down without any warning based on some vague accusations of spamming, or one that will fire you as a customer because of some little computer glitch with your monthly payment.
Are these webhost providers reliable?
Reliability is absolutely crucial! The last thing you want to experience is sudden website failure, after putting in endless hours of web design and marketing effort. Your site must be available to your clients at all times, or it means lost revenue for your business. Therefore, you want a web provider with uptime of 99% or better. As long as you choose a provider with a stellar reputation, you should not experience any noticeable downtime.
Many hosting providers are quite similar these days. So you might as well seek out the best of the best. Your hosting provider should do regular backups, just in case you should ever lose your site and not have an adequate backup of your own. They should offer redundant systems, so that if one server goes down, there is a standby server that can keep your website running.
Can I count on customer service and tech support?
Support is also a big factor to consider. You may, occasionally, have questions — or problems installing a third party script to make some aspect of your website run better. When glitches arise, it can be very comforting to have a responsive customer support team that will give you personal help and answer support tickets within 24 hours.
Is website design software important?
Not really. Not anymore. For one thing, the free website designers that come with your hosting package are pretty limited. They can be hard to use. And it’s very hard to find just the right website template that you can use for free. So you might as well just avoid them altogether. There are plenty of third party tools to create HTML pages, with templates included; for example, the free version of NetObjects Fusion.
Most people these days are putting up blogs with WordPress, which serves as both a website design tool and a website management tool. No additional web designer software is needed.
You will need a very flexible WordPress theme (which performs the same function as the old web design templates). One of the best free ones is called Atahualpa. Your website does not have to look like a blog, either. With a good, flexible theme, you will have control over all the design aspects.
Initially, WordPress seems slightly more difficult to learn than an automatic online site designer. But then it makes managing and updating your whole website so much easier.
Once I have a website, what else do I need?
At the very least, you will need to add content to your site, and get backlinks (which are links to your site from the sites of others). You might also want some third party tools, like an autoresponder to keep in touch with your clients, a shopping cart system to take orders, and a credit card merchant account to process payments.
You may wish to sell adsense ads or other advertising on your site. Or you might require some specialized function such as an online photo gallery or a membership forum.
A website is usually a work in progress, that requires ongoing changes as it grows to be bigger and better. Luckily, there are many third party website tools or WordPress plugins that can help you to accomplish whatever you wish. And unlimited bandwidth hosting usually means you’ll have all the space you need.