When I created my first website, many years ago, I had no concept of web hosting. I literally had not heard of the concept, and only found out I needed it when trying to find a way to publish my blog. I read up about it and assumed that, while it was something I needed, any option would do. It was just a space where my site could exist, after all.
Fortunately, because I was creating a simple personal blog, the flaws that eventually emerged in my hosting choice did not destroy what I’d created. I didn’t need my site to be up-and-running all the time, and I ultimately changed hosting without too much trouble.
However, I learned my lesson. From then on, I would take hosting seriously. Without good hosting, you cannot rely on your own website. You end up losing visitors and, if you’re earning an income from your website, you lose money.
Do a web hosting comparison before you choose your hosting. Here’s what you need to look out for.
This is going to be the key factor on which your choice rests. If a hosting service is unreliable, then it is failing at its primary function. Unfortunately, there are too many web hosting services that cannot offer reliability. These services should be out of business, but because they use clever marketing strategies, as well as preying on the fact that most novices don’t put much thought into their hosting provider, they stick around.
BlueHost, GoDaddy, and other big names have all come under fire for a lack of reliability. Nonetheless, many people go with them because the name sounds familiar and they don’t realize it matters.
When you’re doing your research, expert reviews are only part of the story. You also need to look at what customers are saying. This is because customer service can make or break your experience, even with reliable hosting providers. Hosting is one of those services where you have to give up a lot of control to the provider. When something goes wrong, you cannot fix it on your own.
With this in mind, it’s no wonder that bad customer service is more than just frustrating. Even if your website is down for a short amount of time, lack of communication can cause you to become incredibly disillusioned.
It is so important to look at real customer reviews, because they will be able to tell you their actual experience with customer service. They will expose any bad practices or lack of care. They will show you the red flags that a review of the service itself might miss.
That said, you have to be careful with customer reviews, because some services hire writers to write fake reviews. There are some tell-tale signs. If the reviews are too uniformly positive, bringing up specific talking points, chances are they’ve been commissioned. Furthermore, if there is a fair number of negative reviews that tell you the opposite, listen to them. The odd negative review is inevitable, but a significant minority can point to something more sinister below the surface.