Choosing the right web host for your website is crucial as it can help ensure your success in the online world. It can also significantly take your website performance to a whole new level. That’s why you must be extra careful when selecting a web hosting provider; ideally, it should offer quality services.
Unfortunately, while finding web hosting providers is easy, choosing the right one can be challenging. Most providers often claim to provide everything that a website owner needs. But once there are issues, they may not be able to provide enough assistance to resolve your concerns. So, before you hire one for your web hosting needs, here are the questions to ask your preferred providers:
1. What Is Your Backup Policy?
Storage type can affect your rankings. For instance, if you can’t quickly recover your data after a breach, your website may not be able to work effectively, resulting in downtime and possible disruptions. That’s why you need to ask about the company’s backup policy.
Check if they provide regular backups and the storage options they offer. These days, most companies offer a good backup policy. They may provide various types of backups, such as:
- Off-Site Data Backup – Web hosting providers can store backup data at separate facilities or data centres. They may also do this via data storage services that other companies offer.
- Incremental File System Backup – This backup only takes the recently changed data and stores it on another system.
- Full Server Backup – This takes all your server’s data and automatically backs everything up to another location. It includes your database, images, content management system, and other things in your hosting account.
- On-Site Data Backup – Several hosting companies store data on-site at their own data centre. Typically, backups are stored in separate physical devices from your website but within the provider’s same facility.
2. What Support Do You Offer?
Regardless of your experience as a website owner or developer, you may face issues with your hosting plan. One common problem you may encounter includes the database not loading accordingly on your site. Other issues can be out of your control, like server outages.
When it happens, you might want a web hosting provider that offers excellent support, especially if you encounter a sudden spike in your website traffic. For those who aren’t tech experts, you will need assistance; ideally, one that explains things in layman’s terms. While other providers offer an online ticketing system or email support, some web hosting companies provide round-the-clock telephone and online chat support. Look for the latter type for your convenience.
3. Is It Possible To Scale Down Or Up Whenever Necessary?
For many businesses, expansion is one of the main goals. And when that happens, they may need to switch to a better web hosting service. However, your website may need more or less bandwidth and storage at some point. For instance, if your website gets more traffic, more storage is necessary.
With that in mind, ask your web hosting provider if you’re locked into a specific contract or can make adjustments tailored to your needs. The best web hosting provider is more flexible and offers a variety of accommodations that will let you scale down or up based on your unique needs.
4. What Are The Different Web Hosting Plans You Offer?
Different web hosting plans are available, and not all companies offer all these plans. For this reason, it’s crucial to ask your preferred providers about the web hosting plans they offer.
Remember, every web hosting plan is suitable for a specific purpose and available at different prices. Understanding the difference between such plans will help you determine which is best suited for your requirements.
Some of the web hosting types you can choose from are as follows:
- Shared Hosting – It’s the most affordable and common choice of website owners. It’s suitable for personal blogs, simple websites, or small businesses with less traffic.
- Virtual Private Servers (VPS) Hosting – While users share the same server, you can get a dedicated server without paying for the entire server and keep the costs low. Unlike other web hosting plans, it’s suitable for websites that need more server control while on a budget, such as small and mid-sized online businesses.
- Dedicated Hosting – It’s the most expensive web hosting plan, but it gives you better control over the entire server since you’re the only one using it. You can also access massive amounts of resources.
5. What Type Of Security Do You Offer?
Before doing business with any web hosting provider, you should ask about their security features or policies. As cyber-attacks continue to increase, securing your website’s and customers’ data is essential.
To prevent possible cyber threats, most web hosting providers offer security features, such as:
- Server Monitoring – Companies perform server monitoring 24/7 to prevent cyber attacks. They also perform anti-malware scans regularly.
- Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) Availability – This is a networking protocol that secures connections between web clients and web servers over the internet. Many websites nowadays require an SSL certificate to stay competitive and meet the search engines’ requirements. If you wish to ensure your website’s security, check if your provider supports SSL or if it requires an additional fee to enable this functionality.
6. Are There Hidden Charges?
Working with a web hosting company that has hidden charges can be annoying and frustrating. Fortunately, you can avoid this by asking your preferred provider about hidden fees. It’s also critical to understand the introductory offers you’re being given. It means your renewal rate can be higher than the initial cost.
It’s also vital to ask about extra fees, such as:
- Excessive bandwidth usage
- Additional storage
- Set up fees
- Multiple domains
If your chosen company doesn’t answer your questions about hidden fees, take it as a red flag. A reliable web hosting company isn’t afraid to discuss its charges and often keeps transparency in mind.
7. What Type Of Uptime Scores And Server Reliability Do You Offer?
Having a round-the-clock web host is vital to keep your website running. Web hosts operating on stable network connections and powerful servers are what you need. Typically, the best uptime score is 99.5%, and anything below that is unacceptable.
There are several ways to get a web hosting provider’s uptime information. One of these is using server monitoring tools to track your web hosting company. Once you have the information you need, ask your provider other questions about uptime scores and server reliability to get the best value from your investment.
An excellent web hosting provider is critical to an effective and efficient website. By choosing the right one in the market, you’ll have the tools you need to continue growing in the future and make your website successful.