There are several factors that come into play when choosing the optimum business web hosting provider. Among the more important features that should be thoroughly researched are total web space, monthly bandwidth limits, guaranteed up-time, and whether a shared or dedicated solution should be chosen.
One of the first considerations when choosing a business web hosting provider is the amount of disk space that comes with a standard account. Most providers stock web hosting accounts with a minimum of 3,000 megabytes of total disk space.
The growing trend is for accounts to be allowed unlimited amounts of web space. The idea behind this trend is that most online businesses will not utilize so much server disk space as to cause any hosting issues. Many web hosting companies will simply inform the business that their best option may be to switch from a basic web hosting account to a more robust solution such as a shared or dedicated server option.
The next item of importance is the total amount of monthly data transfers or bandwidth allowed. This is a slightly precarious proposition as most business web hosting providers offer unlimited amounts of bandwidth. However, this is essentially a misnomer and the fine print within the Terms of Service for that web host should be scrutinized heavily. Often there are caveats to the unlimited bandwidth feature that many web hosting customers are completely unaware of.
In most cases, online businesses will never actually reach an amount that would be considered excessive. As with the case of unlimited web space, should a web site begin to use an excessive amount of bandwidth, the web hosting provider will contact the business in question and suggest a server solution over a web hosting solution.
Of course, it goes without saying that knowing what type of up-time guarantees a business web hosting provider can offer is exceedingly important. If one’s web site is always down, the amount of web space and bandwidth given will be inconsequential.
Up-time refers to the total amount of time web servers are up, running, and connected to the Internet. Web hosting providers will generally guarantee a minimum of a 99.9% up-time. What this equates to is is that per month, the servers at these web hosts will be down for a maximum of 43 minutes. The more “nines” on this percentage, the less downtime can be expected. No web hosting provider can guarantee a 100% up-time, as this simply is not a possibility. Weather, accidents, and electrical issues can all come into play and wreak havoc on a server at any time.
Shared vs Dedicated
Another item to think about is whether or not the business in question would benefit from having its online presence on a shared or dedicated server rather than a standard web hosting account.
First, a shared server is one that is split up between several hosting clients but allows each of those clients access as if they were on their own dedicated server. These types of accounts generally have wider permissions and a control panel that allows for easy administration.
A dedicated server option means a business web hosting customer would have access to, and control over, an entire server. There is only one customer per dedicated server hosting option. This type of account allows customers significant room to grow, no worries about possible conflicts with other customers on the web server, and it will always have a control panel incorporated for administration purposes.
If one’s business will require substantial means of control, ample space, and security, a dedicated server option should be considered.
When shopping for a new business web hosting provider, space, bandwidth, up-time and choices between standard hosting, dedicated, and shared server options should all be considered. Careful research into each of these factors will enable a business to get its web site online with relative ease.