Choosing a Web Server Provider

Choosing a Web Server Provider   by Leon Belenky

in Internet / Web Hosting    (submitted 2010-12-06)

Undoubtedly, the biggest choice you will make when starting up your own website (or moving an old website to a new server) will be which provider you choose. Regardless of if you used a shared server or prefer the personalization of dedicated servers, there are several things that you should check for in a web hosting provider before doing business with them.

Naturally, the first thing you'll want to check out about each potential server provider is their previous reputation with people who have used them for hosting before. A quick search online will not only turn up personal reviews from previous users that you can go off of, but there are some websites that even have their own top web hosting companies list. These lists are fantastic for anyone looking for their first or a new server for their website: consider them a pre-made checklist of potential providers for you to check out. When looking at these reviews and lists, try to gather some basic information about how reliable the server is: do they frequently go down? How is their customer service? Do they work to address any problems, or have they been known to ignore suggestions? All of these things will be of extreme importance to you should you decide to use their service.

You'll also want to see about what packages each company offers, as well as how much each costs per month or year. If you're transferring a previous website to another server due to size constraints, then you'll likely be fine with paying the extra money for a dedicated server. However, if you're just starting your website up, you'll probably prefer the cheap web hosting available on shared servers. While these servers don't offer you as much control as a dedicated server would, you'll likely find that (at least in the beginning stages of your website) having someone else take care of server maintenance will be a load off of your shoulders.

In the end, remember that there's a reason for there being so many different providers for web servers. Every person likes different things, and that includes what they prefer to have in their web server. While some enjoy the control and involvement of a dedicated server, others may very much enjoy having their website taken care of for them on a shared server - just as some may be fine with paying more, and others may not. When looking for the best web server for you, the main question you ask should not be what other people like in a hosting service - it should be as to what you personally are looking for.