Shared Hosting for Beginners: What to Look For
Shared hosting is often the first refuge of most internet marketing beginners. Newbie webmasters choose shared hosting because of its sufficient resources at an affordable cost for a low traffic website. Shared hosting is obviously the best for anyone aspiring to start a new website and it can run the site well in its initial stages. So, the next question is what to look for in a reliable shared hosting provider? And that’s exactly what we try to answer in this post.
Shared hosting Server and Infrastructure
Server and infrastructure are the backbone of a webhosting company regardless of the type of hosting they provide. It is obviously the first thing to check about a shared hosting provider. Most hosting providers have a tour feature which lets you see the physical machines and infrastructure of their company. You can make use of this feature to get an idea about the quality of service that you will get. The quality of the server machines is a critical factor that would define the stability of the hosting service since low quality physical machines may need frequent maintenance which would cause frequent downtime.
Experience and Reputation
The authority and reputation of the webhosting provider should be given prime importance. Since you are a beginner and your website needs to be hosted there for a pretty long time, it is always safer to choose a webhost that has more experience in the field. It won’t be a big deal to find the reputed and authoritative webhosting providers as there are many reviews available online. Here is one sample list of best web hosting sites. The main advantage of going with reputed ones is reliability and security. It is important to stay away from webhosts that offer very high features at low prices as there is usually something that they won’t tell you initially.
Linux or Windows?
Linux is the most popular web hosting platform used by most hosting providers that you hear of everyday. When it comes to performance, there is not much of a difference between Linux and Windows web hosting platforms today. Windows used to have stability issues earlier but those issues are negligible now. The only considerable thing to note is that Windows supports ASP and .NET by default while Linux doesn’t. Linux web hosting is much cheaper than windows and it is difficult to find a windows host that fulfills all of your other requirements. So, if you don’t have to use ASP and .NET, it’s better to go with a Linux host. Read more on Linux and Windows difference here.
Storage and Bandwidth
This goes without saying, but you need to choose a web host that can fulfill your storage requirements now and in future. If you will host big files on the server, it’s wise to choose a hosting plan that has a higher storage capacity than what you think you will need. Bandwidth is one thing that you can never ignore and which will define the uptime of your website. Despite your site being new, it is safer to go with a web host that can serve you higher bandwidth so that you don’t have to move hosts later on.
Customer support is a crucial part of any web hosting provider and you should consider it before choosing the one to host your first website. As a great customer support team can ease your headache on the technical problems, it is important to make sure your web host has an active one. With a cold customer support, you will find your issues unfixed for a long time and you could lose potential customers. In order not to let this nightmare happen, always make sure you go with a host that has great customer support.
Pricing and affordability is not always the last concern of most beginners, but once you have all the requirements fulfilled, you should obviously choose an affordable one. Being a beginner, pricing is something that can be a big burden if it goes higher than your budget. Not all the affordable web hosts are bad at their services. It usually needs a little comparison and time to find the one that is good at services and affordable on pocket at the same time. But once you’ve made up a list of web hosts that are good enough, you can easily choose the one that is cheaper among them and set your shared hosting there. However, make sure you don’t compromise quality for the low prices.