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The Pros and Cons of Small Web Hosting Companies

Published on 10/14/2010 by

With thousands of web hosting companies looking for your business, you have a wide variety of choices when it comes to choosing a reliable web host.   Medium and large hosting companies are well known and often lauded, but what about the little guys?  Could you find happiness and reliability with a small web hosting company?  Today we’re looking at just that.

What it takes to start a web hosting company

It may surprise you to learn that you could start your very own web hosting company in less than 24 hours.  All you need to get your business started is a reseller hosting plan, a domain name, a PayPal account and a website design.  That’s it!  For less than $50, you could actually be online tomorrow selling your very own web hosting plans.

Thankfully, most web hosting companies don’t make a spur of the moment decision to begin selling web hosting.  For them, there’s a business plan involved, a support staff employed and an ample amount of experience under their collective belts.  We bring up the simplicity of beginning a hosting business only as a reminder that you should always do your research by reading web hosting reviews and understanding who you’ll be doing business with.

The disadvantages of small web hosting companies

  • Small companies don’t normally own their own data centers.  Many of the larger, more well established hosting companies own their own data center and as such, can provide instant assistance in dealing with server issues like hard drive failure.  This can save crucial minutes of downtime if you’re dealing with an e-commerce business. 
  • Service and support may be limited to certain hours.  Some small companies are actually a one or two man show and others employ many support personnel.   Because of this, you may find that some small companies only offer sales and support during certain business hours.
  • Prices may be higher.  Small companies have to compete with large, well known businesses that can afford to underprice their services.

The advantages of small web hosting companies

  • Exceptional support.  Because smaller companies don’t have hundreds of thousands of clients all needing help at the same time, they can provide personalized support quickly.  Some of the best hosts in the industry are very small companies that have earned their solid reputation by providing superior support and customer service.
  • More plan options.  Larger companies offer only a few web hosting plans of varying sizes and are pretty rigid about not changing things up.  Smaller companies are willing to work within your budget and create a personalized plan for you.
  • Everything happens faster.  From sales to setting up an account to answering support questions, because smaller companies have fewer clients to deal with, they’re able to give you exactly what you need when you need it.  Support questions are often answered immediately and you never have to wait around for anything.

Though there are obvious advantages and disadvantages to hosting your website with a small web hosting company, it’s even more important that you consider the host’s reputation.  Do some research, read web hosting reviews, and choose the company that has a proven track record of reliability and stability—no matter what their size.