When you set up an online business, one of the most important decisions to make is to choose a web host. It can make the difference between a smooth experience for your customers, and one that makes them run a mile. To make sure you get it right, there are a few questions to ask a web host company. Ask them, and they will give you an indication of how good their service will be for your needs. Let’s take a closer look.
Are you flexible?
First of all, if you are expecting your website to grow, or to go through peaks and troughs, you need a flexible web host. In general, you will have a maximum amount of server space that you pay for each month. Once you go over this limit, some web hosts will be unable to give you any more space – meaning your site can’t be accessed. So, you need a web host that has flexible options, so that you can increase your server space as and when you need it.
Are you secure?
Security is all important these days, as web users begin to understand its importance. It is vital, then, that your online business offers a secure gateway – and this all starts with your web host. Secure Socket Layer – or SSL protocol is the absolute minimum you should use, especially if you are selling online. If you don’t have secure payment options, people will find somewhere else to do their shopping – it’s as simple as that.
What are your uptimes?
All web hosts will encounter downtimes in their service. The question is, how well – and how quickly – do they recover? Finding out how long their average uptime is can help you identify companies to avoid. You can read more about server uptime in this SiteGround review. The more a web host is down, the more it fails its customers. And, of they have slow response times, they are best avoided.
Do you offer 24/7 customer support?
Let’s not mess around here – you need a web host that offers support all the time. Technology doesn’t just break during working hours, unfortunately. And, neither do people stop using the web when they go home from the office. It’s always on – and that should be the case for your web host’s customer support, too. Not all web hosts will be able to offer you a human on the end of a phone line at all times, of course. But, at the very least, they should have an email system or live chat that you can use. It only takes a night and early morning for your business to lose a significant amount of sales. Good customer support will help you manage your risks.
Do you have guarantees?
Finally, make sure that your web host offers some kind of guarantee. Whether it’s to do with uptimes, response times, or customer satisfaction, they can all help your business run smoothly. Guarantees are, after all, a mark of quality, and they protect you as a customer. Different companies will have different policies – so find one that matches your concerns.