4 Tips for Effective Web Hosting for New Businesses
Starting a new business and creating a web presence isn't as easy as slapping a website up, creating a business Instagram account, or starting to sell products, especially if you're a busy parent. In fact, web hosting is a complicated process that requires you to be diligent, make strong decisions, and understand the intricacies of the different options available to you if you want to ensure effective web hosting.
1. Follow Good Domain Name Practices
Your domain name needs to make a good first impression, be SEO-optimized, and be easy to remember. If you can, make it the same name as your company, using a shortened version if necessary.It should be easy to spell and avoid using numbers or hyphens, which are hard to translate when vocalizing your domain name. Choose a broad name that allows your business to expand over time. Research your chosen domain name to ensure a similar one doesn't already exist and that you aren't using something that has been trademarked by another business. Finally, be sure to use the proper domain extension. Nearly every business should use a .com extension.
2. Choose the Right Web Hosting Plan
Not all web hosting plans are created equally. It is important to choose one that can expand with your company and provides the protection you need when doing business via the internet. Shared hosting is typically the most affordable, but it means that your business is on the same servers as other websites as well. If another website has a lot of traffic, your site may load more slowly. You also won't be able to customize your user experience. Finally, shared hosting means if one site is vulnerable and a cyber criminal gains entry, yours may be vulnerable, too.
Other (and sometimes better) options include virtual private servers, dedicated web hosting, or cloud hosting. VPS hosting requires websites to share a physical server, but allows your company to have its own virtual one. This means faster load times but could still leave your vulnerable. Dedicated hosting is a step above VPS hosting. Dedicated servers provide the most protection for your company since it will have its own physical server. Finally, cloud-based hosting uses multiple individual servers that work together. Cloud hosting falls between shared and VPS hosting and is perfect for up-and-coming businesses that expect or hope to see a surge in traffic.
3. Avoid Hosts Requiring Long-Term Contracts
Web hosting companies try to draw in new customers by offering very low prices in exchange for very long contacts. Sure, paying $5 a month in exchange for signing a three-year contract sounds simple enough, but there are some things to keep in mind. First, you need to read the fine print. Many of these deals are only available if you pay the entire amount upfront, which means you're paying $180 for a service you haven't even tried yet. Even worse, if you decide you don't like the company, you're stuck with them. Many charge exorbitant fees to break the contract, and even if you can break it free of charge, you won't get the remainder of that $180 back. Never sign a long contract unless you already know, work with, and trust the company. This way, you can be sure you're getting what you deserve for your money.
4. Use a Data Cleansing Tool
Finally, one of the main reasons to have a website is to collect and analyze data that you can use to further your reach in the future. Of course, raw data means inaccurate information that could lead you to make business moves that aren't in your best interest. When hosting your website, data cleaning is a necessity. Data scrubbing software cleans up misinformation, prepares your data, and makes it easier for you to read it, analyze it, and use it to make better strategic decisions. Using a software also helps you to save money, save time, increase your productivity, and minimize your risk.
Of course, what goes on behind the scenes isn't all that's important. Never rush things when you're trying to get your website to go live. Ensuring you have the proper hosting is one thing, but you also need a strong design. By paying attention to both the front and back ends of your digital presence, you are more likely to make your company a success.