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The Foundations of Web Hosting

Published on 12/23/2009 by

Like the foundations to a house, an excellent web hosting package should be solid, offer support, and remain invisible unless there's a serious problem. However, finding the right foundation for your web site can be difficult unless you know what you're looking for. When you compare web hosts, you need to first understand what the needs of your particular web site are. How much traffic do you anticipate? Will you need an e-commerce component? What degree of security will you need? If your web site requires exceptional speed and performance, you may need a virtual dedicated server. By understanding what your needs are before you begin comparing competing web hosting packages, you can get the best package for your web site without spending a fortune.

Generally, web hosts offer competitively priced packages that have standard features, and then a series of second-tier options. Most hosting plans are relatively inexpensive to purchase. However, the expense is incurred by the slightly more unusual features that you may require to make your web site function. These features are provided to you by the web host, and include security certificates, email accounts, access to databases, and a variety of others services that can be priced either a la carte or as part of a package. Make a point of checking out what the rates are, and how they are billed.

The best way to get an idea of the top web hosts is to start reading web hosting reviews, and check the web hosting rating. A web hosting review should not only list the features included in the package, but give you an idea of what the web host's customer service is like. If you have a problem, how difficult is it to get someone to answer your question? Are the technicians competent? Are there bandwidth limits? Once again, reading hosting reviews will help you find out who has the best packages for the best rates, with the most accessible and knowledgeable customer support.

One more tip: don't sign any contracts longer than 1 year. A great many factors can change in that time frame, and to compete effectively on the internet, you need to retain your flexibility.

Remember: web hosting is a foundation. Make sure it’s designed to support your needs.