One of the most important decisions you make when setting up a website is choosing a web host. The many different types of service and the wide range of packages on offer can leave a newcomer bamboozled when it comes to selecting the right service provider.
1.BANDWIDTH LIMITS- Bandwidth is a term used to describe the amount of data you send from your server to your visitors’ browsers. Every time someone loads one of your pages on their computer or smartphone you are using up bandwidth. If you have a site that has lots of heavy content, such as large media files (videos, images, music, etc).Neither paying for extra bandwidth or being taken offline are desirable options, especially as going beyond your bandwidth limit is a sign that your website is doing well. What you really need to look for is a web host that provides either unmetered or unlimited bandwidth on smaller (shared) hosting packages and bandwidth allocations on bigger plans which are so high it’s highly unlikely you will ever surpass them.
2.DISK SPACE ALLOCATION- The amount of disk space you will need depends entirely on your personal circumstances. If you are a small business wanting to run nothing more than a website, then you are not going to need huge disk space at all. However, if you are a large enterprise collecting enormous amounts of data and running powerful applications you will certainly need much more space for all the information and programs you need to store.
As most hosting packages have either disk space limits or file number limits, you should carefully assess your requirements and future needs before picking a package that will provide you with the disk space you require.
3.TECHNICAL SUPPORT- Managing a website can get quite technical and sometimes problems occur that either you don’t know how to solve or which need solving by your web host. For this reason, you need a web host that provides 24 hours a day, 365 days a year technical support. You don’t want your website going offline on Friday night and not being able to talk to someone until Monday morning.
4. TECHNICAL FREEDOM- To enable your website to function in the way you want it to, there is a range of technical operations that you may want to carry out. Whilst, you may not have come across such things as FTP, PHP, .htaccess, MySQL, or cron jobs yet, it is likely that you will as you develop your knowledge of running a website.
FTP allows you to upload and download files to your website directly from your computer.PHP is the language that many websites are written in, but sometimes you need to use certain versions which are compatible with the software your website is built.
5. ABILITY TO USE SSL- In simple terms, SSL is a small piece of software that enables websites to encrypt data sent from a user’s browser to your server. You can recognise sites that have it as they have an address that begins with https instead of http. If you run a website that takes payments or personal information from customers, then it’s likely that you will require an SSL certificate – especially now that Google is warning customers that websites without https are not secure.
6. GREAT EMAIL- When you are purchasing a hosting package, you should also check out the email service that is provided with it. You need to make sure that you can set up email accounts that have the same domain as your website and that you can use a range of access methods such as POP3 and IMAP. In addition, you want a service that can be accessed anywhere online and which allows you to set up email forwarding, autoresponding and email newsletters.