Getting Hosting Right: Part 2

Getting Hosting Right: Part 2

And We’re Back!

In round 1, we answered a bunch of questions regarding our site and hosting needs. Now let’s learn a little more about what those answers mean and why they are important.

We’ve got to find the right fit for us, so we’ll get a price-range in mind and think about what our needs based on some of the answers we already have.

  • Dedicated IP address – If we are to have any secure data on or site where and SSL is needed then we are required to have our own Dedicated IP address rather than a shared address with the rest of the sites on the server. I personally recommend a dedicated IP regardless, WHY? It’s more secure and who knows what else is on that shared server. Not everyone is on the internet for the same reasons as you, and their purpose may directly affect your security and performance as well. For a few extra $$$ a month, Dedicate Yourself.
  • Backups – Is my site automatically backed up with my plan? If so how? Daily, weekly, monthly? If not what are my other options and costs? Not much else needs to be said here, it’s a no brainer. We need to know if it is our responsibility or the Hosts responsibility for backups, what is the policy/procedure, and the cost if any.
  • Quality of Support Provided – I love Google, but I can’t talk to anyone on the phone and that drives me nuts. So much sometimes is mistranslated through email and my answers aren’t always in Support and FAQ forums. For me a person that I can either get a hold of via phone or chat is important. Know what you’re getting and what is of value to you. Most often if you need to contact your host it is because of something of importance or urgency. A good host should provide multiple solutions for this, as well as reasonable response times that they adhere to.
  • SSL Support – As mentioned briefly above, is this a service that is provided? Most companies do offer what you need and will setup an SSL for you. With most people transferring and storing secure data on the web today it’s very important to be able to secure that data and get the help and support you need to do so.
  • Updates – Updates are very important for Security as well as site performance. Depending on the software used to build and manage your site this can vary. You need to protect your investment and make sure that a strategy exists to keep up to date with these. Find out who is responsibly for maintenance. You, your host, your developer. Regardless this is a MUST and make sure it fits into your Hosting plan one way or another.
  • Site Performance – All sites are not alike. Regardless of look, functionality, and purpose there is more going on behind the scenes that can be unique than is being displayed to the end user. Make sure you are getting the right type of software/hardware combination that serves your end user experience well. A lot of image heavy portfolio and e-commerce type sites will need a dedicated server possibly to meet their desired needs and keep your site running smoothly for those that rely on it.

Paying a little extra is like insurance. The value can be hard to see until you need it, but as the guy answering the call on the other end of the line, trust me. You’ll be glad it’s there when you really need it.

HHMAN101_Mike-Holmes-headshot-arms-crossed_s3x4_lg

If you only listen to two Canadians today…

Take the time to ask the questions, determine your needs, and find the right provider for you. As I mentioned before use your developer/designer as a resource as well as make sure to get answers from hosting providers that are not directly given to you.

Too many times, I see people skipping these steps, and it does not often work out first time around. My old Pal Mike Holmes always says “Do it right, do it once.”

It’s your investment. Make sure to take the time to make it right.

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