When selecting a “home” for your website or internet project, it’s important to keep in mind a few simple guidelines to avoid future regrets over lost time and money. Our tips will help you establish a clear algorithm for choosing a paid hosting service for your site, based on various paid and free management systems.
Carefully Choose the Company
There are hundreds of hosting providers on the internet, catering to all tastes and budgets. It’s easy to get overwhelmed by the choices. Therefore, it’s crucial to remember that you should only entrust your project to a proven market player.
The first page of search results for “hosting” will yield the desired outcome, from where you can delve into the nuances of selecting from 10-15 companies. Do not be swayed by advertisements and promises of “super hosting” for one dollar a month from unknown firms that fill various ads. Among them could be scammers!
You should also vet a company from the top of the search results. It’s unlikely that a fly-by-night company would be there, but as the saying goes, “trust but verify.” First and foremost, the company should have a long history (check the domain via a Whois service). It’s also important that they have a free, preferably 24/7, multi-channel support number where you can clarify all the nuances of the tariff plan that interests you. At the very least, there should be an online consultant who responds promptly to questions.
Determine the Technical Specifications of Your Internet Project
At this stage, you should have a clear understanding of the expected traffic to your site and the number of requests it’s designed to handle. Is it a personal page with about 10 visits a day, or a global online store with thousands of visitors daily? Depending on this, choose between virtual hosting, virtual private server, dedicated server, or cloud hosting.
We won’t go into the details of each type. These hosting types differ in their readiness to accommodate visitors to your site. Virtual hosting is prepared for a minimal influx of guests, while cloud hosting can handle the maximum.
The choice of hosting type also depends on the characteristics of your CMS system. You can select a more specific option on forums dedicated to your site management system (WordPress, Bitrix, Joomla, etc.).
Among the technical specifications, the space allocated for your site is also important. For most modern projects, 1-2 GB is sufficient. Most hosting companies support PHP and MySQL databases. However, your project might not need so much space or database support, in which case, simpler specifications might suffice. Clarify these with the support service.
Many wonder whether to choose Linux or Windows hosting. If you’re not familiar with the details, the Linux platform is more secure and efficient for most internet projects. Unless there are specific instructions from the site developer or CMS manufacturer, Linux is usually the best choice.
Test, Test, and Test Again, Preferably for Free
Most hosting companies offer the opportunity to test your projects for free (usually on a third-level domain). It’s great if you can host for free for a week. A month is optimal. During this time, you can assess how smoothly the site operates and how quickly the support service responds to questions and resolves issues. If you’re satisfied with the service and your site experiences no technical difficulties, you can consider choosing that hosting company and then look into your wallet to purchase paid hosting.
Carefully Choose the Tariff, Don’t Forget About Growth!
Once you’ve determined the technical specifications and tested the site’s operation, it’s time to choose tariff plans that meet your requirements. Currently, the optimal tariff based on market offerings is 5 dollars a month for 1 GB of space, 10 sites, and support for PHP and MySQL. In other words, the “average temperature in the hospital.”
However, it’s important to compare tariff offers from different companies and choose the best price and technical requirements for you. If another company’s pricing suits you better, it might make sense to transfer your site files to them and test the project’s operation again.
When choosing a particular tariff plan, remember that your project might grow over time and the existing technical framework might become “cramped.” Check with the support service for the potential to upgrade to more advanced tariff plans with minimal costs and time. It’s crucial that this upgrade option is available!
You Can’t Skimp on Security
When choosing a hosting company, tariff plan, and its technical specifications, it’s important to focus on security. Any internet project can be subject to hacker attacks and breaches, from ordinary pages to cryptocurrency exchanges and even the website of the White House! Be vigilant and always pay attention to the hosting provider’s offers to enhance site security with specific protection tools, installing security certificates, and more. In any case, don’t forget to make backup copies of your site’s files and data so they can be easily restored in case of a “crash.”
So, the hosting is chosen, files are uploaded, the site is tested and operational – safe travels and “bon voyage” for your traffic!