So you’re looking for a new web host? Great! Purchasing your own web hosting is a great step towards establishing a successful, independent presence on the Internet.
How to Choose a Web Host
Owning your own web hosting allows you to cater to your website’s unique needs. With a reputable web host you do not have to worry about being locked in with your provider. It also ensures that the content of your account is yours and yours alone.
Finding the Right Hosting Package
If you are just starting out, purchasing web hosting can be a bit intimidating. Where do you start? What’s the best kind of hosting for your project? To begin, you’ll want to ask yourself a few things:
- How large is the site going to be?
- How many visitors will your site generate?
- Are you going to be storing sensitive information?
How large is the site going to be?
pair Networks’ entry-level web hosting package comes with 15GB of storage. Our more advanced packages have much, much more space than that. So what’s appropriate for you? It mostly depends on the content of your site.
With 1 GB of Data you could store-
- Thousands of text-only emails
- 200 four-minute songs
- A 30 Minute Episode of your favorite TV Show
You can keep in mind that the typical webpage – a mix of images, text, and code – is about 1.6 MB.
Generally the majority of personal and small business sites online are well-suited for Shared Hosting. However if you anticipate a high volume of email correspondence or intend to utilize many dynamic elements (such as video, scripts, etc.), then a Dedicated Hosting Solution may be the best option for you.
How many visitors are you expecting?
This correlates to how much bandwidth your site is going to need. You can think of bandwidth like a road leading to your site. The larger your audience the wider your road has to be to accomodate all of the extra visitors.
Unless your site is streaming many videos or already wildly popular (congratulations!) chances are you will not have to worry about the bandwidth limits on your account. pair Networks does not penalize users that experience a spike in bandwidth from getting on the front page of the NYTimes for example, because pair Networks ignores the highest day of traffic once per month, when calculating bandwidth charges.
If you plan to store high volumes of sensitive information then a Dedicated Hosting Solution is best for you. You will also want to look into purchasing an SSL Ceritificate to encrypt information between your clients and your webserver.
What To Look for in a Webhost
Not only should the webhost be reliable and fast, it should guarantee its uptime (the time when it is functional). Look for a minimum uptime of 99%. The host should provide some sort of refund if it falls below that figure. Note though that guarantees are often hard to enforce from your end — especially if the host denies there was any downtime. However, without that guarantee, the web host will have little incentive to ensure that its servers are running all the time.
Does its technical support function 24 hours a day, 7 days a week (often abbreviated 24/7), all year around? You will be surprised at how often things go wrong at the most inconvenient of times.