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Website Server Planning Tips

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Do you want to build a website, but don’t know where to start? Or maybe you are an experienced web developer, but looking to switch plans?

Perhaps you have a business and don’t have a website, and you are losing out on great opportunities for your business. With the advance in technology, more and more people are exposed to the internet. Gradually they are learning to utilize the Internet for their daily requirements.

A website itself can be used to accomplish many different marketing strategies to help your business grow. Therefore, websites take a front seat reaching out to the millions of people looking for your kind of services online.

A business website is the best way for your online business presence, where you can easily show off your products and services, all over the world. And the website informs your customers online every time 24/7. A responsive website will surely help you to reach your target market if used properly and it’s important that you take the right planning and research when deciding on your infrastructure.

Identify Your Needs and Things to Implement

Perhaps one of the most important things to decide when choosing the hosting solution is to choose one that can accommodate the needs of your website and the things it can implement.

  • Identify your hosting needs. What kind of website are you building? Are you using something common, like a WordPress blog?
  • Identify whether or not you need support for particular scripts or Windows applications and other special software. You need to clarify with your prospective provider if they can actually provide service for the applications you want to implement.
  • What other add-ons do you need? Important considerations are one-click installers, SFTP/FTP access for file transfers, .htaccess file access, data transfer capacity, and disk space ignore options or even eCommerce features for specific sites.

Assess Your Options When Unforeseeable Circumstances Happen

You need to be able to clarify with your service provider just what other services it can provide you when it comes to unforeseeable situations such as slowdown and malicious attempts to access your account.

  • Identify how small or large your web traffic volume can go. Sometimes, costs and features vary depending on the bulk of traffic you want your website to be able to support.
  • How stable is the service? Nothing is more important than having a web host that operates 24/7, as after all visitors can come from anywhere in the world.

See Options for Your Account Management

Another important aspect of a website hosting solution you should look for is its ability to provide various methods of account management for you and your account. Just what are your options when it comes to expansion and payment? This is essential in order for you to prepare for future activities on your site.

  • Identify signup and renewal price, as sometimes renewing costs are much higher than signup costs. Be careful when you click on plans that offer prices for signup at a discount, as sometimes renewal prices skyrocket. Unless you’re ready to hop between providers every two years or so, try to clarify these with the providers immediately.
  • What’s their refund policy and free trial policy? Are there are any extra fees for cancellation? What’s their refund policy, if any, when the trial period has ended?
  • What about expansion? Shared web hosts are pretty powerful nowadays, which make them good options for your first servers. If you feel confident enough to move to a dedicated server, ask your service provider if such an option is available.

Look for Tiered Pricing to Ensure Room to Grow

One requirement for finding a good web host should be flexibility and scalability.  Your business might be a solo venture at this point, but bear in mind the possibility of future expansion.  Does the web host offer a flat fee for a limited amount of features? Or will you be able to expand your website in the future (by adding additional domain names and e-mail addresses, for example) while paying only for what you need? Familiarize yourself with the payment scheme and make sure the growth your site will be able to keep up with the growth of your business.

You never know at the start exactly how busy a website will be and traffic, as well as other factors, can change literally overnight. This flexibility is a great way to save money on unnecessary resources while still having them instantly available if and when needed. You can drive and grow your website safe in the knowledge that when there is a surge in traffic, you can immediately adapt accordingly.

Redudancy and Backups

Does your webhost provide redundancy, content delivery network, or have multiple datacenter locations on several continents?  If the power goes out in your webhost’s region, do you still want your website to be available to the world?  If your server goes out, is there a copy elsewhere?  If you are planning to have eyeballs on your website from all over the world, or require high availability, these are important considerations.

Do you plan on doing your own backups?  Does the webhost provide automated backups and how often?  How much storage for backups do they provide?  As websites are commonly hacked and breached, backups, in addition to security, are an important element for deciding on which host to go with.  You also don’t want a host that only does one day of backups only to discover that the only backup that exists is a hacked and vulnerable version of your website.

Enhanced Security

Security is a major issue with hosting.  Ensure that your host specializes in custom firewalls for your CMS if you are using one, and updates web server scripts and systems regularly.  If you are looking for advanced security, you might consider a VPS or dedicated server vs a shared server.  You will not be affected by threats against other websites on a shared hosting platform.  A unique IP address might also be another option. This will prevent the conflict that often occurs on a shared system where other users are blacklisted for any reason.

Don’t Underestimate the Value of Good Customer Service

Does the web host have a dedicated customer service department? Are they easy to reach? Is their contact info displayed prominently, and is there an option to both call and e-mail? Does the web host offer help pages and resources to guide you through the process of setting up your site? Try calling the customer service phone number just to see how easy it is to reach a real person.  Look for a host that provides flexible packages, monitoring, installation, tuning, and a 24/7 support team.

The Bottomline: Getting The Right Hosting

If you have a website you want to be up and running – especially if it’s for a brand or a company – it’s important you find the right hosting solution for your website needs.  The kind of hosting solution you should get should be a provider that understands how volatile the internet can be and how various adjustments have to be made to websites on the fly in order to sustain itself in a continuously-improving digital market.

Managed vs Unmanaged Hosting

Most webmasters start off by hosting their WordPress websites on shared servers and hence the concept of management does not apply. The term only becomes applicable when we start looking for Virtual Private Servers (VPS) and Dedicated Servers.

What Is Managed Hosting?

A Managed hosting plan refers to a hosting plan which provides management services in addition to the basic components of a hosting plan. The basic components of a hosting plan are the servers, operating systems, and the requisite software used for running websites.

These additional management services may include a control panel, SSH access, automated backups, malware scanning and removal, status monitoring, security sweeps, automated software updates, and much more. It is these additional management services which are the basis of the name “Managed Hosting” for this hosting plan.

Advantages and Disadvantages of Managed Hosting

The advantages of Managed WordPress hosting are increased reliability, improved speed, improved security and a wider range of management services for a much lower cost.

  • Increased reliability
  • Improved speed
  • Improved security
  • Cheaper: a wider range of management services for a much lower cost.

The Disadvantages include reduced flexibility, limitations, and higher monthly cost. If you want to try a managed solution, special discount plans are periodically available.

  • Reduced flexibility, however, this is more of an obvious matter, not a downside.
  • Limitations to possible functionality

Virtual Private Server

A Virtual Private Server acts as a halfway point between shared hosting services and having a dedicated server which is the third type of hosting service. With the virtual private server, you still share the server with other customers however, the server is divided into virtual machines which act as independent dedicated servers. They enjoy greater control and more resources than those with a shared hosting plan. inmotionhosting.com has the leading VPS software on the market.

VPS has become extremely popular lately and prices are continuously coming down. This trend is expected to continue.  Below are some features and advantages common to VPS plans.

Complete User Control

VPS offers you a much greater degree of control over your environment and resources. Restrictions are minimal and you are free to install software, configure things as you would like them and use your choice of control panel.  Shared hosting does not give you that freedom. Another important benefit is that you will get root access and you are able to make use of scripts. This gives you great flexibility to do things yourself as and when you need to. You are also not bound by some of the security restrictions one finds on shared platforms.

WHM Control Panel
WHM Control Panel

Flexibility and Scalability

The great thing about a VPS hosting solution is you only select and pay for the resources you need at the time. It can quickly and easily be scaled down or up as you go, without any down time. It is a completely customized, tailored solution. If necessary, you can easily add, or decrease, RAM, disk space or vCPUs.

43578010 – modern web network and internet telecommunication technology, big data storage and cloud computing computer service business concept: server room interior in datacenter in blue light

You never know at the start exactly how busy a website will be and traffic, as well as other factors, can change literally overnight. This flexibility is a great way to save money on unnecessary resources while still having them instantly available if and when needed. You can drive and grow your website safe in the knowledge that when there is a surge in traffic, you can immediately adapt accordingly.

Enhanced Security

Security is a major issue with hosting and a VPS offers greater levels of security than a shared solution. You are able to put in custom firewalls and set them according to your requirements. You will not be affected by threats against other websites on a shared hosting platform. Also, you will be given a unique IP address. This will prevent the conflict that often occurs on a shared system where other users are blacklisted for any reason.

Environmentally Friendly

An issue that is becoming more and more important these days is the environmental impact of a business. All companies need to try and reduce their carbon footprint and make use of eco-friendly technologies. Using a VPS is one way a company can assist with this. With a dedicated server, you are using all the resources of that server for yourself. With VPS, the resources, and therefore the environmental impact, is shared over multiple users. This makes VPS a greener friendly solution.

Cost-Effective Solution

As the technology improves, the cost of hosting on VPS has come down significantly.

What was previously only viable for big business is now and affordable option even for small business. As previously stated, you only need to pay for those resources you require at the outset and upscale resources as you grow. So, you get the many benefits of private hosting for a reasonable monthly cost.

Dedicated Hosting

This entails using an entire server to power your website. You do not share any server resources with anyone. This comes with a whole load of features, like top-notch hardware at your disposal, management services, 24-hour support provided, automatic backups of data, dedicated IP addresses and much more. All this commitment does not come cheap, of course, Liquid web is a phenomenal web host. They do dedicate servers better than anyone else out there charging $129 a month for their services.

Looking for a Dedicated Server USA, check out GTHost, they provide instant dedicated servers Xeon E3 v3 from $49/mo. No setup fees. Month to month. Delivery in 15 minutes 24/7. 5 premium location: Dallas, Chicago, Los Angeles, Miami, New York 1-10 days trial from $5/days.

Considerations

You should also consider what type of website you want hosting when choosing a suitable web host. A blog, for example, would have different preferences to an online store. A blog would be most suited to a web host that supports WordPress. Most web hosts allow one-click installation of WordPress but the best provide upgraded hardware and dedicated WordPress support. inmotionhosting.com provides one of the best WordPress features out there. It allows one to hold unlimited WordPress sites on one account.

An online store looking for a host should consider the following things in finding the right host. The host must have security features around the customer and payment information, keeping the information from being accessed by a third party. They should also have access to shopping cart software and be integrated with online payment services such as PayPal.

Having provided a comprehensive breakdown in each of the specific fields, I find that it is necessary to provide an overall list of top five web hosting companies in the market today.

Does the web host have a dedicated customer service department? Are they easy to reach? Is their contact info displayed prominently, and is there an option to both call and e-mail? Does the web host offer help pages and resources to guide you through the process of setting up your site? Try calling the customer service phone number just to see how easy it is to reach a real person.  The hosts mentioned above for example, provide flexible packages, monitoring, installation, tuning, and a 24/7 support team.

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One comment

  1. Helpful and very well explained… thanks for sharing the article…

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