How To Choose a Web Host

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How To Choose a Web Host

Tips on choosing a web site hosting company that will meet your needs.

To build a useful and functional site you should pay attention to a few basics. Not all web site hosting companies are created equal. Here are a 8 key areas you should make sure are included in your hosting package:

  • Responsive Customer Support
    In the real world things can go wrong. If there are problems with your site you need 24/7 tech support. Find out if support is available by phone, chat, or email. Determine how long it takes for a response to support issues when they arise.
  • Accommodates Your Level of Knowledge
    Some web site hosting companies provide more assistance and services to newcomers than others. Some hosts guide you with a “take you by the hand” approach, offering unique site building tools geared towards beginners. Other hosting companies offer traditional webmaster tools suitable for experienced site builders.
  • Fast, Reliable Connection to the Internet
    Your web site host must have multiple T1 lines at the very minimum. Even better are T3 or OC3 lines, and your host should be upgrading to new technologies as they become available. Watch out for reports of hosting companies who have frequent down-time.
  • FTP
    You web site should be accessible via FTP anytime day or night.
  • Email and Autoresponders
    Look for the availability and number of POP e-mail accounts and autoresponders you get with your web site. There are lower end packages that provide only a few e-mail accounts and no autoresponders. Often, it’s worth the upgrade to a mid-level package to get these features.
  • Daily Backups
    Insist on a web host that performs daily back-ups.
  • Comprehensive Traffic Logs
    Traffic logs are a crucial service that you should insist on. Server traffic logs help you understand who your customers are and what type of information they are looking for on your site.
  • Ability To Meet Your Growing Needs
    Your host should have the resources to meet your needs as you grow. This means you should have access to your own CGI-bin, multiple sub-domain availability, and support for scripting languages such ASP, PHP, and PERL.
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