This is an article ‘Shopping for a Web Host in Five Easy Steps’ by Marc Primo Warren
Every website is more than just a company's digital storefront. Most importantly, your site serves as a portal to boundless opportunities for engagement, conversions, and loyalty, to name a few. Whether you aim to attract potential customers or share your creative endeavors or products, your website plays a pivotal role in defining your online presence. However, there's always a catch. The success of your website isn't solely determined by its design and content. For most, the hidden linchpin that often escapes the spotlight is your chosen web hosting company.
Imagine your website as a performance on a grand stage. Every pixel, every line of code, and every carefully crafted word has a role to play in your captivating show. But what if the curtains are drawn haphazardly, the lighting needs to be more adequate, and the sound system crackles? The result would be a disappointing experience for the audience – your visitors. This is where the significance of an SEO-friendly web hosting company comes into play.
Five steps to hiring the best web host for the job
Your website's performance, accessibility, and overall user experience are intricately linked to the web hosting service you partner with. In this tremendously complex digital age, where search engine visibility can make or break your online endeavors, it's essential to have a hosting provider that keeps your site up and running and boosts its search engine optimization (SEO) efforts.
To help you find the right partners for the job, here are five easy steps to follow when shopping for the right web host:
Step 1: Define Your Digital Needs
Before diving headfirst into the sea of hosting options, take a moment to reflect on your website's purpose, goals, and audience. Are you launching an e-commerce platform, a blog, or a corporate site? Understanding your website's nature and the expected traffic volume is crucial in choosing a hosting plan that aligns perfectly with what you need to create quality results.
First, envision your website as your canvas – the medium through which you'll convey your message, call-to-actions, or brand story. Private companies would probably consider it a flagship store where customers engage, explore, and make crucial buying decisions. Once you've defined your digital needs, finding the right web hosting choice that resonates with these business goals and can apply the correct SEO strategies should follow.
Step 2: Ensure Good Uptime Guarantee
Arguably the most pivotal yardstick of a hosting provider's SEO-friendliness centers around their commitment to uptime assurance. Uptime signifies the proportion of time during which your website remains accessible and operational to users. A heightened uptime reduces the likelihood of visitors stumbling upon an inaccessible site, preventing them from being rerouted to search engines. Hosting platforms that offer superior reliability generally come with enhanced uptime commitments.
It's prudent to opt for a host that guarantees at least 99.9 percent uptime (or even higher if attainable) for optimal outcomes. This translates to approximately 1.44 minutes of daily downtime and an unacceptable 8.8 hours annually. A rather impressive track record.
However, it's wise to exercise caution when confronted with a host that boasts of 100 percent uptime. In reality, some degree of downtime is inevitable. The crux of the matter is to curtail this downtime to the shortest feasible duration. By doing so, you shield your SEO performance from being adversely affected.
Step 3: Explore Server Locations
As your website's uptime guarantees its availability to users, the geographical placement of your server can significantly influence the speed at which it becomes accessible to them.
When you are subscribed to a shared, VPS, or dedicated server hosting plan, your website resides on a physical server stationed within a data center. This contrasts with cloud hosting, where your data finds its home in the cloud. Ideally, your data center should be near most of your site's visitors.
Additionally, hosting services should enhance performance by integrating a Content Delivery Network (CDN), which works in tandem with the servers to distribute content efficiently, further bolstering loading speeds and overall user experience.
The rationale is simple: the further your server is geographically, the longer the loading times for your site may become.
Step 4: Consider Your Available Add-ons
In addition to the core hosting services, numerous hosting companies provide supplementary enhancements that can elevate the performance of your website.
Automatic Backups ensure you'll have a readily available backup to restore your site in the event of any unexpected setbacks. At the same time, Secure Sockets Layer or SSL certificates heighten your site security more than merely opting for HTTPS certificates. Ensure that your hosting service supports SSL certificates.
Most importantly, consider that even the most adept marketers can find themselves in need of assistance within the vast digital labyrinth. A web hosting service equipped with responsive and knowledgeable 24/7 customer support will serve as your reliable troubleshooter during such unexpected downtimes.
Having ample support is your safety net when navigating evolving technical complexities. On the other hand, private enterprises can ensure seamless operations even when glitches threaten to disrupt customer engagement in real-time.
Step 5: Aspire for Scalability
As your website gains momentum, the demands on your hosting will also evolve. Not to worry, though, as this is a positive sign of growth. However, reviewing more diverse hosting plans is best when your website traffic surges to a level that calls for migrating to a dedicated server. The transition can be smoother and more cost-effective if you don't have to change hosting providers simultaneously.
Always keep in mind that your website might expand to accommodate resource-intensive campaigns. Your company could likewise venture into new markets, requiring more significant server resources. A web hosting service that offers scalability ensures you're primed for these forthcoming victories.
Take Time to Read Reviews
Following these five steps to a tee gives you better insights into making smarter web hosting options that support your goals and propel your company to unprecedented heights. One important point to consider is that the hosting sector often attracts more negative feedback than many other industries.
With that, there's still a wealth of valuable insights you can extract from reviews. Seek out hosting providers that consistently surface on Top Web Hosts rankings. Dive into these reviews to confirm that the hosting plan under your consideration aligns with your anticipated requirements. This way, you can manage your expectations as you work with the right partners in the industry.