Choosing a Hosting Platform for Your Business Website

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Website hosting is, by far, one of the most crucial aspects of your online business success.  The wrong hosting platform could cost you dearly. Just think about Amazon in 2013 when they lost over $60,000 per minute for 30 minutes when their hosting crashed.  While your online business might not stand to lose $1,800,000 in half an hour, you could lose data, customers, leads, sales, and any amount of loss of income is bound to be a blow.

With this draw-dropping example in mind, it should be clear that selecting the right hosting for your business website is crucial.  Here are a few things to consider when choosing a hosting platform that is ideal for your needs and business goals.

Identify Your Objectives

As with anything, it’s tough to choose any kind of service before first identifying your needs.  Therefore, assess your website, and get clear about what your intentions are for it.  For instance, if you plan on growing your website into an ecommerce business, that’s going to have a huge impact on your hosting choice.

Alternatively, if you envision your website as more of a Wiki, informative site that earns from affiliate marketing – that too will influence your decision about hosting.  Furthermore, if your website is growing, it might be time to consider an upgrade to a heftier, more reliable provider.

Different Hosting Platforms to Consider

There are different types of hosting services to choose from, and your choice should be based on the servers used by the host as well as your business needs.

Shared Hosting

If you have a small business, or just starting up, you may want to go for this option. It can be extremely affordable, which is often a bonus for new online business websites.  As the name implies, shared hosting is when several different websites share hosting from one server.

This could be a fine solution at the beginning of your business venture. However, remember the larger your website becomes, the more shared hosting will not suffice. The more bandwidth your website requires, the more you’re going to need a dedicated server, which brings us to the next option.

Dedicated Hosting

This is a better option if your site has many different moving parts, is experiencing increased traffic, and demands hefty bandwidth.  This type of hosting is when your website is on a dedicated server. Therefore, this hosting is devoted to your website alone without sharing with any other site. This option can be more expensive.  However, dedicated hosting can be worth the expense because it provides significantly more speed and security to your website.

Cloud VPS Hosting

This type of hosting is when virtual private servers (VPS) accommodate many different websites on a cloud-based server.  It has many advantages in terms of virtually limitless space for growth, and its flexibility. It has proven to be extremely reliable for many small businesses and many startups choose this option because of the built-in scalability.

WordPress Managed Hosting

Any of the three aforementioned hosting services can be used with any WordPress (WP) site.  However, WordPress-managed hosting is specifically designed to cater to WP users and accommodate WP sites.

The advantage of WP hosting is that it uniquely satisfies the needs of WP content management systems.  It integrates fully with WP, and provides many options such as easy WP installs, specialized security, optimized site performance, and more.  Furthermore, enterprise WordPress hosting provides tools that can empower marketing efforts, reveal helpful traffic analytics, and offers built-in scalability.

Other Considerations When Choosing a Host

Most hosting services are required to meet regulations and standards in terms of security and protecting your site from cyberattacks and hacking.  However, not all hosts are created equal in other areas. Here are a few things to consider when deciding to select a hosting service.

Customer Support

If your site goes down, you need instantaneous assistance.  Very often, you might not even know why the site is down, but you definitely know it’s bad news for your business.  Select a host that will respond to a crisis within minutes (not hours). It will make a huge difference in getting you back and running in the event of a site crash.

Consider Scalability and Growth

Some hosts allow you to host more than one domain name and others will provide you with business email addresses.  When choosing a host, make sure they have packages that enable you to add amenities such as extra domains, ecommerce features, and other options you need for your growing website business.

The bottom line – you need to choose a hosting platform that will grow with your business.  That means you should have the option to increase speed, storage, and functionality when it’s time to upgrade your business needs.

Lastly, make sure your host provides backups of your site on their servers.  There’s nothing worse than losing everything you have on your site without a backup from which to restore.

Ultimately, choosing the right hosting platform boils down to your preferences, your audience needs and your vision for your business website.  Hopefully, these insights will help you narrow down your choices and pick the perfect host for your purposes.

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