You'd be forgiven for thinking that everyone needs a shared hosting provider but it isn't for everyone! There are pros & cons just like any product, so do your research before you buy!
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Up-to-date technology does not necessarily mean a superfluous amount of features that will never be used. Quite a few options that expensive web hosting provide serve almost no use for the average webmaster. Even business websites do not necessarily employ that many options. Be sure that you're not paying a large sum for a chunk of services that you will never use. There is probably a less expensive option with less features that would suit your website.
On the other hand, you want to be certain that the website's server is not being powered by hamster wheels. Out-dated technology can result in slow load times, crashes, and downtime for a website. Downtime means that customers or audience cannot find the site. Slow load times and crashes are just as bad because they frustrate visitors. Frustrated visitors are less likely to become happy customers.
Two different websites can have extremely different needs in terms of bandwidth and storage space. The inexperienced are not likely to have a good estimation of what they will actually need. Even experienced webmasters may under or overestimate the needs of their website.
Generally speaking, a minimum bandwidth package should be fine for a majority of websites. The more people that visit and greater amount of interaction will require higher amounts of bandwidth. Additionally, businesses are getting savvy to the importance of using video to help build audience and generate traffic. You can post a video and share it through the website but after a while it will become a bandwidth hog. Websites that host video will likely need to upgrade their bandwidth sooner or later.
Storage space is similar. The amount needed will really depend on what is included on the site. If you have high volume files, such as video or audio, then more storage space will do the trcik.
Be sure to double check with the provider to see how they handle upgrades before committing. Nobody wants to find themself strapped for space without any flexibility six months down the road. A majority of providers do operate in yearly increments.
Few things can be more frustrating than signing into an agreement with a sketchy company. Be careful not to wind up locked into a yearly contract with a suboptimal service. Be certain to research any company that may become a business opportunity, especially on the internet. There are some bad seeds hiding among the many honest, cheap web hosting companies out there.
An excellent way to estimate trustworthiness is to look at the available communication methods. A reputable business will want to make it very easy for their customers to contact them if they are having a problem. That may include a chat applet, 24/7 800 number service, support email, and an in-depth documentation library. Take the time to test some of these contact methods to see how hard it is to actually get in touch with someone.
It's not uncommon for dishonest merchants to bury their contact information on some obscure help page to dissuade customers from contacting them. If they are hard to get a hold of before signing up, count on them being hard to get in contact with after.