- March 23, 2017
- Try to find a web host that offers a free trial. By the way, this in itself is also a distinguishment since there aren't many hosts offering a free trial. There are however many web hosts that offer free web hosting which gives you the opportunity to try out a provider first before making any payment. The problem however with these free accounts is that there can be limitations which may include limited technical support. So it's probably better to limit ourselves to finding a free trial that offers the same features as the host's paid services without limitations.
- After opening a free trial account, you could deliberately make some blunders such as deleting your database, misconfiguring the login access to your data base, or putting wrong coding in your .htaccess file etc.
- Now email support and explain your problem. This may sound a little bit abusive, but remember, the future of your on line success is at stake which can justify this action. And nobody prohibits you from testing a webhosting service first before buying an account. Be concise but include any detail that might be important. Write down how fast they react and how good or bad support is. My own hosting company not only resolves problems by giving correct advice, they also often do the "repair" work themselves when they notice that the customers is probably not able to do it independently or the employee just likes do do it for you. Personally I benefited so many times from this when I was still a new webmaster and it still happens now and then. Email response time shouldn't be longer than ten minutes and resolution capacity should be of a high level. This means that complicated issues should be resolved in about 15 minutes. Longer than that is basically not acceptable unless the support team is confronted with a situation whereby another department or an external security expert has to be involved in the solution. Think about a customers request to move a website to another data center, security problems such as hacking or similar issues.
- Next step could be to follow the steps above but this time you don't email the company but, instead, you call technical support at 2AM on Sunday morning or at any other very inconvenient time in the country where the web host is located. Do they answer the phone? How long does that take? Do they resolve the issue within a reasonable amount of time? Are they friendly and polite?
Millions of web hosting companies.In a hurry? You can click here to jump to the conclusion or solution.
Finding the perfect hosting company for your needs isn't an easy task. According to Netcraft there are currently more than 40 million hosting providers worldwide. We may assume that 75 percent of these companies are not really active or extremely small which leaves us with approximately 10 million real web hosts. Note that this isn't more than an estimation. Many of these businesses promote their services with a focus on unlimited bandwidth, unlimited disk space, and sometimes with an extra focus on features such as unlimited email accounts or domain names. Then there's also a focus on enticing prospects with promotions such as first month free or 50 percent discount. The art of the game is to ignore this stuff. Practically all accounts come with unlimited features and specific discounts. These aspects do not create a distinguishment for the businesses you are dealing with.
This is where I have reached the point of what I'm trying to explain and that is the fact that, when searching for a good host, one should look at features that set a company apart from others. Superior technical support can be one of them. The problem however is that you can hardly have advance knowledge about the level of support that a company is able to provide. This means that you'll have to do some research with this possible lack of knowledge in mind. Your research could go as follows:
Professional technical support is an important feature of hosting companies and simultaneously it's an acceptable way of concluding if a provider stands above the competition. Another distinguishable feature could be how many different web hosting plans the firm offers. If they offer shared, semi-dedicated, VPS, dedicated and customized packages, then at least, you know that you're dealing with a "complete" host. A web host offering less can better be avoided. Especially the customization aspect can be considered as important. A company that is willing to work with you to develop a package that is perfectly tuned to your requirements, proofs its service and knowledge level. A relatively new feature is search engine optimization support. If a webhost offers professional free tools to its customers that help webmasters with rankings in the search engines, you are dealing with a company that is willing to provide good services to its clients. And when I'm talking about search engine optimization tools I'm not talking about a simple tool that submits your website to thousands of search engines. I'm talking here about tools that, for example, show how many backlinks you have, what your website's keyword density is and maybe even personal advice from the company itself. Personal advice and support from the hosting company with the goal to get your site up in the rankings, wouldn't that be nice? Unfortunately, as far as I know, it doesn't exist. There are hosts that can give you a lot of different IP addresses but I don't think that these IP ranges can fool Google. Ranges are very easy to block from higher rankings. Last but not least I would like to mention free content management systems. I'm now talking about WordPress, Joomla, Drupal, Mambo, Moodle and more. If these content management systems are not included for free then you're probably not dealing with a professional company. There are simply too many webmasters who need at least one of them. A requirement is that a provider should only offer the latest versions. A host offering an old version cannot be considered as a reliable partner in business.
ConclusionWhat I have described here is not waterproof. This article is only meant to present some guidelines on selecting a good website hosting company. The disadvantage of the method described in this article is the fact that it's time and energy consuming. The advantage however is the fact that these guidelines are not bad but you'll have to work for it. If you focus during your search on the areas in which a provider can stand out from the rest, your chance of finding a good web host will become a bit bigger. Finally, may I invite you to click the banner at the top of this page which would make things a lot easier to you? Thanks for dropping by and, if you need to know more, you can also watch the video below.
Best regards from Dick Detering.