It is essential to choose the best web hosting service to be successful in the long term. There are many criteria to consider when opting for a web hosting service – some are obvious and measurable (for instance, cost and guaranteed uptime), while others (for instance, customer support) are more subtle and subjective.
Depending on the web hosting providers, advanced features such as scripting support and shopping cart processing infrastructure will differ. These additional features distinguish web hosting/server providers and help you choose the right solution for your business needs.
Classification of Web Servers/Hosting
Generally, the servers provided by web hosting companies are classified into one of these four categories.
Shared hosting is probably the most common option for small businesses that have minimal traffic expectations. This is the least costly option making it attractive to small entrepreneurial startups.
When a single server hosts only a single web app, it is called a dedicated server. The dedicated server is more expensive than a shared server, but in companies where website performance is paramount to success, this option can be worth the additional cost.
Cloud hosting (VPS):
Like a shared server, virtual private servers (VPS) allow one cloud-based server system to host many websites. A VPS is essentially the cloud-based version of a shared server, but more features can be provided by the VPS because of the scalability, flexibility, and redundancy of cloud infrastructure. For companies with computational and feature requirements that fluctuate over time, a VPS is often a good choice.
With managed hosting, you do not have to take care of technical details, such as server management, core upgrade, plugins, and themes, site backups, and security. Many managed hosts, like the Cloudways Managed Hosting Platform.
The type of web hosting server that you choose will depend on the requirements of your business.
How to Select the Best PHP Web Server
There are over a dozen features you need to consider when selecting a PHP Web Server for your site(s). The quality and reputation of the service provider must also be taken into account. Furthermore, selecting a web hosting service provider for your company essentially means selecting a new business partner. It is a long-term commitment to choose a web hosting service and should never be made without serious and comprehensive research.
Most web hosting services offer a reasonable price for their basic services. On average, it is possible to purchase basic web hosting services for under $10 per month, including a domain name.
Be sure to read the SLA, because, for the first year or two, many services offer low promotional rates and then raise the price to “standard levels” once the promotional period is over.
Slow-loading websites cost the US eCommerce market over $500 billion annually. Visitors usually have very little tolerance for slow-loading pages, so a web host’s performance feature is a key consideration for the decision-making process.
Ecommerce businesses generally require server resource scaling during Q4 when thousands of orders arrive in a matter of weeks. The server must be able to scale up as needed. This is an advanced feature and not every hosting provider offers this service.
You would like to have the server up and accessible 100 percent of the time. However, no web hosting provider can ensure perfection, so most providers commit to 99.9 percent uptime.
Quality of Customer Support
While all the technical considerations of choosing a web host service provider are important to the decision-making process, customer service is often the deciding factor because you need to have peace of mind if things go south.
It is difficult for small businesses to fend cyber attacks on their own as security can overload the already stretched out business resources.
To prevent the onslaught of cyber attacks, a web hosting provider should have the means and resources to offer a secure infrastructure, ensuring the latest updates, patches, and active security process implementation.
A small business must also consider the volume of network bandwidth they need from their PHP web server. Server bandwidth includes both an up and down-stream component and it all depends upon the number of requests and the size of individual request processing.
Web hosting providers offer different sizes of server storage. A small website with only a landing page has different storage requirements from a website with hundreds of content pages.
Transferring Existing Websites
You might need to transfer existing websites to a new web hosting provider. Dispensing upon the size and complexity of the website, this can be a risky operation.
Top-of-the-line web hosting providers have expert technical teams that take care of the migration process and make sure that the website does not break during the transition. Some providers charge for the service while others offer it free as part of the “welcome” set of services.
Knowing how to choose the right hosting company doesn’t have to be difficult at all as long as you know your business requirements and the features that fulfill your operational needs. It is kind of easy to find the right web host if you prioritize the characteristics and price points that will work for you. Make sure you do your due diligence and select a solution that fits your needs so that you don’t start your journey off on the wrong foot.