If you decide you want to sell handcrafted items online, you might not be sure how to set up your website to do so. You’d have to give your online customers a means of ordering their purchases from you. One way to do this is to install a shopping cart on your website. There are hosting services able to provide this type of feature, but many others do not. What other features may you need to take into account?
Calculate how much storage space and bandwidth you will require for your website. This depends on your site and what your future plans are. If in doubt, estimate on the high side. Look first for one of the many companies that offer unlimited storage and unlimited bandwidth. Make sure your hosting plans correspond to your needs or your visitors will have to wait for the pages to load.
Before choosing your web host, you should get a good idea of what the control panel looks like. A good hosting service should provide you with tutorials, or a help center to guide you through uploading your site. If you find it difficult getting familiar with the control panel, search for something a little simpler.
Register any domain names you wish to use at an accredited registrar, not through your web host. You want to ensure you always retain control of the domain name. If you register your domain through the same company that provides your web hosting, you may lose control of the name in such circumstances.
Read the website of your host carefully. You should find forums, contact information, and resources like support documentation. Ask if you get access to even more data once you sign up.
When it is time to actually pay for your hosting plan, choose a payment provider that is reliable and well-known. Using PayPal or a major credit card protects you from fraudulent billing practices. The company you select will be unable to charge you without consent from you first, if you use PayPal.
Whenever possible, choose a paid web host over a free one. A professional web host for your business website is important. The reason is due to the fact that free web hosts typically add advertisements on your site, and you don’t have any control over it. Ads which place themselves all over your site will annoy your visitors and drive traffic away.
Find out how good your host’s reputation is. Check out a few user reviews and you will quickly find that there are some web hosts that have a stronger reputation than others. If you can’t find any positive reviews on a prospective host, then you should probably cross them off your list.
Follow the message boards dedicated to your web page hosting company to stay abreast of the latest news. If there are a lot of web hosts that are down, then you now know the problem isn’t just your provider and that this problem is trying to be solved as quickly as possible. After 24 hours, you should monitor the forum to learn more about the problem and its expected resolution time.
Research the server access your web host provides. Will you have access to a more complex server, or a more simple one? Some hosting platforms incorporate FTP-based servers, and others use a simpler control panel. A simple site can be hosted with nothing more than cPanel, but a complex site requires at least FTP access and sometimes SSH.
Both email and call customer support at any web host you’re considering and test their service and knowledge. Make sure that they will meet your needs before committing. It is always wise to know what you can expect from the customer service department before you actually need their help.
Do not select a host based solely on the price. You should consider all of the various features and options. Many useful features are available, so do not select a host that does not meet your requirements just because it offers a good rate. Be certain that whatever host you ultimately choose provides all the options and information you need.
The only thing worse than a long outage, is a lame excuse as to why it happened. Some companies make excuses like electrical problems, but a good company should not need excuses, and will have systems in place that keep your site up regardless. A free or low-cost company will wind up costing you big time if your customers often cannot access your site – don’t accept any excuses!
When in doubt, go over these tips and tricks to see if your web hosting provider has the features that your business website needs or any of your websites need. Avoid paying for things you can do without, but you should also be sure you don’t miss out on anything.