How to choose the best web hosting for your small business

How to choose the best web hosting for your small business

Your website is your online storefront, and it’s important to choose a hosting provider that can give you the best possible platform to showcase your business.

A good hosting provider will provide you with reliable uptime, fast performance, and secure hosting. They will also offer excellent customer support in case you need help with your website.

At Bytestart, we’ve had over a dozen web hosts over the past almost 20 years – so, with this experience in mind, here is our concise guide to choosing the best web host for your own business.

What is web hosting?

Web hosting is the service that stores your website’s files and makes them accessible to visitors over the internet. When someone types your website’s address (domain name) into their browser, their computer will connect to your hosting provider’s servers and download the files that make up your website.

There are many different types of web hosting, but the most common for small businesses is shared hosting. With shared hosting, your website’s files are stored on a server that’s also being used by other websites. This is the most affordable option, but it also means that your website’s performance may be affected by the performance of the other websites on the server.

Other types of web hosting include VPS hosting, dedicated hosting, and cloud hosting. These options are more expensive than shared hosting, but they offer better performance and reliability.

Factors to consider when choosing a hosting provider

There are many factors to consider when choosing a hosting provider for your small business. Here are some of the most important ones:

  • Uptime: This is the percentage of time that your website is available to visitors. A good hosting provider will have an uptime of 99.9% or higher. This means that your website will be down for less than 0.1% of the time.
  • Performance: This is how fast your website loads for visitors. A good hosting provider will have servers that are located in close proximity to your target audience. This will help to ensure that your website loads quickly for visitors from all over the world.
  • Security: Your website’s security is important to protect your customers’ data. A good hosting provider will offer features like SSL certificates and DDoS protection. SSL certificates encrypt the data that is transferred between your website and visitors’ browsers. This helps to protect sensitive information, such as credit card numbers and passwords. DDoS protection helps to protect your website from denial-of-service attacks. These attacks are designed to overwhelm your website with traffic, making it unavailable to visitors.
  • Customer support: If you have any problems with your website, you’ll need to be able to get help from your hosting provider. A good hosting provider will have 24/7 customer support that’s available by phone, email, and live chat. This will help you to resolve any problems quickly and easily.
  • Price: Hosting prices can vary widely. It’s important to find a provider that offers a plan that fits your budget. However, it’s important to remember that you get what you pay for. A cheap hosting plan may not offer the uptime, performance, security, or customer support that you need.

How to choose the best hosting provider for your small business

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Once you’ve considered the factors above, you can start to narrow down your choices. Here are a few tips for choosing the best hosting provider for your small business:

  • Read reviews: Read reviews of different hosting providers to get an idea of their performance and customer service. This is a great way to get an unbiased opinion of a hosting provider.
  • Compare plans: Compare the different plans that each hosting provider offers to find the one that best meets your needs. Make sure to compare the features, price, and uptime of each plan.
  • Ask for recommendations: Ask other small businesses for recommendations of hosting providers that they’ve used and been happy with. This is a great way to get first-hand experience with a hosting provider.

5 more web hosting tips from the Bytestart team

  1. By far the best way to choose a reliable web host is through recommendations from colleagues or other business owners.
  2. Unless you are a technical wizard, you should look for a web hosting company with a good reputation for customer service. We have had dreadful experiences with some providers who offer woeful support, and others who will reply to questions within minutes or hours.
  3. If you are running a small operation, in all likelihood ‘shared’ hosting is all that you will require. This simply means that a sizeable number of domain names are hosted on a single server.
  4. Price is always a consideration for small companies. For shared hosting, you should not need to spend more than £100 per year for your package.
  5. Take a look at prospective hosting companies’ websites. Are they written in easy-to-understand language, do they explain how the hosting packages work in practice? Is the price information simply presented? Typically, the nature of hosting companies’ own websites can often give an initial impression of the experience you may have as a client.

Conclusion

Choosing the best hosting provider for your small business is an important decision. By considering the factors above, you can find a provider that will give you the best possible platform to showcase your business online.

Here are some additional tips for choosing a hosting provider:

  • Start with a shared hosting plan: If you’re just starting out, a shared hosting plan is a good option. It’s affordable and easy to set up. Shared hosting costs as little as £100 per year, whereas managed service hosting may cost around £100/month.
  • Upgrade as needed: As your business grows, you may need to upgrade to a more powerful hosting plan. This will ensure that your website can handle the increased traffic.
  • Don’t be afraid to ask questions: If you have any questions about a hosting provider, don’t be afraid to ask them. A good hosting provider will be happy to answer your questions.

This is a very rudimentary guide to selecting a hosting provider, but hopefully a useful basic guide if you’re just finding out about hosting. A simple Google search will reveal thousands more guides according to the depth of expertise you’re after.

Who do we use at Bytestart?

We’ve used Clook to host our sites for many years now – both shared and managed service packages. The customer service is excellent, and from our point of view, the products are priced fairly.

You can find out more here. We haven’t been paid to promote Clook – we’re just happy to recommend them from our own experience.


https://www.bytestart.co.uk/how-to-choose-the-best-web-hosting-for-your-small-business

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