Only the most dramatic and impactful web host issues make the news, like when a major hack or breach occurs. While it is very important to make sure any web host you use has top notch security, it is not “common” for a web host to get hacked. However, there are, of course, common complaints that top the charts when it comes to why users are calling for tech support or looking for another provider. The good news is that there are ways to avoid these annoyances simply by doing your due diligence. If your web host is notorious for getting complaints in these three areas, start looking elsewhere:
- A slow website
There are many things that can make a website slow, from having a poor Wi-Fi connection on your end (or your website visitor’s end) to stuffing your website full of big images. However, don’t forget about your web host in all of this. “Network latency” is the delay between trying to access a fully loaded site and actually getting there—and your web host plays a big role. They should utilize the highest quality hardware, have support staff on hand and prioritize the reduction of network latency.
For some website owners, you may also want a host with a Content Delivery Network (CDN), or one who supports a CDN. With this, you can access cached versions of your website pages in order to speed things up in all regards. A CDN can help you drastically up your speed, particularly if you have a lot of visitors from around the world.
- It’s expensive!
There should be no financial surprises when you choose a web host, but remember that sometimes you get what you pay for. There are a lot of free hosting offers out there, and then there are a lot of hosts that seem to charge an incredible amount. You should feel comfortable asking a “free” host how they are benefiting—the normal routes of revenue for them are advertising or offering you products for sale. Free hosting can work for you as long as you are getting enough data and bandwidth for your unique needs. You should also be able to upgrade easily down the road if you wish.
However, do keep an eye out for hosts who feature “unlimited bandwidth.” This usually comes with contingencies like capping your traffic or charging you if you go over the so-called unlimited amount of transfers. As for unlimited data, that is very feasible but the vast majority of website owners don’t need it.
- Lack of tech support
People usually only contact their web host if there’s a problem, and that is not when you should find out customer service is terrible. An outline of how support works, the hours and other details should be figured out before you choose a host. Some hosts might have live 24/7 phone support while others force you to send them a form and there’s no telling when you’ll hear back.
Look at reviews, get word of mouth recommendations and look at their social media presence. There is no guarantee that you’ll get everything you want with a host, but doing your research can stack the odds in your favor.