Webhost features has something to do with your blog problem?
This morning, I have visited one of my blogger friend’s website.
This is actually what I am doing frequently, at least once or twice a week.
How I was surprised that he had site’s downtime in the last days, because when it has happened, I didn’t notice it.
However I feel his frustation, because I had many times of downtimes, even got my blog suspended by my sharedhosting a few months ago.
When this webmaster’s nightmare happens, we can’t ask for any other’s help, except of our webhost.
No doubt, in this technology era, most of webhost have great support and webhost features.
But it is also not a secret, when they want you to sign up, they certainly claims that they are the most professional, 24/7 supports, affordable, and so on..and so on.. (related: recommended webhosting for wordpress)
Webhost Features and promises
Since all of them claim so sweet promises with full webhost features, it is also a tough decission to choose which one is actually suits you and the most reliable to you before signing yourself up.
Not only you will only loose your money, but also you will save frustation in the future.
Speaking of frustation when your blog has some problems, please believe me on this, you will be so thankful if you choose the right web hosting, especially when you earn money regularly with your blog, one day down time is not going to be a funny joke.
At that error moment, I often think myself, “I prefer pay $50 a month for a good reliable web hosting than $5 a month for a crappy web hosting”.
As mentioned, this applies if you earn more than $50 monthly from your blog, otherwise, you will pay more than you earn, which doesn’t make sense, except you intend to give your blog a budget :)
These are my basic important webhost features when I choose them
1. Is it easy to use?
Easy to use interface is very important for bloggers, especially if they are non-techie like myself.
It is true, that you can always ask for a help, but you have to wait for the answer, and if you don’t have a lot patience this will only frustate you in your blogging journey.
cPanel with complete organized icons, such as, php MyAdmin icon, fantastico, backup, awstats icons are easy to use, and you will have a better navigation to control your blog’s backend.
I remember in one of my video on YouTube, one of the commenter actually asked, what kind of FTP server I haved used in one of my tutorials.
I answered back, it wasn’t a FTP client, but a cPanel interface. From this question, I assumed, not all webhost have easy to use cPanel interface.
The affordable shared hosts that use nice to use cPanel that I have tried and used until today, are JustHost, and HostGator. (related: JustHost vs Hosgator review)
2. Is the customer support fast? really 24/7 support)
Actually this blog is now running in a VPS server, a bigger server than a sharedhosting. It is actually like having my own server, where I can create cPanel for people. (related, traffic drops after moving to VPS?)
I don’t recommend VPS unless you earn decent money with your blog because it is a lot more pricey and more complicated to use than a sharedhosting.
The customer support is very very important. When I wanted to decide which VPS server I should use, the very first step is testing the support. How did I do it?
There are tons of web hosting out there, I am sure you know it, but to test their customer services is quite easy.
You go to their live chat support, if they have, and ask, whatever questions you have, and see how responsive, helpful, friendly, and “make sense” their answers are.
This part is I really like, because when they answer me unpleasantly, I immediately, think, this web hosting is definitely not for me, I thank them, close the live chat, and move to another alternatives.
If you have found a good support, you can then compare between two or more web hosting and google for reviews in forums. This will help you deciding on which one you should sign up.
Choosing VPS server however is completely different than a sharedhosting, because usually they offer one month trial, so you can test them for one month.
And choosing a sharedhosting, at least I know with HostGator, you can also have one month trial. Don’t move or set up your main blog for this month, only a dummy blog to test how good they are.
2. Does this web host meet WordPress 3.2+ requirements?
This applies for everyone who wants to start a blog using wordpress blogging platform, since wordpress 3.2 released, it has minimum requirements, the most important is the PHP and MySQL version requirements.
Do not be worried because of this, most web hostings nowadays are running above 5.2, so it is mostly not an issue, however it is always good to check. Not that you pay very cheap somewhere, and when you want to install wordpress, you will find problems.
Although some people also recommend choosing a server which has fantastico to enable you doing 5 minutes quick wordpress install, I would not install wp with fantastico, I prefer install it manually to be safe. (related: fantastico wordpress security).
The common problems that a blogger can have with a web server is when your blog grows and gets very big, with a lot of visitors, server usage, and Ram usage, is that they sometimes suspend your blog to protect another blogs that are hosted in the same server. This is why they are called shared hosting.
But according to my experience, immediately contact your host, and ask what you can do about it, also they usually backup your site.
The other issue that can happen is down time. Some of them have frequent downtime, and of course you want to avoid it. However to know whether a webhost has too much downtime, you will know after a few months using it.
To have a complete and reliable webhost features and supports are the very essential level we have to do before installing our blog, so put your “make money online” thinking aside first to decide the right web server.