Choosing the right web host for your small business is incredibly important. Click here for a complete guide to choosing small business web hosting.
More than 3 billion people use the internet every day.
As digital platforms expand and new technology arises, this number is only likely to keep on growing.
As a small business owner, it’s essential to take advantage of this massive viewership. Improved digital visibility can mean improved marketing efforts.
It can also mean larger profit margins and higher conversion rates, especially if your website truly delivers. In fact, your website is your leading digital marketing tool that has the potential to attract thousands and millions of users.
A high-performing website depends on high-quality web hosting. If you are looking for a new web host or are researching first-time hosts for your startup’s site, it’s important to do your research well.
In this post, you’ll find all the tips you need to select the best small business web hosting for your needs!
1. Know Your Hosting Needs
Before you go about identifying solutions for your small business web hosting, it’s critical to know your hosting needs.
If you are new to the world of web hosting, have no fear. This does not require a thorough understanding of computer science, coding, or modern hacking trends.
Your hosting needs can quite simply be your business needs. This is because your needs as a business often mandate the type of website you require, including its content and its support.
If you are a realtor, you may wish to showcase existing properties on your website using 3D renderings or virtual reality. Hosting needs for such a site differ widely from hosting needs for a blog website, for example.
If you are an e-commerce business owner, you may depend on 24/7 access to your online store. Perhaps your website incorporates a lot of videos and live streaming; this type of site requires a more committed web host.
Know your website content and purpose before you start browsing web hosts. The best small business web hosting will meet all of your needs so that you can deliver the content you need to deliver to users.
2. Choose the Type of Hosting that Suits Your Site
There is not a ‘one-size-fits-all’ web host for websites. Small businesses can choose from a variety of hosts depending on their hosting needs.
A lot of small businesses start out with shared hosting. Shared hosting is exactly what it sounds like: one server hosts multiple sites. Think of shared hosting as apartment housing, with all tenants depending on a single landlord.
Shared hosting is ideal for websites that don’t expect a lot of traffic and have minimal hosting needs. While it is often a more affordable route for people, it can also be insufficient for some business needs.
Another type of hosting is Virtual Private Server (VPS) hosting. VPS hosting is a step up from shared hosting, enabling users to have access to resources that are not shared. However, some components of this hosting service are shared with other website users.
Dedicated servers enable small businesses to have full and private access to their accounts. No aspect of the hosting service is shared.
In general, VPS and dedicated servers are ideal for small businesses expecting moderate to high levels of traffic. They also have a greater capacity for media and other virtual technology, such as AI, video streaming, and live chats.
When it comes to small business web hosting, make sure you identify what type of hosting select services offer. Some services, for example, only specialize in shared hosting. Others may offer the entire gamut, and may even be able to advise you in your selection.
3. Read Customer Testimonials
Customer experience is crucial when it comes to small business web hosting.
Your website can directly impact your digital marketing efforts. What’s more, the type of hosting support you receive can directly impact how consumers respond to your brand and your content.
Reading customer testimonials can give you a sense of the type of support a certain web host offers. They can also be helpful in weeding out services that aren’t likely to meet your comprehensive needs.
Many web hosts will incorporate customer testimonials on their website itself. Make sure to read these thoroughly and not what users are citing. Do most customers comment on the host’s support network? Prompt communication? Loading speeds?
Also, check out reviews on external review sites. A lot of web hosts may appear on Yelp, for example, or portals like Yellow Pages and E-Opinion. Prioritize the hosts that have extensive positive reviews.
But also prioritize hosts that have consistent and recent reviews. This will indicate a longstanding commitment to clients.
4. Investigate Customer Support Options
The best small business web hosting will offer premium customer support. If your website is down for any reason, you should be able to contact representatives in an instant to discuss the issue.
You should also be able to easily upgrade hosting packages at any given time, depending on your hosting needs.
Look for web hosts that display a high level of commitment to their customers. Research the support networks they have in place for customer questions, concerns, and issues.
It may be worth contacting a web host service over the phone and frankly asking about customer support options. You can also inspect the host’s website to see what communication channels exist.
The best hosts, such as Quality Host Online, will have multiple channels for 24/7 support, from live chat to support hotlines. Disregard hosts that demonstrate a subpar commitment to users.
5. Don’t Settle for Cheap
As a small business owner, it can be tough identifying marketing solutions that fit within the scope of your budget. This is especially the case for startups seeking cost-effective means of breaking out into the corporate world.
You may be tempted to select the most affordable small business web hosting. While financial limitations are certainly to be respected, it’s also worth noting that cheaper services may not designate quality services.
In fact, more affordable hosting options may skimp on key security measures that keep your content and data safe from hackers and loss. Others may limit the size and type of content you upload.
Keep in mind that web hosting solutions do constitute an investment for most businesses. As a small business, you may be able to make a bigger digital splash by investing in high-quality services.
6. Search for Scale-minded Hosts
As a small business owner, you have a lot on your plate. Sometimes it can be difficult to think about the future, especially if you are doing your best to stay afloat in the present.
However, most small businesses do have some vision of growth, even if it feels far off. It’s essential to account for this growth when browsing options for small business web hosting.
Look for web hosts likely to accommodate business growth.
These hosts will offer a variety of packages with flexible bandwidth options.
If a host’s scaled-mindedness is not obvious from a quick glance at their website, contact a representative and ask about flexible growth plans. Ideally, you’ll want to select a package that is a little above your current bandwidth needs.
7. Inspect Security Measures
Over 30,000 websites are hacked on a daily basis. While some of these hacks are generally benign, others can be severely compromising.
Security should be your top priority when it comes to putting data of any kind out there on the internet.
High-quality small business web hosting will integrate key security measures to keep your data safe should breaches of any kind occur.
When you are researching hosts for your hosting needs, always ask about security measures. Some hosts will offer the same security standard for all packages, while others build in more extensive measures for more dedicated services.
Speak with a representative to get a clear answer on how the web host will keep your data secure. Also, ask what hosts will do in the instance of a hack or data breach.
Avoid any hosts that have flimsy safety measures or only provide protection for high-paying clients.
8. Use Caution When Choosing Packages
Most web hosts offer their clients a variety of hosting packages, depending on the clients’ hosting needs. It can be overwhelming navigating these packages, especially if you are new to the world of web hosting.
Take your time in choosing a package. Make sure that you are aware of any fee structure in place for adding or removing services. Ensure that a package meets all of your existing hosting needs and has room for future ones.
Be cautious before signing a contract of any kind. Read the Terms of Service thoroughly before agreeing to a relationship of any kind.
These measures can ensure that you choose a web hosting solution free of any surprises.
How to Find Small Business Web Hosting
As a small business owner, you depend on a professional and well-supported website for establishing your brand. An effective web host will keep your data secure and ensure that your content is always looking its best.
When looking for small business web hosting, make sure you know your hosting needs. Read customer testimonials thoroughly and prioritize hosts that place a premium on customer support and data security.
Keep future growth in mind and exercise caution when choosing hosting packages.
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